Every day in the Greater Vancouver area – Coast Salish territories, at various skytrain stations and bus stops, Transit Police racially profile people of colour and subsequently turn migrants over to Canada Border Services Agency. Transit Police reported three hundred and twenty eight people to Canada Border Services Agency in 2013, one in five of whom faced a subsequent immigration investigation including deportation.
One of these people was Mexican migrant and hotel worker Lucia Vega Jiménez, who later committed suicide in a detention center. At the coroner’s inquest into her death, a Transit Police officer testified that he turned Lucia over to Canada Border Services Agency, in part, because Lucia had an accent and that he believed “she wasn’t originally from Canada.”
Transportation not Deportation is a community campaign calling for an immediate end to Translink and Transit police collaboration with Canada Border Services Agency. Everyone deserves access to public transportation without fear of being criminalized, abused, detained, and deported.