The Canadian Federation of Students, Migrant Workers Alliance for Change, and the Canadian Association of University Teachers jointly express our outrage at the decision by the federal government to serve deportation orders to hundreds of international students, predominantly from the Punjab region of India.
It is unfair and inhumane to serve deportation orders to international students who were targeted and exploited by an unregulated education recruiter. Many of these students are from working class backgrounds and were charged anywhere between $26,000 to $33,000 in fees to enter and study in Canada under false pretenses. Over $23 million dollars was stolen from students within this scheme—money that many of the students do not have access to and have had to make sacrifices to attain.
Show your support and sign the petition created by the affected students in their fight for justice here.
The mistreatment and abuse of migrant student workers (current and former international students) is not an exception. Many international students coming to study in Canada are from working class backgrounds and are exploited by recruiters, educational institutions and employers. Lack of permanent resident status makes it difficult and often impossible for them to protect themselves. Colleges and universities often work with agencies that recruit students from the global South by promising permanent residency. Many families of international students will give their entire life savings and take out massive high-interest loans to ensure their children have a chance of a better life.
International students on average pay over five times the tuition fees as domestic students and many are dealing with heavy backlogs to attain extensions on their study and work permits, and struggle to meet the restrictive requirements to qualify for permanent residency.
Our government needs to do better to support international students who do not have access to federal or provincial funding, housing vouchers, or public health insurance. Canada is long overdue to update educational legislation on ethical recruitment practices and build on the policies developed in the United Kingdom and Australia.
We are calling on the Minister of Public Safety, Marco Mendicino and Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, Sean Fraser to immediately revoke the deportation orders facing these students and grant them permanent resident status by either approving their humanitarian and compassionate applications or including them in the regularization program Prime Minister Trudeau promised by waiving inadmissibilities on the basis of misrepresentation.
Canadian Federation of Students
Migrant Workers Alliance for Change
Canadian Association of University Teachers
For inquiries, please contact James Casey at firstname.lastname@example.org.