METRAC is an anti-violence organization. We abhor mistreatment, abuse and violence of any form, because violence often leads to the loss of human dignity, and causes suffering, trauma and loss of life. This weekend presents a case in point, and we are deeply disturbed and repulsed by what we have witnessed.
On Sunday, a gunman opened fire during prayer time at a Mosque in Ste-Foy, Québec at the Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec, killing six people and injuring five others who are fighting for their lives. Those attending prayer at the time were mothers, fathers, children, workers, loved ones and community members. We remember Azzeddine Soufiane, Khaled Belkacemi, Aboubaker Thabti, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Ibrahima Barry and Abdelkrim Hassane.
Further, recent developments across the border resulted in an immediate ban that haphazardly restricted travel from seven predominantly Muslim nations. This action immediately affected countless Muslim families and communities, stranding newcomers, refugees and citizens, causing stress and harm to already persecuted and criminalized communities.
METRAC’s vision is “A Safe Ontario for Women, A Safe World for All”. In this spirit, we stand united with communities affected by state-sanctioned discrimination and by racist violence. We extend our love and support to the families of the victims in Ste-Foy, to the injured and their loved ones, and to the survivors of the traumatic event this past weekend.
We extend support to Muslim women and youth who might face increased harassment and violence because of their religion, skin color, sexual orientation, disability, gender or cultural background. We cannot be silent and welcome others to safely speak out in situations of discrimination, intolerance, and hate against Muslims and all faith groups.
If you are an immigrant woman or a refugee who wants to learn more about your legal rights, you can:
- Visit the Ontario Women’s Justice Network’s section on Immigrant Women: http://owjn.org/owjn_2009/jasons-test-submenu-page/209; and
- The Family Law Education for Women materials about Family Law Issues for Immigrant, Refugee and non-Status Women, as well as resources for Muslim women: http://www.onefamilylaw.ca/