TORONTO, March 20, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Torontonians will gather at Nathan Phillips Square to launch the Migrant Rights Network and to demand anti-racist, pro-migrant laws on March 21, the International Day for the Elimination of Racism at 5:30 pm. The event will feature photos of Christchurch Mosque shootings’ victims, speeches, and performances. Immigrant rights and labour activists as well as Muslim and Indigenous leaders will share first hand experiences of organizing against white supremacy and xenophobia in workplaces, neighbourhoods and in laws and policies. Since the Quebec City Mosque shooting in 2017 that left 6 dead and served as a blueprint for the New Zealand shooter, police reported hate crimes have increased by 47% in Canada.

The Migrant Rights Network has come together to intervene in an increasingly divisive and alarmingly dangerous anti-immigrant environment, in the context of a federal election year. The Network is led by grassroots migrant and refugee groups, civil society organizations and labour unions. In addition to calling for legal reforms, March 21 marks the beginning of a national dialogue to create a Platform for Racial and Migrant Justice ahead of the federal election. The Migrant Rights Network is being launched simultaneously in over a dozen cities from Vancouver to Halifax. Full list of actions at www.migrantrights.ca/en/march21

WHEN: 5:30pm, March 21 2019
WHERE: Nathan Phillips Square
WHO: Migrant workers, refugees, Muslims, Indigenous leaders, Labour activists. Organized by Migrant Workers Alliance for Change and dozens of community organizations.
VISUALS: Photos of victims of Christchurch mosque shooting, large Medicine Wheel, performances, interactive community activities, hundreds of Torontonians.
AVAILABLE FOR COMMENT: Syed Hussan (Migrant Workers Alliance), Azeezah Kanji (Muslim legal scholar), Kara Manso (Caregivers Action Centre), Deena Ladd (Fight for $15 and Fairness Campaign)

THE MIGRANT RIGHTS NETWORK DEMANDS

  1. STATUS FOR ALL, STATUS NOW: Permanent resident status and family unity for all migrants and refugees here, and landed status on arrival for those that arrive in the future. Replace Caregiver “pilot project” with a Federal Care Workers Program that provides landed status upon entry for Care Workers and their families. No detentions, no deportations!
  2. DECENT WORK: $15 minimum wage, full labour rights and no employer specific or time limited work permits.
  3. UNIVERSAL SERVICES: Full access to quality public services including healthcare, education, income security, childcare settlement services, pensions, and more for all residents.
  4. JUST SOCIETY: Indigenous self-determination, gender justice, and an end to racism, particularly anti-Black racism and Islamophobia.
  5. NO DISPLACEMENT: An end to practices of displacement and persecution that force people to migrate including climate change, wars, corporate impunity and economic exploitation.

Media Contact :
Syed Hussan, 416 453 3632, hussan@migrantworkersalliance.org
Nil Sendil, 647 710 5795, nil@workersactioncentre.org