fbpx

Support refugees fleeing persecution and genocide

As a community with a history of fleeing persecution, Jewish Canadians have played a significant role in supporting refugees. Through synagogues and agencies such as Jewish Immigrant Aid Services Toronto, Jewish Canadians have sponsored many refugees, including Yazidis, Syrians, and others, fleeing religious persecution.  

Since 2016, the Chinese Government has committed ongoing mass atrocities against the Uyghur people in East Turkistan. A confidential Chinese government document suggests there may be up to 1,400 extrajudicial internment facilities in total, excluding prisons with capacity for up to 30,000 detainees. 

The Government of China acknowledged that, between 2014 and 2019, an average of 1.29 million people in the region per year have undergone “vocational training,” a euphemism for forced stays in detention facilities. Reports have documented that the Uyghur people are subjected to extreme physical and mental torture in concentration camps as well as to forced labour, mass rape, enforced disappearances, frequent deaths, and organ harvesting. China’s cruel treatment of the Uyghur people meets all criteria to be labeled a genocide under the UN Genocide Convention. 

When faith or ethnic communities are targeted for genocide, or sexual minorities subjected to capital punishment, Canada’s refugee system must offer a safe haven, and Canada must act to condemn genocide. 

Recommendations

Continuing support of those targeted for their identity, such as Christians and Yazidis in Iraq, LGBTQ2+ people in Chechnya and Iran, Rohingyas in Myanmar, and Uyghurs in China, while the government works to improve and accelerate the refugee process. 

Drawing on Canadian civil society partners as sponsors and volunteers in supporting emergency initiatives to protect targeted minorities, as with the Private Sponsorship of Refugees Program.

Condemning unequivocally the Uyghur genocide and working with partners in the international community to demand the closure of the concentration camps where they are interned. 

Invoking the “Magnitsky Act” to hold perpetrators of violence responsible for their crimes against Uyghurs and working to protect the safety and security of Canadian citizens of Uyghur origin and their families. 

Question for Candidates

Will you ensure the government continues to support refugees who are targeted for genocide or persecution?

Election Resources

CIJA has been working with Elections Canada to protect democratic participation for Jewish Canadians. As with past elections, in this election, citizens will have many ways and days to vote.