Understanding how immigration policies shape gender-based violence among immigrants who have a temporary or precarious status

Presented By: Dr. Rupaleem Bhuyan, Associate Professor, Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work, University of Toronto and Dr. Margarita Pintin-Perez, Senior Coordinator at the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants (OCASI).

In this webinar, Drs. Rupaleem Bhuyan and Margarita Pintín-Perez will employ an intersectionality lens to consider how immigration policies impact immigrants who are experiencing gender-based violence. They will begin with an overview of immigration patterns, with specific attention to the growth in temporary migration programs for international students and migrant workers. They will then discuss specific case studies to explore different forms of violence and community-based responses to violence for non-status, refugee, and immigrant women.

Learning Objectives:

  • To understand different types of immigration temporary or precarious immigration status.
  • To understand how immigration status impacts immigrants’ rights and challenges related to gender-based violence
  • To identify different forms of structural violence and interpersonal violence associated with precarious immigration status.
  • To explore community-based responses that centre the stories and leadership of non-status, refugee, and immigrant women to address gender-based violence in their lives

Rupaleem Bhuyan
 was born in the United States into an immigrant family of Assamese origin and immigrated to Canada in 2008. She is currently an Associate Professor in Social Work at the University of Toronto where she teaches community practice, social action, and qualitative research methods.  In 1991, Dr. Bhuyan joined the violence against women movement as a peer rape prevention educator and has since worked as a domestic violence advocate, public educator, and researcher to end gender-based violence.  Her current research examines how immigration policy contributes to gendered inequality and different forms of gender-based violence, with a focus on collective action with and by migrants who seek dignity and human rights. 

Margarita Pintin-Perez is a qualitative researcher and social worker.  Margarita holds a PhD from the Department of Society and Culture at El Colegio de la Frontera Sur and a Master of Social Work from the University of Toronto. Her research has focused on systemic and everyday forms of violence, examining how dominant discourses and representations of violence serve to frame and secure social inequality and subjection. She has completed fieldwork in Canada and Mexico, with published work on feminist research methods in social work practice and geographies of racialized, gendered violence. Margarita is currently Senior Coordinator for the Intiative to End Gender-Based Violence at the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants (OCASI). She coordinates a collaborative and national project focused on building leadership capacity to address Gender-Based Violence against non-status, refugee and immigrant (NSRI) women. The primary objectives of this project are to strengthen the leadership and advocacy capacity of NSRI women and frontline workers, community advocates and stakeholders through the formation of communities and networks to shape and inform policies and services addressing GBV across Canada.

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