Remember the Underground Railway

In defense of human smuggling, for the free movement of people

“Throughout the political jockeying and the manufactured media circus that surrounded the arrival of the Tamil migrants aboard the Ocean Lady and the MV Sun Sea, “human smuggling” has consistently been framed as an unquestioned evil, a practice that must be combated through anti-smuggling legislation and criminal punishment.

We reject this presumption.

Migration is one form of resistance to the displacement, destruction, and desperation that the forces of war, environmental havoc and global capitalism produce across the world.

It is the creation, control, and policing of international/colonial borders that forces people to travel on foot, by air and by water, in the night, across torturous terrains, in dangerous conditions and using forged documents.

At a time when Canada shuts down most avenues to full immigration status, denies most refugee claims, exploits poor and working people of colour as temporary workers and tries to detain and deport its undocumented residents – we insist that human smuggling is not a crime.”

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