LETTER: Help bring father and foster daughters to Canada

From reader Ruth Beck

Re: “COVID-19 leaves Nelson couple with devastating choice,” April 16

I want to update readers and let people know how they can help regarding last week’s story about Sebastien de Marre and two foster daughters, Rosena and Amaika, stranded in Haiti. This is a life and death issue for Sebastien and the girls. Sebastien is in frail health and the girls’ lives and safety would be in peril should anything happen to him.

A group of friends are working actively with Sebastien’s wife, Marie-Paule, to get them to Canada. We’re getting great support from MP Rob Morrison and his executive assistant, as well as from MP Elizabeth May. We have been in touch with immigration lawyers in Toronto, one of whom has contacts with national media. Paperwork is in progress with the Ministry of Immigration to get temporary visas for the girls.

The lawyers tell us that immigration officials are familiar with this kind of situation in Haiti; they know it can be impossible to get documents from the Haitian government. We have been writing letters to the Minister of Immigration and other government officials. We have a petition going at change.org.

We have created some momentum but we need more! If you can, please sign and share the petition at change.org/p/covid-crisis-bring-at-risk-foster-father-daughters-home-to-canada. Please share it widely on social media and by email so that people across Canada get involved.

If you have time, please send a quick e-letter to the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, Marco Mendicino, at minister@cic.gc.ca with a copy to Rob.Morrison@parl.gc.ca (and your local MP if you’re in another riding). Again, please share this idea with your networks. It will take a community and a country to save Sebastien and the girls. Thank you for your help!

Ruth Beck

Nelson

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