Federal court temporarily suspends deportation of Quebec migrant worker who was pandemic hero

By News Staff

Mamadou Konaté – a man who worked in Quebec’s long-term care homes during the pandemic – can stay in Quebec for at least another eight months to a year, thanks to a federal court decision.

He’s from the Ivory Coast and has lived in Quebec for six years and on Oct. 5, he was scheduled to be deported. But on Friday, a federal judge ordered a stay on the order to deport Konaté, which was pleaded for Thursday in an urgent court hearing.

The stay will run until a decision on the merits is made on the judicial review of the CBSA’s decision to refuse to defer Konaté’s removal, which could take between about eight and 12 months.

This is the third time that the Federal Court has ordered a stay of his removal from the country.

BACKGROUND: Quebec migrant worker goes from pandemic hero to risk of deportation

“We believe that it is therefore high time that IRCC and the CBSA seize the opportunity to finally regularize the status of Mamadou in Canada,” said Amelia Orellana of the Support Committee for Mamadou in a statement.

He has a new application for a temporary residence permit in process that would allow him to obtain a status in the country. 

More than 41,000 people have signed a petition supporting Konaté’s efforts to remain in Quebec.

“A guardian angel during the pandemic, he gave everything, at the front, during COVID-19, to help save lives,” said Orellana in the statement. “He only asks to continue his Canadian life in safety with his family.”

“He fled Côte d’Ivoire and he came here to submit a refugee claim. He was deemed inadmissible, because he had been associated with a group that fights against the government in Côte d’Ivoire. He is associated with them against his choice. He was forced to be associated with them,” said Marisa Berry Mendez, campaign manager, Amnesty International Canada Francophone, at a vigil they held for Konaté on Sept. 22.

They believe Konaté’s life would be at risk if he were to return to Ivory Coast.

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