Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Support Homes not Bombs in 2017 and Celebrating 2016 Victories


While many people cannot wait to see the end of 2016 – and with good reason – Homes not Bombs would like to share some highlights of the past year, and ask that you support our upcoming work in whatever way you can (details on how to support are at the bottom of this post).

Homes not Bombs is a nonviolent direct action network that engages in campaigns of education and training workshops, solidarity and accompaniment, and public action resisting interpersonal and structural violence. We work on a variety of issues, from refugee rights, prisoner support and ending the secret trial regime to stopping Canadian complicity in torture and supporting Women Who Choose to Live (women who have run afoul of the law for defending themselves against abuse).

The year began with two major victories:

A simple paperwork error kept an Ottawa couple apart from their 1-year-old baby for the 3 years. Following a year-long campaign, our working group Rural Refugee Rights Network gathered some 12,000 signatures, countless letters of support, and a visit from Santa Claus who personally appealed to Immigration Minister John McCallum to issue a temporary resident permit for Daksh Sood. In January, that holiday miracle came through, and the family is finally together. See video of Santa and McCallum at

MM is a Canadian abuse survivor fighting extradition to the USA for the "crime" of saving her kids from an abusive father. After MM's intensive two-week prison hunger strike and the cross-country campaign initiated by our working group, Women Who Choose to Live, we convinced Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould to reconsider the case ( While this was a significant victory, with bail granted so MM could spend Christmas with her kids, the Justice Minister refused her case in August, and we are again headed to the courts to review the decision. In the meantime, we ask that you sign and share this petition in support of MM:

Ongoing Campaigns

As part of our ongoing work with immigrants and refugees, we remain focused on ending the limbo in which over 700 Syrian refugees currently live in Canada. They are faced with deportation to a horrific war zone when they should instead be granted status in Canada on humanitarian grounds. One such refugee is Dima Siam, who because of a simple paperwork error is still fighting deportation to Syria. She is traumatized by this threat, as are her three Canadian children and husband. Over 22,000 people have petitioned the Trudeau government to end her nightmarish limbo (, and we conducted a three-week chain fast and letter-writing campaign in her support. Dima is planning to give birth later this month, and while her child will be a Canadian citizen, Dima remains in limbo.

The Campaign to Stop Secret Trials in Canada, which we initiated and have led since August, 2001, celebrated the victory of secret trial detainee Mahmoud Jaballah, when the 20-year-old "case" against him was dismissed by the Federal Court last summer.

Our Stop Canadian Involvement in Torture working group currently has a petition campaign on the go as three Canadian survivors of overseas torture by proxy face a possible court date in 2017 as they seek accountability and justice from a Trudeau government which voted to support them in opposition, but which is now fighting them in court, defending the torturers.

Homes not Bombs led organizing for two days of protests against the massive CANSEC weapons bazaar, including the first-ever sit-in against the $15 billion Saudi weapons deal, with three individuals arrested for unveiling a banner in the Ottawa Global Affairs lobby.

Our Anne Frank Sanctuary Committee continues to work with refugees at risk of torture and other violations if deported, seeking out church sanctuary as a means of forcing reconsideration of cases.


Homes not Bombs plans to expand its solidarity campaign working with Indigenous land and water protectors and their settler allies at Muskrat Falls in Labrador. We worked to organize a number of Ottawa rallies, including Santa's visit to the Prime Minister’s office last week:

We are also continuing a daily social media campaign pointing out that the Trudeau government has been in contempt of a Canadian Human Rights Tribunal Order, issued in January, requiring the government to end its racial discrimination against 163,000 Indigenous children.

In addition to the abovementioned campaigns and our ongoing casework with those who fall though the cracks of a withered social safety net, we will also be busy in 2017 with nonviolent direct action trainings with communities engaged in a variety of resistance campaigns.

This is work we have done on a bare bones budget for a number of decades, and hope you can support us meet our expenses with either a cheque (To Homes not Bombs, PO Box 2121, 57 Foster Street, Perth, ON K7H 1R0) or an electronic funds transfer to (if doing this, please send us an email with the security question we should answer).

Looking forward to resisting injustice with you in the year ahead.


Matthew Behrens

Homes not Bombs

PO Box 2121, 57 Foster Street, Perth, ON K7H 1R0