A Call to Strengthen Canada’s Protection to Central American Survivors of Gender-Based Violence


We at International Justice Mission (IJM) Canada and Citizens for Public Justice (CPJ) are committed to supporting national and international policies that strengthen protection to survivors of Gender-Based Violence (GBV). During these 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, we want to draw special attention to the initiatives that Canada can support to provide protection for Central American survivors of GBV.

Through the unique collaboration between CPJ’s expertise in Canadian policies, and IJM’s work and expertise internationally, specifically in the Northern Triangle of Central America (NTCA), we issue a call to the Federal Government on two fronts. First, we call on Global Affairs Canada to prioritize programming in the NTCA that addresses the root causes of GBV, and pervasive impunity in judicial systems. Second, we call on Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada to repeal the Safe Third Country Agreement with the US, which severely limits the ability of Central American survivors of GBV to access protection in Canada.

We developed the case for these two policy recommendations in the November 30th event “Strengthening Justice Systems: Refugee Protection for Central American Survivors of Gender-Based Violence.” The event had the participation of leaders in civil society, government and academia, who explored Canada’s role in addressing GBV in the Northern Triangle. We compiled our main arguments and policy recommendations in the brief “A Call to Strengthen Canada’s Protection to Central American Survivors of Gender-Based Violence.”

Substantive action to address GBV, and to tackle public justice issues at large, requires the collaboration of multiple actors. CPJ and IJM’s collaboration follows our shared commitment to provide comprehensive responses to issues, and to not only focus on the provision of refugee protection, but also on addressing the root causes of displacement. GBV is a significant driver of displacement worldwide, and specifically in the NTCA region. And the solutions that we propose can help Canada address it within and outside its national borders.

Join this call for action by sending this shared statement and policy brief to the Minister Sean Fraser of Immigration and Minister Harjit Sajjan of International Development using the form provided below.

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A Call to Strengthen Canada’s Protection to Central American Survivors of Gender-Based Violence

By Citizens for Public Justice & International Justice Mission

Published on December 12, 2022

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