Healthcare and Dignity, Not Deportation: Update and Call for Solidarity with Mr. Roy

The deportation scheduled for September 30th was narrowly avoided. Mr. Roy still needs our support!

In the end, Mr. Roy was not deported on Saturday! He was rushed to the hospital on Friday, where he received tests that revealed a blood clot in his leg. Air travel is considered potentially deadly with a fresh clot, as the risk is high that it can detach and enter the lungs. If the Canadian Borders Services Agency (CBSA) had put Mr Roy on a plane Saturday night as they intended, it could have killed him.

Blood clots are a well known complication of the quadruple bypass surgery that Mr Roy underwent on September 7th. Despite this, Mr. Roy was not given compression stockings, was denied pillows to elevate his leg (in fact, migrant prison staff took away the additional pillows he was given), and received no accommodations to walk for at least 15 minutes, three times a day, as needed to reduce his risk of developing a blood clot. The medical neglect he experienced in detention likely contributed to the development of his complication.

Mr. Roy’s treatment highlights the many ways in which the CBSA dehumanizes migrants in detention and disregards their health and safety. However, he is not alone in experiencing medical neglect at the hands of the CBSA. Over the past two decades, at least 18 people have lost their lives in CBSA custody- many due to the CBSA withholding medical attention or mental health care. While many provinces have recently ceased to detain migrants in provincial prisons, these deaths clearly demonstrate that pouring millions of dollars into the construction of federal immigration detention centers does not provide humane or dignified conditions. The only solution is to free all detainees and to implement a full, inclusive regularization program for all undocumented migrants.

Mr. Roy wishes to send a “big thank you to all of you”, as he firmly believes that his deportation was delayed and that he is now receiving the care he needs because community members fought for him. Although his deportation scheduled for this past Saturday was unable to take place due to his hospitalization, Mr Roy has already been returned to the prison for migrants in Laval. The struggle is far from over, as the CBSA could soon announce a new date to proceed with Mr. Roy’s deportation to India, where he fears for his life. Let’s keep the pressure on the ministers going in the days to come to stop his deportation, so that he can continue to live here in dignity and in safety!

Healthcare and dignity, not deportation! Status for Mr. Roy, status for all!

Here are some ways to support:
* Call and send e-mails to Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Minister Marc Miller and Public Safety Minister Dominic LeBlanc:
* Marc Miller, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship
Phone : 613-995-6403 or 514-496-4885 Fax : 613-995-6404
* Dominic Leblanc, Minister of Public Safety
Phone : 613-992-1020 Fax : 613-992-3053

Here is a sample script you can use:
“ I am writing in support of Mr. Roy, who is still facing deportation to India. While Mr. Roy was initially supposed to be deported on September 30th, his deportation was postponed after he was rushed to the hospital and tests revealed a blood clot in his leg. Had his deportation proceeded, Mr. Roy could have died- as blood clots can detach during air travel and enter the lungs. Furthermore, it’s worth noting that Mr. Roy was refused compression stockings, denied pillows to elevate his leg, and not given accommodations to walk for 15 minutes, three times a day, to reduce his chances of developing a blood clot after bypass surgery. In many ways, the medical neglect he experienced in detention likely contributed to the development of this complication.

Despite his deportation being postponed, Mr. Roy has already been returned to the Laval migrant prison and could receive a new deportation date at any time. I am asking that he be released from detention, so that he can receive the care that he needs to recover. In addition, please note that his refugee case was withdrawn and his previous Pre-Removal Risk Assessment evaluated his risks in Bangladesh- as such, the risks he faces in India have never been studied. I hope that you will take action and intervene immediately to stop his deportation, and grant him a temporary resident permit so that he may reopen his PRRA application and submit a request for permanent residence on humanitarian and compassionate grounds. I also ask that you implement a full, inclusive regularization program, so that all non-status migrants can live in safety and dignity. “