Villes sanctuaires au Canada: pratiques, besoins et politiques

This project aims to better understand the official and informal practices associated with the concept of sanctuary in Canada and, above all, to support the actors on the ground in the implementation of such practices. Although the term "sanctuary city" is "highly evocative, there is no unambiguous and legal definition" (Paquet, 2018, 11). In Canada, this notion refers to policies allowing access to public services without regard to immigration status (Bauder 2017, Hudson et al., 2017). without status communications with federal migration authorities (Hudson et al., 2017). In Canada, the concept of sanctuary city also seems to encompass other public interventions, such as welcoming city discourses and the distribution of information (eg Montreal 2017). The specific objectives of this project are:

  1. To develop an ingrained understanding of what sanctuary practices can be in the Canadian context, based on the meaning given by the actors and on the political and institutional context;
  2. The identification of promising practices related to the implementation of sanctuary policies in the Canadian context;
  3. The development of accessible tools for stakeholders (municipalities and service delivery organizations).

  • 1 Research report at IMRU
  • 4 scientific publications:
    1. "Getting to Sanctuary: The Box of Canada" for International Migration Review,
    2. "The challenge of translating concepts: sanctuary policies in Canada" for Canadian Public Administration,
    3. "The Sanctuary City: The Case of Quebec" forPolitics and Society,
    4. "Sanctuary Practices in Canada: A Survey" Paquet for Canadian Journal of Political Science
  • 4 Tools of information for the actors in the field (all available in French and English, available in paper version but also in free access version):
    1. A website on sanctuary practices in Canada, including adapted resources (this site web will be hosted on Concordia University's Research Chair on the New Immigration Policy, led by Mireille Paquet)
    2. An information guide on the concept of sanctuary in the Canadian context for a government and community audience;
    3. A "how to ..." guide on promising practices and implementation pitfalls;
    4. A visual guide on precarious statuses and trajectories that could lead to precarious status.
  • 3 dissemination activities:
    1. A day of reflection on the results and discussion with stakeholders in Montreal (filmed and made available) perennially on the project site),
    2. A day of reflection on the results and discussion with stakeholders in Toronto (filmed and available available on a permanent basis on the project site) and
    3. 2 workshops at the Conference International Metropolis 2019 (Ottawa / Gatineau). This conference was selected for the ability to involve several IRMU members but also to confirm best practices with international specialists

Based on multiple conversations among team members (including at the BMRC-IRMU Strategy meeting on June 8-9, 2017), we propose a framework built on three interrelated and complementary analytical lenses. The proposed Transversal project 1 will focus on the structures of governance and policy discourse of the three levels of government and will provide the bases for the other two (to be developed later):

  • Transversal project 1:
    1. High level analysis of governance structures and policy discourse (duration: 18 months, September 2017-February 2019)
    2. Governance: Jurisdictions/institutional arrangements at various levels and changes over time
    3. Policy discourse: How is resilience used by the state and framed in policy documents?
    4. Develop a common methodology to address these across six city networks, two provinces, and at the federal level of government
  • Transversal project 2: Examination of institutional practices and experiences
    1. How is notion of resilience implemented/taken up by policy makers?
    2. What are the impacts on/strategies of policy/programme design, development, and/or implementation?
  • Transversal project 3:
    1. Impacts on settlement sector and practitioners
    2. How is notion of resilience implemented/taken up by settlement sector organizations and practitioners?
    3. What are the impacts on/strategies of nonprofits/service providers?

  • Mireille Paquet (Principal investigator).
  • Collaborators
    • Meghan Joy (Concordia, Montreal)
    • John Shields (Ryerson, Toronto)
    • Graham Hudson (Ryerson, Toronto)
    • Idil Atak (Ryerson, Toronto)
  • Community Partners
    • BINAM
    • TCRI
    • Stewart Istvanffy Legal Study