Peterborough Council of Canadians Chapter members joined End Immigration Detention Peterborough for a gathering downtown on Tuesday in solidarity with immigration detainees who recently ended their hunger strike, before rallying at Lindsay's Central East Correctional Centre.
The Peterborough Examiner reports that at the Correctional Centre “they demonstrated for about an hour to show their support for some 50 detainees who ended a hunger strike that began July 11. More than two dozen protestors descended on the facility, where they read poetry, banged drums and pots and walked the perimeter. Chants supporters repeated included 'Stop the detention. End the deportation. We don't want to live in a racist nation' and 'The strike is over. The Struggle continues.'"
Peterborough Chapter member Roy Brady explained that the group of over two dozen supporters did not back down after meeting some resistance from a correctional officer. “Following three previous visits when we banged, cheered, demonstrated around most of the perimeter, a correctional official outlined that we could not do that [on Tuesday]. Following a sharing of support, short speeches on the politics and humanity involved, what did we do - we marched around the perimeter, not receiving the trespass orders originally threatened.”
The Council of Canadians opposes the horrific practice of indefinite immigration detention. Hundreds are currently being jailed indefinitely without charges or trial in Canada, many in maximum security prisons. They don’t have access to legal counsel, faith services, doctors or psychologists. Many of the detainees at the Lindsay Correctional Centre are locked up in a small shared cell for 18 to 21 hours a day – only allowed out in to a slightly bigger cell for a few hours. Many of those who were on hunger strike throughout July were locked up in segregation.
See more of our writing on the subject here.
All photos by the Peterborough Examiner.