Undocumented Guatemalan worker detained pending deportation
Published Wednesday, March 28, 2018 2:42PM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, March 28, 2018 3:42PM EDT
A Guatemalan woman who has been living as an undocumented worker in Montreal for the last nine years has been detained pending deportation.
Lucy Francineth Granados was scheduled to be deported Tuesday, but collapsed Monday at government offices and had to be taken to hospital.
She is currently in a detention centre in Laval.
Several organizations, including Solidarity Across Borders and the Immigrant Workers Centre say they will not stop fighting this deportation.
Granados works as a community organizer for the rights of other undocumented migrants and temporary workers. She is the sole financial supporter of her three children, who are still living in Guatemala.
Last Tuesday, she was arrested and taken from her home by Canadian Border Service Agency officers, who were accused by Mary Foster of Solidarity Across Borders of using excessive force.
Foster and several other demonstrators gathered Wednesday morning in front of the Guy-Favreau complex, where the hearing took place to determine if she would be detained pending the deportation.
Officials determine that she is a flight risk and would need to remain detained until her departure.
“The reaction is one of anger. Anger that someone who is in such a fragile mental and physical state right now, that she collapsed, was unconscious, had to be resuscitated and brought to a hospital. Instead of being released and treated humanely, she is put back into a detention centre and put back into a situation of uncertainty about when and whether she will be deported," said Foster.
Her supporters now want the deportation order cancelled for Granados, saying she is very active in the Non-Status Women’s Collective of Montreal. It’s estimated that there are around 40,000 people without status living in Montreal. While it was officially declared a sanctuary city, meaning that someone without papers can receive municipal services without fearing deportation, it’s ultimately up to the Canadian government to decide whether a person can stay or go.
Granados left her native country in 2009 after the death of her husband. She made her way to Canada where she tried – and failed—to get refugee status in 2012.
She lived for several years as an undocumented migrant when she made an application for permanent residency in 2017.
Her supporters are asking Federal Ministers of Immigration and Public Safety to intervene – they’re also asking for an independent investigation into the conduct of the CBSA officers who arrested her.
- With files from La Presse Canadienne