Mother pleads for stay of deportation to care for ailing son
A Caribbean woman set to be deported next week is pleading for an emergency reprieve to prevent being torn apart from her ailing eight-year-old son.
After a decade in Canada, Lasalle woman Abigail Butcher is being ordered to return Saint Vincent on Tuesday.
Her Canadian-born son, Mikhail, seeks treatment at the Montreal Children’s Hospital every six months due to a hole in his severely malformed heart.
Butcher says the hospital in Saint Vincent told her they don't have the equipment or personnel to properly care for him, should so be forced to return there, and thus would have to leave the boy behind.
"So I'm pleading for compassion,” she said through tears. “That's what I ask for. Compassion to be with my child to continue to take care of him here."
Butcher said she can't imagine being apart from her young son, as Immigration Canada has permitted. While he could live with his paternal grandmother, the elderly woman would have difficulty looking after the boy, said Butcher.
The traumatic experience has deeply affected the child, who desperately wants to stay in Montreal with his mother.
"Because this is where I live and all my friends,” said Mikhail Butcher-Crooks, crying.
In a statement, Immigration Canada told Abigail Butcher that she should respect the decisions made by Canada's “highly-trained, independent and fair adjudicators” and leave the country.
Friend Roslyn Laidlow said it’s unfair, especially since Butcher has not been a burden on the government.
"She has not take a dime, a penny from the Canadian government for 11 years she's been here as a single mother taking care of her son," she said.
Butcher has worked full-time, and legally for the duration of her years in Canada, first at a home daycare, and for the last four years at a grocery store.
Butcher said she began the immigration process in 2005 and is now broke after wasting $15,000 dollars on lawyers who did not fulfill their promises.
The request for a stay of deportation by her new lawyer was recently denied in federal court.
Abigail insists she doesn't want special treatment, only an emergency stay of deportation so the proper paperwork can be filed by her lawyer.
They hope it will be complete before her deportation early Tuesday morning.