• An average of over 242 children per year were detained in Canada between 2010 and 20141
  • Multiple studies confirm the negative consequences of immigration detention
  • Canada’s current practice contravenes its domestic and international legal obligations

At several key points in history, Canada has offered refuge to those seeking safety, and protected the rights of children.

These instances stand in stark contrast with Canada’s record on immigration detention, which has been repeatedly criticized, most recently by the UN Human Rights Committee in 2015.2 Concerns raised include the indefinite nature of immigration detention, deaths in detention and lack of access to appropriate medical care for detainees. As organizations and individuals that care about children, we believe that Canada should immediately cease the practice of placing children in immigration detention. These detainees include asylum seekers, refugees, Canadian citizens and non-citizens. Children range in age from newborns and toddlers to pre-teens and teenagers, some of whom are unaccompanied. In most cases, children are held alongside their parents or adult siblings, who are held only for immigration-related reasons. Although many of these children are held as “guests” to avoid separating them from detained parents, in fact they are “detained guests” with no right of review of their detention, and inadequate consideration of their best interests when their parents’ detention is being reviewed. In order for Canada to uphold its legal obligations under the International Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the practice of placing children in immigration detention must be abolished.

Children should not be subject to immigration detention. Children in immigration detention live like prisoners,3 in punitive conditions,4 in immigration holding centres and, in some cases, jails. They spend their days in secure facilities, exposed to guard pat-downs and barbed wire fences, with minimal access to outdoor areas, education and play. They lack healthy food and have sleep difficulties. Unaccompanied minors are routinely held in solitary confinement.5 Research conducted in Canadian immigration detention facilities6 shows that detained children suffer extreme distress, fear, and a deterioration of cognitive, physical and emotional functioning both during and long after detention, including anxiety, selective mutism, and post-traumatic stress symptoms. These findings are consistent with research in other countries,7 which shows that children subject to immigration detention have dramatically increased rates of depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts, and may experience developmental delays or behavioural issues. Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Protection Act8 identifies the best interests of the child as a relevant consideration9 and mandates that immigration detention of children should occur only as a last resort.10 However, immigration detention is never in a child’s best interest, and should never be considered an acceptable option. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees11 has condemned the immigration detention of children, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child12 has called on states to “expeditiously and completely cease the detention of children on the basis of their immigration status”,13 and the UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants, François Crépeau, has recently released a statement on the growing problem of immigration detention of migrant children.14 Canada is failing to meet these standards.

Children should not be separated from their parents or primary caregivers. Child welfare agencies strive not to separate families. In some cases when children are at risk, they may be required to place children in alternate care. However, it is not appropriate to consider the placement of children in child welfare agencies as an alternative to detention. Separation from caring and capable guardians is not in children’s best interests. The Universal Declaration on Human Rights15 and the Convention on the Rights of the Child16 protect the right to family life, and the latter states that children shall not be separated from their parents except where it is necessary for the best interests of a child. Ontario’s Child and Family Services Act emphasizes the “need for continuity of care and for stable relationships within a family and cultural environment.”17 Similar provisions are contained within each province’s child welfare legislation.18 Alternative care may be particularly traumatic for children from newcomer communities, who experience isolation and disconnection from their identities and cultural background when they are placed with caretakers outside of their communities. Alongside the impact on children, indefinite immigration detention is damaging for their parents and other adults as well. The impact of immigration detention on the physical and mental health of detainees is well established, with increased levels of anxiety, depression and PTSD.19 Poor parental mental health negatively impacts children’s mental health, leading to further negative outcomes for children.

There are viable alternatives20 to immigration detention. Canada should stop its harmful practice of detaining children and separating families. Evidence-informed community based alternatives to immigration detention include enforcement of specific reporting obligations, the use of cash bonds and guarantors, and suitable risk management programs for more difficult cases. Many countries have prioritized finding alternatives to detention for unaccompanied minors and children and families given the well-documented detrimental impacts immigration detention can have. These alternatives enable authorities to address concerns regarding identity or flight risk without compromising the health of children.

We urge the government of Canada to immediately cease the immigration detention of unaccompanied minors, children, and families, in order to halt the significant harm to children. Children should neither be detained, nor separated from their parents as a result of the detention of their parents. Community-based alternatives to immigration detention should be implemented immediately to protect the best interests of children and children’s right to liberty and family life. It is time for Canada to live up to its moral and legal obligations.

October 4, 2016 (endorsements updated January 24, 2017).

This statement is supported by the following organizations and individuals:Screen Shot 2017-01-24 at 9.07.22 PM.png

The Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers (CARL)

Canadian Council for Refugees Justice for Children and Youth
Ordre des travailleurs sociaux et des thérapeutes conjugaux et familiaux du Québec Amnesty International

Amnistie internationale Canada francophone

L’Association du Barreau canadien/Canadian Bar Association

Refugee Lawyers Association  Refugee Law Office
Office of the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth Ontario Criminal Lawyers Association (CLA)

Children’s Aid Society of Toronto

Peel Children’s Aid Society

FCJ Refugee Centre University of Toronto Department of Pediatrics

Kwame McKenzie, MD, Chair of the Government Relations Committee of the Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto

David White, MD CCFP FCFP Professor & Interim Chair, Family & Community Medicine, University of Toronto

Division of Child and Youth Mental Health, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto

Multicultural Clinic of the Montreal Children’s Hospital Laurence Kirmayer, Division of Transcultural Psychiatry McGill University

Réseau d’intervention auprès des personnes ayant subi la violence organisée (RIVO)

Unité de Pédiatrie Interculturelle du Centre de recherche du CHU-Ste Justine

British Columbia Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) Deepa Mattoo, Legal Director, Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic
Faye Mishna, Dean & Professor, Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work Sociocultural Consultation and Interpretation Services of the Montreal Children’s Hospital

Centre de recherche Sherpa de l’Institut universitaire au regard des communautés culturelles

Inter Clinic Immigration Working Group

Action Refugiés Montréal UNISON Community Legal Clinic
Kensington Bellwoods Community Legal Clinic South Asian Community Legal Clinic of Ontario

Metro Toronto Chinese Southeast Asian Legal Clinic

Rexdale Community Legal Clinic

HIV/AIDS Legal Clinic Ontario

Jewish Refugee Action Network

  Romero House


  1. Mulugeta Abai
  2. Amanda Abate, MD, Toronto
  3. Sakina Abbas, RN, Toronto
  4. Elia Abi-Jaoude, MSc, MD, FRCPC, Staff Psychiatrist, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto
  5. John Abrams, Lawyer, Hamilton
  6. Parul Agarwal, MD, FRCPC, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Toronto
  7. Dr. Yusra Ahmad, MD, FRCPC Psychiatrist affiliated with St. Michael’s Hospital and Women’s College Hospital
  8. Tane Akamatsu, Psychologist, Toronto District School Board, Toronto, ON
  9. Paul Alexander, Barrister, Toronto
  10. Fernando Alvarez, MD Professeur de Pédiatrie Université de Montreal
  11. Shiva Amri, scientist, Toronto
  12. Isabel Anbdariza, MSW, RSW, RP, Toronto
  13. Leslie M. Anderson, Barrister & Solicitor, The Centre for Spanish Speaking Peoples, Toronto, ON
  14. M. Keyshawn Anderson, Barrister & Solicitor, Toronto
  15. Amy Andrews Alexander, MD, MHSc, CCFP, Palliative Care and Psychosocial Oncology, Southlake Regional Cancer Centre, Newmarket
  16. Alison Arnot, MD, FCFP, Lecturer Department of Family & Community Medicine, University of Toronto
  17. Jagpreet Arora, MD, CCFP, Toronto
  18. Alison Ashamalla, MD, CCFP, Toronto
  19. Robin D. Bajer, lawyer, Robin D. Bajer Law Office, Vancouver
  20. Cristina Balaita, Medical Student, University of Toronto
  21. Tian Tian (Phoebe) Bao, MD, University of Toronto
  22. Karin Baqi, Barrister & Solicitor, South Asian Legal Clinic of Ontario
  23. Lucy Barker, MD, Psychiatry Resident, Toronto
  24. J. Barrett
  25. Ahmed Bayoumi, MD, Physician and Professor, University of Toronto
  26. Julie Beauchamp, Articling Student, Refugee Law Office
  27. Caroline Beauregard, professeure suppléante en artthérapie à l’UQAT, Montréal
  28. Dr. Melanie Bechard, Toronto
  29. Michaela Beder, MD, FRCPC, Psychiatrist, Lecturer, University of Toronto, Toronto
  30. Maria Pilar Pia Bejar, Victoria
  31. Coline Bellefleur, Avocate, Montreal
  32. Max Berger, Lawyer, Toronto
  33. Dominique Bergeron, Montreal
  34. Gebre Berihun, Health Promoter
  35. Joanna Berry, Student-at-law, Toronto
  36. Subodh S. Bharati, Barrister & Solicitor, Toronto
  37. Gabrielle Bibas, MD, Pediatric Resident, Vancouver
  38. Anne Biringer, MD, Family Physician, Toronto
  39. Sheila Block, Lawyer, Toronto
  40. Wendell Block, MD, Toronto
  41. Stewart Blott, Board Member ARM, Montreal
  42. Joshua Blum, Barrister & Solicitor, Jared Will & Associates, Toronto
  43. Andrea Bobadilla, PhD(c), Western University, Toronto
  44. Lara Bober, PhD, Charlottetown
  45. Jacqueline Bonisteel, Associate, Corporate Immigration Law Firm, Ottawa
  46. Chris Borst, Program Analyst for Children’s Services, City of Hamilton
  47. Amanda Botelho, Caseworker/Operations, Mennonite Coalition for Refugee Support, Kitchener
  48. Elise Bourgeois-Guérin, psychologue, centre de recherche SHERPA, Montréal
  49. Jane Bourke
  50. Mary Boyce, Barrister & Solicitor, Toronto
  51. Nikki Bozinoff, MD
  52. Mahli Brindamour, MD, FRCPC, General pediatrician, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon
  53. Andrew Brouwer, CS, Barrister and Solicitor, Senior CounselRefugee Law, Legal Aid Ontario, Toronto
  54. Catherine Bruce, Director, Refugee Law Office, Toronto
  55. S. Budd
  56. Verity Buskard, RN(C), Vancouver
  57. Evelyn Calugay
  58. Denise Canso, Policy & Program Manager, Ontario Psychiatric Outreach Program, Toronto
  59. Patricia Cavanagh, MD, FRCPC
  60. Francine Challenger, Analyst, Toronto
  61. Jessica Chandrashekar, PhD Candidate (York University), JD Candidate (Osgoode Hall Law School), Toronto
  62. Nate Charach, Psychiatrist, St. Joseph’s Health Centre, Toronto
  63. Alison Charlebois, MD, Family Physician, Toronto
  64. Timothy Chung, Medical Student, University of Toronto, Toronto
  65. Tom Clark, Member CCR, Toronto
  66. Janet Cleveland, Chercheure et psychologue, Centre de recherche SHERPA (Université McGill), Montréal
  67. Gregory Cohen, MD, Resident in Psychiatry, University of Toronto
  68. Tessa Colthoff, Drs. C. Psych. Assoc.
  69. Victoria Cook, MSc, MD, FRCPC (Pediatrics), Vancouver
  70. Faith Cormier
  71. Micheal Crane, Lawyer, Toronto, ON
  72. Candace Creighton, MD, UBC Paediatric Resident, Vancouver
  73. Tyler Curtis, MD, Family Physician, Toronto
  74. Diana Da Silva, MSW Candidate, York University, Toronto
  75. Aris Daghighian, Barrister & Solicitor, Co-Chair CARL Advocacy Committee
  76. Liz Darling, RM PhD, Midwifery Group of Ottawa, Ottawa
  77. Matthew Davies, OCT, Toronto
  78. George Dei, Professor, OISE
  79. Hannah Deloughery, Toronto
  80. Laila Demirdache, Staff Lawyer, Community Legal Services Ottawa
  81. Avram Denburg, MD, Paediatrician, Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto
  82. Johanna Dennie, Staff Immigration and Refugee Lawyer, Legal Assistance of Windsor, Windsor
  83. James Deutsch, MD, Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Toronto
  84. Elizabeth Docherty, Montreal
  85. Kelly Doctor, Lawyer, Goldblatt Partners LLP
  86. Katie Dorman, MSc MD CCFP, University of Toronto, Toronto
  87. Kathleen Doukas, MD, CCFP
  88. Anna Du Vent
  89. Rose Dymetryszyn, MD, FRCP(C)
  90. Cheryl Eadie, MSW, RSW, Mental Health Social Worker, Inner City Family Health Team, Toronto
  91. Anne Egger, Nurse Practitioner, Toronto
  92. Nadia El Ghandouri, Lawyer, Quebec City
  93. Kent Elson
  94. Gail Erlick Robinson MD, FRCPC
  95. Marie Eykel, comédienne et animatrice, Montréal
  96. Alison Eyre
  97. Gabriel Fabreau MD, MPH, FRCPC, Clinical Assistant Professor, General Internal Medicine, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary
  98. David Fancy, PhD
  99. Jerome Fanmi Olorunpomi
  100. Mike Fazio, MD, Vancouver, BC
  101. Carole Fiore, avocate en immigration, Montreal
  102. Sarah Follett, MD, Sherbourne Health Centre, Toronto
  103. Conchita Fonseca, MD, CFPCEM, Ottawa
  104. Lana Frado, Executive Director, Sound Times Support Services
  105. R.A. Frager, Associate Prof., History Department, McMaster University
  106. Michelle Fraser, MD, CCFP Peterborough, ON
  107. Suleiman Furmli, MD
  108. Gerald F. Gabriel, Lay Pastoral Associate, RC Diocese of Charlottetown, Charlottetown PEI
  109. Amy Gajaria, MD, Psychiatry resident, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Toronto
  110. Miriam Garfinkle, MD, Toronto
  111. Denise Gastaldo, associate professor, University of Toronto, Toronto
  112. Melinda Gayda, Lawyer, Refugee Law Office, Legal Aid Ontario, Toronto
  113. Sharon Gazeley, MD, FCFP, Family Physician, Toronto
  114. Nir Gepner, Staff Lawyer, Willowdale Community Legal Services
  115. Marcy Gerstein
  116. David Gifuni, medical student, Western University, London
  117. James Gildiner, Barrister and Solicitor, Toronto
  118. Avvy Go, lawyer
  119. Ritika Goel, MD, MPH, CCFP, Family Physician and Lecturer, University of Toronto, Toronto
  120. Tyler Goettl, Barrister & Solicitor, Toronto
  121. Luin Goldring, Professor of Sociology, York University
  122. Brydon Gombay, Ed. D., Retired Community Psychologist, Toronto
  123. Daniel Gorman, MD, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto
  124. John Graham-Pole, Emeritus Professor of Pediatrics
  125. Daniela Graziano, MSc, Women’s College Hospital, Toronto
  126. Mia Grillakis, Registered Nurse OIIQ, Montreal
  127. Hanna Gros, Senior Fellow at the International Human Rights Program at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Law
  128. Lara Guest, Lawyer, Toronto
  129. August Guillaume, Edmonton, Retired
  130. Melini Gupta, MD, Toronto
  131. Christina Gural, Lawyer, Toronto
  132. Gordon Guyatt, MD, Distinguished University Professor, McMaster University, Hamilton
  133. Jaswant Guzder, MD, McGill Professor of Psychiatry
  134. Ken Harrison, MD, Reconnect Community Health Services
  135. Salwa Hasan, medical student, Toronto
  136. Nikki Healey, Social Worker
  137. Guida Heir, Immigration and Refugee Lawyer, Vancouver
  138. Helly, professeur, INRS, Montréal
  139. Margaret Hennig, Kitchener
  140. Ryan Herriot, MD, CCFP, Family Physician and Clinical Instructor, UBC Department of Family Practice
  141. Manisha Hladio, MD, Family Medicine Resident, Hamilton
  142. Norrie Hodge, Retired, Delta, British Columbia
  143. Jacqueline Holiff, MD, Child & Adolescent Psychiatry Resident, University of Toronto, Toronto
  144. Tim Holland, M.D, Halifax
  145. Debbie Honickman, MD, MDPAC Creemore
  146. Barb Hood, NP
  147. Jia Hu, MD, Toronto
  148. Charles Hui, MD, FRCPC, Chief of Infectious Diseases, Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, Associate Professor, University of Ottawa, Ottawa
  149. Katrina Hui, MD,Resident Physician, Toronto
  150. Andrea Hunter, MD, FRCPC, Associate Professor, Pediatrics, McMaster University
  151. Julia Huys, Barrister and Solicitor, Street Youth Legal Services, Toronto
  152. Melissa Tierney, Calgary, AB
  153. Stella Iriah, Barrister & Solicitor, RLA Member, Toronto
  154. Andrew Irvine, MD, BC Children’s Hospital, Vancouver
  155. Beverley Jackson, MD, CCFP, Toronto
  156. Zahra Jaffer, MB, ChB, CCFP Family Physician, Weeneebayko General Hospital
  157. Annie Jaimes, MA, PhDc, UQAM et CIUSSS CentreOuest de l’Ile de Montréal, Montréal
  158. Martyna A. Janjua, PhD candidate, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Toronto
  159. Brandy Jensen
  160. Marcella Jones, Medical Student, University of Toronto
  161. Jonathon W. Jurmain
  162. Joyce Kalsen, Executive Director, Ancaster, ON
  163. Menaka Kanendran, Refugee Law Office, Toronto
  164. Sumaya Karimi, Program Coordinator (Afghan Women’s Organization)
  165. Zehra Kavame, Administrative Coordinator-Action Réfugiés Montréal
  166. Bushra Khan, MD Candidate 2018, McMaster University, Hamilton
  167. Sumeet Khanna, MD, Toronto
  168. Sean Kidd, Ph.D., Associate Professor, University of Toronto, Department of Psychiatry, Toronto
  169. Christopher Kitamura, MD, Psychiatrist, University of Toronto
  170. Dr. Linda Klapwyk, MD, CCFP, FCFP Family Physician
  171. Diana Kljenak, MD, Ontario Psychiatric Association President
  172. Andrew Koch, Health Planner, Unison Health & Community Services
  173. Sophia Koukoui, chercheur postdoctoral en pédopsychiatrie transculturelle, Université McGill, Montréal
  174. Rachel Kronick, MD, FRCPC, MSc, Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry, McGill University, Division of Child Psychiatry, Jewish General Hospital, Montreal
  175. Ekta Kumar, Montreal
  176. George Kurien, Toronto
  177. Sameer Kushwaha, BSc, MD Candidate (2018), Toronto
  178. Cathy Lace, Lawyer, Goldblatt Partners, Toronto
  179. Audrey L-Lachaîne, Stagiaire postdoctorante SHERPA, Montréal
  180. Janique Johnson-Lafleur, Coordonnatrice de recherche, Centre de recherche SHERPA, Montréal, Québec
  181. Justin Lam, Medical Student, Toronto
  182. Dorothy Lander, Professor Antigonish
  183. Aria Laskin, Lawyer, Toronto
  184. Samara Laskin, MD, Paediatric Resident Physician, BC Children’s Hospital, Vancouver
  185. Jessica Leah, MD, Toronto
  186. Mary Jo Leddy, Order of Canada
  187. Victoria Lee, MD, Psychiatrist, Toronto
  188. Peggy Lee, Immigration Lawyer, Vancouver
  189. Janet Lee-Evoy MD, Psychiatry Resident, University of Toronto
  190. Jaime Lefebvre, Lawyer at South Ottawa Community Legal Services, Ottawa
  191. Annick Legault, avocate, Montréal
  192. Sabine Lehr, Associate Faculty, Royal Roads University, Victoria
  193. Joel Lexchin MD, FCFP, University Health Network, Toronto
  194. Esther Lexchin, Barrister and Solicitor, Toronto
  195. Benjamin Liston, Staff Lawyer, Refugee Law Office
  196. Hung-tat Lo, MD, Hong Fook Mental Health Association, Toronto
  197. Samuel Loeb, Barrister and Solicitor, Toronto
  198. Clifford Luyt
  199. Alex A. MacDonald, Medical Student, University of Toronto, Toronto
  200. Anousheh Machouf, Psychologue, CIUSSS Centre Ouest, Montréal
  201. Donna MacLachlan, MD
  202. Ruth MacLeod, RN Community Health
  203. Dr. Athena Madan, University of Toronto
  204. Julie Maggi, MD, FRCPC, St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto
  205. Minoo Mahmoudi, MD, FRCPC, staff psychiatrist at Youthdale Treatment Centre, Toronto
  206. Mayoori Malankov, student-atlaw, South Asian Legal Clinic of Ontario
  207. Roy Male, MD, Regent Park Community Health Centre, Toronto
  208. Arfeen Malick, MSc, MD, Resident Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Toronto
  209. Lucy Manchester, MD, Toronto
  210. Kathleen Manion, Assistant Professor, School of Humanitarian, Royal Roads University Studies, Royal Roads University
  211. Alyssa Manning, Refugee Law Office
  212. Karen Manzo, Refugee Law Office, Toronto
  213. Kristin Marshall, Lawyer, Toronto
  214. Azad Mashari, MD, FRCPC, Anesthesiologist, Department of Anesthesia and Pain Management, Toronto General Hospital, Toronto
  215. Caitlin Maxwell, Principal Lawyer, Equity Legal/Staff Lawyer, Barbra Schlifer Commemorative Clinic
  216. Cornelia Mazgarean, Review Counsel in the Immigration Division at the Community and Legal Aid Services Programme, Osgoode Hall Law School
  217. Clifford McCarten, Lawyer at McCarten Wallace Litigation, Toronto
  218. Susan McGrath C.M., PhD, Professor, Centre for Refugee Studies, York University
  219. Jenn McIntyre, Romero House Director, Toronto
  220. Elizabeth McWeeny, CM, Former President of Canadian Council for Refugees, Thunder Bay
  221. Elise Mercier, Student, Osgoode Hall Law School, Toronto
  222. Colin Meyer-Macaulay MD, FRCPC, General Pediatrician and Critical Care Fellow
  223. Shafiq Mohamed MD, University of Toronto Family Medicine Resident, Barrie
  224. Petra Molnar, Toronto
  225. Sheila Monteiro, Barrister and Solicitor, Toronto
  226. Soraya Mumtaz, MD, FRCPC, Psychiatrist, Toronto
  227. Alpna Munshi, MD, Toronto
  228. Samer Muscati, Director of the International Human Rights Program at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Law
  229. Alexandra Musten
  230. Mariam Naguib, MD Candidate 2020
  231. Sideeka Narayan RN, MPH
  232. Kathy Nash, Nurse Practitioner, Regent Park CHC, Toronto
  233. Omaira Naweed
  234. Krista Nerland, Lawyer, Toronto
  235. Heather Neufeld, Barrister and Solicitor
  236. Adeena Niazi, Executive Director, AWO, Toronto
  237. Elena Nica-Graham, MD, Psychiatrist, Toronto
  238. Dr. Shelly Nixon, OACAS, Toronto
  239. Oluwakemi Oduwole, Barrister & Solicitor, Toronto
  240. Catherine Oliver, MD, Family Physician, Toronto
  241. Feyisayo Oni, Immigration Law Division Leader at CLASP, Toronto
  242. Jeremy Opolsky, Lawyer, Toronto
  243. Joanne Opsteen, PHC-NP, Toronto, Ontario
  244. Guylaine Ouimette, présidente – Ordre des travailleurs sociaux et des thérapeutes conjugaux et familiaux du Québec
  245. Oscar E. Palma, Barrister & Solicitor, Ottawa, ON
  246. Crystal Pang, chiropodist, EECH, Toronto
  247. Anne-Claire Pâquet-De Varennes, fellow en pédiatrie sociale à l’Hôpital de Montréal pour Enfants, Montréal
  248. Rosalinda Paredes, Community Legal Worker
  249. Olivia Parkes, MSW, RSW, Toronto
  250. Nick Parle
  251. Sabrina Pascoe, Toronto
  252. Llijah Pearce, Registered Nurse at St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto
  253. Madison Pearlman, Law Student, Winnipeg
  254. Jeanette Pedersen, Calgary
  255. N. Perez, MD, Toronto
  256. Chelsea Peterdy, Barrister and Solicitor, Refugee Law Office, Legal Aid Ontario
  257. Norbert Piché, Directeur national du Service jésuite des réfugiés, Montréal
  258. Cassandra Porter, Lawyer, Goldblatt Partners LLP, Toronto
  259. Emma Preston, BSc, PhD, MDCM, Family Medicine Resident, Vancouver
  260. Anna Purkey, Assistant Professor, Legal Studies, St. Jerome’s University, Waterloo
  261. Debbie Rachlis, Lawyer, Lorne Waldman Professional Corporation, Toronto
  262. Ashley Raeside, Medical Student, University of Toronto
  263. Howard Ramos, Professor of Sociology, Dalhousie University, Halifax
  264. Katherine Ramsey, Barrister & Solicitor, Refugee Law Office, Toronto
  265. Nicolas Ranger – Avocat Bureau des services juridiques intégrés d’Ottawa – Aide juridique Ontario
  266. Meb Rashid, MD, CCFP, Toronto
  267. Paula Ravitz MD, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, University of Toronto
  268. Danyaal Raza, MD MPH CCFP, Family Physician, Toronto
  269. Sarah Reaburn, RN (C), Vancouver, Coast Salish Territories
  270. Vanessa Redditt, MD, CCFP, Family Physician, Toronto
  271. Allison Rhoades, Barrister and Solicitor, Refugee Law Office
  272. Michael Richardson, Family Physician, Toronto
  273. Marie-Lyne Roc, travailleuse sociale, Chargée d’affaires professionnelles, OTSTCFQ, Montréal
  274. Myanca Rodrigues, Medical Student, Toronto
  275. Lyn Rondeau, MSW, RSW, Vancouver
  276. Matthew Roorda, PhD, PEng, Professor of Civil Engineering, University of Toronto
  277. Daniel Rosenbaum, MD, Resident, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto
  278. Cécile Rousseau Professeur Université McGill, Montréal
  279. Jennifer Ryan, Barrister and Solicitor, Toronto
  280. Geraldine Sadoway, Barrister & Solicitor, Toronto
  281. Najib Safieddine, MD, Thoracic Surgeon, Assistant Professor, University of Toronto
  282. Giselle Salinas, Lawyer at Salinas Law, Toronto
  283. Leigh Salsberg, Lawyer, Toronto
  284. Deanna Santos, Lawyer, Markham, Ontario
  285. Macdonald Scott, Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant Carranza LLP
  286. Marie Serdynska, Coordinator, Sociocultural Consultation and Interpretation Services
  287. Silvia Serpas, MSW Candidate, Kitchener
  288. Ashley Sharpe, RN, PHC, Halifax
  289. Omid Shearkhani, HBSc, Medical Student, University of Toronto, Toronto
  290. Hasan Sheikh, MD, Emergency Medicine, Toronto
  291. Alexandra Shelley, Lawyer, Toronto
  292. Ivan Silver, MD, Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto
  293. Dr. Stephanie J. Silverman
  294. Aaron Silverman, MD, University of Toronto
  295. Joan Simalchik, Professor and Director, Women and Gender Studies, University of Toronto Mississauga
  296. Anne Smart Educator, JGH Child Psychiatry, Montreal
  297. Brenna Sobanski, Refugee Settlement Worker, Romero House, Toronto
  298. Melanie Spence, RN, Toronto
  299. Arianne St Jacques, MD Resident in Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Toronto
  300. Debra Stein, MD, FRCPC Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Hincks Dellcrest Centre, Toronto
  301. Jim Sugiyama, MD
  302. Michelle Sultan, MD, Mississauga
  303. Anjum Sultana, MPH, public health professional
  304. Nadiya Sunderji, MD MPH FRCPC, Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto
  305. Alia Sunderji, MD, Pediatrics Resident, University of Toronto
  306. Zafir Syed
  307. Me Suzanne Taffot, Lawyer, Montreal
  308. Sherry Telford
  309. Pierre-Andre Theriault, Barrister and Solicitor, Toronto
  310. Mary Thibodeau, Student-atLaw, Toronto
  311. Karina Thompson, Barrister & Solicitor, Toronto
  312. Mara Tietzen, MD, Vancouver
  313. Susan Tilley, Professor, Brock University St. Catharines
  314. Biljana Vasilevska, Research Coordinator, McMaster University, Hamilton ON
  315. Ketan Vegda, MD, Psychiatrist, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
  316. Francisco Villegas, Assistant Professor, Kalamazoo College, Kalamazoo, Michigan
  317. Alan Wai, MD, Toronto
  318. Simon Wallace, Lawyer, Toronto
  319. Annie Wang, Medical Student, University of Toronto, Toronto
  320. Nastasia Wasilewski, Medical Student, University of Toronto, Toronto
  321. Priya Watson, MD, Child & Adolescent Psychiatrist, Toronto
  322. Ashley Wazana, MD, Child Psychiatrist, McGill University, Montreal
  323. Richard Wazana, Lawyer, Toronto
  324. Madeleine Wazana, Toronto
  325. Jacqueline Weiss, MD, Child Psychiatrist, Youthdale Treatment Centre, Toronto
  326. Don Wells, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Labour Studies and Political Science, McMaster University, Hamilton
  327. Russ Weninger, Lawyer, Calgary
  328. Sheila Wijayasinghe, MD, CCFP Family Physician and Lecturer, University of Toronto
  329. Virginia Wilson, Community Legal Worker, Refugee Law Office
  330. Robyn Winterbottom, MD, Resident in Psychiatry, University of Toronto
  331. Mieszko J. Wlodarczyk, Barrister & Solicitor, CLA, RLA, CARL, Toronto
  332. Mandy Wojcik, Lawyer, Toronto
  333. Angela Wong, Staff Lawyer at Metro Toronto Chinese & Southeast Asian Legal Clinic, Toronto
  334. Susan Woolhouse, Family Physician, Toronto
  335. Vanessa Wright, NP-PHC, Toronto
  336. Edward Xie MD, Toronto
  337. Sarah Yachison, PhD Candidate, Toronto
  338. Mary Yang, MD, University of Toronto
  339. Joyce Yedid, Attorney, Montreal
  340. Judy Young Drache, ret’d public servant, Ottawa
  341. Farzana Yusuf, Community health Worker, Toronto
  342. Marcia Zemans, MD, FRCPC, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Assistant Professor, University of Toronto, Toronto
  1. These figures do not account for all children who are not subject to formal detention orders, but are de facto detainees alongside their parent(s). Canada Border Services Agency, “Minors in detention – by client status” (4 November 2015) (obtained through access to information request by IHRP, A-2015-15845/MZM).
  2. International Human Rights Program, UN Human Rights Committee’s 2015 Concluding Observation on Canada, online: University of Toronto Faculty of Law, International Human Rights Program http://ihrp.law.utoronto.ca/un-human-rights-committees-2015-review-canada
  3. “Detention centres no place for migrant children, critics argue”, CBC News (14 December 2012) online: CBC News Canada http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/detention-centres-no-place-for-migrant-children-critics-argue-1.1169993
  4. “Glory Anawa’s [sic] shares her story from a [sic] immigrant detention centre”, CBC Radio (24 January 2015) (interview) online: CBC Radio, DNTO with Sook-Yin Lee http://www.cbc.ca/radio/dnto/glory-anawa-s-shares-her-story-from-a-immigrant-detention-centre-1.2926970
  5. Carmen Cheung & Samer Muscati, “An Inexcusable Travesty: Canada sent a Syrian Minor to Solitary Confinement”, Opinion-Editorial, The Globe and Mail (17 February 2016) online: Globe and Mail http://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/an-inexcusable-travesty-canadasent-a-syrian-minor-to-solitary-confinement/article28781118/
  6. Rachel Kronick, Cécile Rousseau & Janet Cleveland, “Asylum-seeking Children’s Experiences of Detention in Canada: A Qualitative Study” (2015) 85:3 American Journal of Orthopsychiatry 287.
  7. Ann Lorek et al, “The Mental and Physical Health Difficulties of Children Held Within a British Immigration Detention Center: A Pilot Study” (2009) 33 Child Abuse & Neglect 573 https://www.childrenssociety.org.uk/sites/default/files/tcs/research_docs/Yarl%27sWoodDoctor%27sReport.pdf
  8. Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, RSC 2001, c 27 http://laws.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/i-2.5/fulltext.html
  9. Ibid s 25.
  10. Ibid s 60.
  11. United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Beyond Detention: A Global Strategy to support governments to end the detention of asylum-seekers and refugees, online: UNHCR http://www.unhcr.org/53aa929f6
  12. United Nations Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights, Report of the 2012 Day of General Discussion: The Rights of all Children in the Context of International Migration, online: UNOHCHR http://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/crc/docs/discussion2012/ReportDGDChildrenAndMigration2012.pdf
  13. Ibid at 18.
  14. François Crépeau, Any detention of migrant children is a violation of their rights and must end, (7 September 2016) online: theconversation.com, https://theconversation.com/any-detention-of-migrant-children-is-a-violation-of-their-rights-and-must-end-64985
  15. Universal Declaration of Human Rights, GA Res 217 (III), UNGAOR, 3d Sess, Supp No 13, UN Doc A/810, (1948) http://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/
  16. Convention on the Rights of the Child, Treaty Series 1577 (1989), 3, online: UNOHCHR http://www.ohchr.org/en/professionalinterest/pages/crc.aspx
  17. Child and Family Services Act, RSO 1990, Chapter c 11, s 1(2).
  18. Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act, RSA 2000, c C-12, s 2; Child, Family and Community Service Act, RSBC 1996, c 46, s 2, 4; Child and Family Services Act, CCSM c C80, Preamble, s.2(1); Family Services Act, SNB 1983, c F-2.2, Preamble, s 1; Children and Youth Care and Protection Act, SNL2010, c C-12.2, s. 9(2); Children and Family Services Act, SNS 1990, c 5, s 2, 3(2); Child Protection Act, SPEI 2000, c 3 (2nd Sess), Preamble; Youth Protection Act, CQLR, c P-34.1, s 4; Child and Family Services Act, SS 1989-90, c C-7.2, s 3.
  19. Janet Cleveland & Cécile Rousseau, “Psychiatric Symptoms Associated with Brief Detention of Adult Asylum Seekers in Canada” (2013) 58:7 Canadian Journal of Psychiatry 409.
  20. International Detention Coalition, There are Alternatives: A Handbook for Preventing Unnecessary Immigration Detention (Revised Edition), online: http://idcoalition.org/publication/view/there-are-alternatives-revised-edition/