“Twice Removed: Double Punishment and Racial Profiling in Canada,” by Lillian Boctor, in collaboration with Solidarity Across Borders and No One is Illegal. (French version to be released shortly.) This film tells the story of Nicholas, who was deported on August 9, 2012, after living 30 years in Canada, to Guyana, a country he hadn’t seen since he was 9 years old, and where he knew no one. Under Canadian immigration law, non-citizens who are convicted of criminal offenses are punished twice: once when they’re sentenced for their crime, and a second time when they are permanently removed from Canada, even if they had lived here since childhood. They are often sent, with few resources, to places where they have little or no connections. This is known as “double punishment.” People are often subject to double punishment as a direct result of racial profiling: a recent study proves that racial profiling by police is endemic in Montreal. Neighbourhoods that have larger numbers of immigrants and people of colour are over-policed and criminalized. Nicholas’s story shares many elements with thousands of others who have been deported from Canada and the U.S. as “criminal aliens” since the 1990s.
The documentary features the voices of Nicholas and his partner; David Austin, author of “Fear of a Black Nation: Race, Sex and Security in Sixties Montreal;” Andrea Figueroa, Community Organizer at Solidarity Across Borders; Maria Forti, Member, Termite Collective; Robyn Maynard, Community Organizer at Project X and No One is Illegal; and Alexandre Popovic, spokesperson for la Coalition contre la répression et les abus policiers.