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Publié le mercredi 06 juin 2018 par Céline Guilleux


Join researchers, advocates, lawyers, clinicians, decision-makers and migrants from around the world to explore global trends and avenues for change in immigration detention. Drawing on experiences of detention and resistance in multiple countries, we will discuss strategies to challenge migrant detention, including research, litigation and community mobilization.



Join researchers, advocates, lawyers, clinicians, decision-makers and migrants from around the world to explore global trends and avenues for change in immigration detention.  Drawing on experiences of detention and resistance in multiple countries, we will discuss strategies to challenge migrant detention, including research, litigation and community mobilization. 

As forcible displacement increases, notions of the unwanted “Other”, the “illegal” migrant, and the “bogus” refugee are increasingly prominent in public discourse of destination countries, lending support to stringent border control policies whereby States incarcerate asylum seekers, undocumented migrants and other foreign nationals in immigration detention centres, prisons and camps. This structural violence primarily targets racialized populations from the Global South, including children.

This international conference brings together researchers, advocates, lawyers, clinicians, decision-makers and migrants to explore global trends and avenues for change in immigration detention. Drawing on experiences of detention and resistance in multiple countries, we will discuss strategies to challenge migrant detention, including research, litigation and community mobilization.

Speakers include

  • François Crépeau, McGill University, former UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants
  • Jacqueline Bhabha, Harvard University;
  • Mary Bosworth, University of Oxford;
  • Jean-Nicolas Beuze, UNHCR;
  • Guglielmo Schinina, IOM; representatives of the International Detention Coalition, Human Rights Watch, Human Rights First, End Immigration Detention Network, and many others

Topics include

  • Detention of children
  • Migrant voices: former detainees speak out
  • Mental health impact of immigration detention
  • Migrants’ experiences at the US/Mexico border
  • Resistance to deportation and detention in Israel, Italy and Greece
  • Fortress Europe: From the Balkans route to Mediterranean hotspots
  • Detention of migrants in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Australia
  • Racialization and Othering in the detention process
  • Innovative judicial remedies, from habeas corpus to Charter damages
  • Strategies for minimizing immigration detention in Canada


Organized by

Sherpa Research Centre and McGill Division of Social & Transcultural Psychiatry


  • UNHCR, McGill University Oppenheimer Chair in Public International Law,
  • University of Toronto International Human Rights Program,
  • University of Oxford Border Criminologies,
  • l’Association québécoise des avocats et avocates en droit de l’immigration


ASI Preconference June 19

Jewish General Hospital - Institute of Community and Family Psychiatry

4333 Côte Ste-Catherine Road, Montreal

Advanced Study Institute (ASI) Pre-conference Advance registration required*

7:00 pm - 9:00 pm Open to public on registration

  • Cécile Rousseau : Opening remarks
  • Jacqueline Bhabha: Migration and detention of unaccompanied  children
  • Sarah Mares: Detention of children in Australia and harm to mental health Michael Bochenek: Immigration detention of children and families in the U.S.
  • Rachel Kronick: Recent developments regarding child detention in Canada

9:00 am - 4:30 pm

  • Laurence Kirmayer : Opening remarks Andriani Fili: Detention in Greece
  • Daniela DeBono: Hotspots at the EU’s Mediterranean border
  • Kyli Hedrick: Self-harm among asylum seekers detained in Australia
  • Blerina Kellezi: Barriers to use of mental health services in UK Immigration Removal Centres
  • Mary Bosworth: Emotional and ethical challenges of  immigration  detention  research
  • Hanna Gros et Samer Muscati : Advocacy strategies in Canada
  • Francesca Esposito : Organizing to defend the rights of migrant women in Italian detention centres
  • Robyn Sampson: Overview of global advocacy campaigns Mike Flynn: The Global Immigration Detention Observatory

*The Advanced Study Institute Workshop is intended for researchers, practitioners and advocates working on immigration detention issues. Spaces are limited. If you are interested in taking part in the workshop, please contact Marie-Eve Paré, coordinator, with a brief description of your interests regarding immigration detention at marie-

June 20

Plenary : Detention in the context of broader migration policies

  • 8:30 am - 10:00 am François Crépeau : Detention in the context of broader migration policies Eleanor Acer: U.S. immigration policies on detention and deportation Former detainee: (TBD)

Block A: Concurrent Workshop

10:15 am - 12:15 pm

  • Detention of children
  • Maciej Fagasinski: Alternatives to detention of children in Southeast Asia
  • Stephen Phillips: Mental health impact of immigration detention on child asylum seekers and the enabling role  of international human rights law
  • Sarah Mares: Fifteen years of detaining children and families who seek asylum in Australia
  • Delphine Nakache, Hanna Gros & Stephanie Silverman: Is your government doing its best to protect migrant children? Canada's scorecard

Racialization and othering as justifications for detention

  • Maayan Ravid: Israel as a case study of ethnic-exclusionary logic
  • Lizzy Wilmington: Resistance to the UK hostile environment to people with insecure immigration status  Bahar Banaei: Corporeal punishment and Canadian liberalism: an examination of EbrahimToure’s and Alvin Brown’s detentions

Experiences of detention and resistance in europe

  • Oria Gargano: Upholding women's rights in immigration detention centers: a feminist approach
  • Francesca Esposito: Immigration detention in Italy: data from the field
  • Andriani Fili; The maze of the Greek immigration detention system

12:15 pm - 1:15 pm Lunch: Provided on-site

1:15 pm - 3:15 pm

Block B: Concurrent Workshop

Immigration detention in the context of securitisation of migration

  • Philippe Bourdeau: Immigration detention and securitisation of migration
  • Colin Grey: The legal and moral justification of immigration detention
  • Molly Joeck: Use of detention as a tool of deterrence and coercion
  • Sherrie Kossoudji: Different country, different context, same detention

Activism and resistance to migrant detention and deportation in Israel

  • Demoz Dawit: First-hand account of organizing in asylum-seeking communities, resettlement and continued activism in Canada
  • Laurie Tikue: Experience of international activists in promoting women's rights in detention
  • Maayan Ravid: Fighting alongside asylum seeking communities to resist one’s own government policies on detention and migration penalization
  • Noa Galili: Advocacy in Israel against deportation of migrant children

Ethnographies of detention in Africa and Asia

  • Kazue Takamura: Visualizing human rights of detained foreigners: the emerging role of detainee support groups in Japan
  • Cristiano d'Orsi: Detention and deportation of undocumented migrants in South Africa: breaching human rights?
  • Joyce Acquah: Violence in Buduburam Refugee Camp in Ghana: Forms, sources and consequences

Mental health of detained migrants

  • Kyli Hedrick: Kept at harm’s length? A mixed methods study of the incidence and characteristics of self-harm  in the Australian-funded asylum seeker population
  • Eric G. Jarvis: Negotiating space for institutional empathy toward detained asylum seekers with mental health problems
  • Alice Gerlach: Women in UK immigration detention: justice, privacy, individuality and autonomy

3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Block C: Concurrent Workshop

  • Experiences and resistance to immigration detention in Canada
  • Closed to government and media
  • People who have been held in immigration detention in Canada talk about their experience of detention and resistance (details to follow)

Challenging the legality of immigration detention in Canada

  • Efrat Arbel, Delphine Nakache & Ian Davis: Indefinite immigration detention in Canada: legality and reforms
  • Jenny Jeanes: Rights-free zones in a country of Charter rights and freedoms
  • Merin Valiyaparampil: Questioning integrity: challenging Canada’s assessment of immigration detainees' credibility

Precarity, deportability and detention

  • Annika Lindberg: The lesser of two evils? 'Humanitarian' detention, destitution, and the plight of detainability  in Sweden
  • Sarah Marshall: Contesting conceptions of “illegality”: activist movements in Toronto’s Sanctuary City policy
  • Stephanie Silverman: Marginalization from the Community of Value: Immigrant and Indigenous Incarceration, and the Meanings of Detainability in Canada and Australia

5:00 pm - 5:30 pm Beyond detention campaign Jean-Nicolas Beuze, UNHCR representative

5:30 pm - 7:00 pm Reception for World Refugee Day Co-organized with UNHCR and AQAADI

8:30 am - 10:00 am Roundtable: Discussion on reforming detention in Canada

  • Leah Campbell, Acting Director, Detention transformation and program management division, CBSA
  • Jared Will, Jared Will & Ass.
  • Hanna Gros, International Human Rights Program, University of Toronto

10:15 am - 12:00 pm

Block D: Concurrent Workshop

Litigation as a tool for policy and social change

  • Jared Will: Litigation as a tool for exposing the realities of migrant detention and giving voice to detainees
  •  Joshua Blum: Innovative judicial remedies for immigration detention, from habeas corpus to Charter damages
  • Dorothy Estrada-Tanck: Legal basis for civil disobedience against immigration detention

Fortress Europe: from the Balkans route to mediterranean hotspots

  • Olivia Johnson: Policing bodies in transit: borders, detention and migrant narratives along the Balkan Route
  •  Nadia El-Shaarawi and Maple Razsa: Protagonists of mobility: refugees’ and activists’ strategies to resist confinement along the Balkan Route
  • Daniela DeBono: The Dark Resurgence: Immigration detention at the EU’s Mediterranean border

From Latin America to the U.S.. border: migrants' experiences

  • Maria Temores: An approach to the political subjectivity of people who resisted detention centers in the United States and cartography of «the Gray Zone»: fieldwork findings in Tijuana, Mexico
  • Derick Abrigu & Maria Silva: Los desechables: Exploring the lived realities of vulnerable migrant populations caught along the northern Mexican border
  • Cristina Yepez: Detention and deportation in Ecuador, "the country of universal citizenship"

12:00 pm - 1:30 pm Lunch: not provided

1:30 pm - 2:00 pm Plenary: Detention in Libya: IOM psychosocial intervention programs

  • Guglielmo Schinina, IOM
  • Andrea Paiato, IOM

2:00 pm - 3:45 pm

Block E: Concurrent Workshop

Externalisation of border control and non-refoulement

  • Jenny Poon: Cooperation with States using offshore detention is complicity with breach of non-refoulement
  • Sahizer Samuk: Problematic responses to problematic situations: borders, refugees and detention centres in the light of EU-Turkey Readmission Agreement
  • Brook Kebede: European policy concerning deportation of Africans and the risk of human rights violation in Africa

Issues in the institutional management of immigrant detention

  • Dominic Aitken: Preventing and responding to deaths in custody
  • Paul St-Clair: Death of a migrant during detention and CBSA response: a case study
  • Laura Rezzonico: Experiences of prison officers in a context of crimmigration: a case study from Switzerland
  • Andrew Crosby: Risk management in Belgian detention centres: constrution of institutional knowledge

Advocacy against detention in canada

Closed to governement and media

  • Salina Abji: Alternatives to detention: Abolitionist perspectives
  • Vanessa Wachuku: Role of advocacy in immigration detention policy changes in Canada
  • Michaela Beder & Katrina Hui: Collaboration between health and legal professionals in advocacy against immigration detention in Canada

4:00 pm - 5:30 pm Plenary: Next steps in advocacy on immigration detention, in Canada and internationally

Closed to government and media

Michaela Beder Syed Hussan Robyn Sampson

Closing remarks: Janet Cleveland



  • 3625 Parc Avenue
    Montréal, Canada (H2X 3P8)


  • mardi 19 juin 2018
  • mercredi 20 juin 2018
  • jeudi 21 juin 2018


  • migrant, detention, human right, mental health


  • Marie-Eve Paré
    courriel : marie-eve [dot] pare [dot] ccomtl [at] ssss [dot] gouv [dot] qc [dot] ca

URLS de référence

Source de l'information

  • Marie-Eve Paré
    courriel : marie-eve [dot] pare [dot] ccomtl [at] ssss [dot] gouv [dot] qc [dot] ca

Pour citer cette annonce

« Challenging migrant detention: Human rights, advocacy and mental health », Colloque, Calenda, Publié le mercredi 06 juin 2018,

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