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#HumanityWins

www.mosaicinstitute.ca

September 11, 2015

Harnessing Canadas diversity for peace


at home and abroad.

PRESS RELEASE
The Mosaic Institute has convened Committee of Canadian experts to ensure that
Humanity triumphs over red tape
While we all appreciate the security issues and social challenges of welcoming hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees, we cannot allow
these concerns to override humanity. In an effort to de-politicize the issue, the Mosaic Institute has convened the Humanity Wins Committee,
composed of distinguished Canadian experts, to provide straightforward recommendations to expedite entry for as many Syrians as possible,
as quickly as possible. We need to protect the humanity of those fleeing horrifying conflict; we need also to demonstrate to ourselves and
others around the world that humanity will always triumph over red tape.
The Honourable Ron Atkey, PC QC, Chair of Humanity Wins, asserts that, Canada needs to take immediate action on three parallel fronts.
1. Canadian Visa Officers need to be in the field immediately, making it easier for Syrians to have access to the Visa Process.
2. The Visa process needs to be streamlined and made more effective and efficient.
3. Canada needs to work with the International Community to convene an international conference (possibly in Geneva) to work on a
ceasefire to the conflict that has tortured Syria for far too long.
We are not the only group of people actively working to open the doors and welcome a new wave of people who will enrich all our lives. To
ensure that our collective efforts expedite entry, we hope that all of us will shout out loud that there is a way. We did it in 1979 (Vietnamese)
and we did it again in the late 80s (Kosovars). Social will creates political action, and humanity wins, stated Mr. Atkey.
Hind Aboud Kabawat, a Canadian international lawyer of Syrian origin, currently on faculty at George Mason University, who has been to the
region some 24 times since 2011, states emphatically, Syrians do not want to leave Syria. It is the war forcing them to leave. A ceasefire will
end the exodus.
While security is always an issue in immigration and refugee matters, it is certainly addressable, states Norman Inkster, Committee member,
Canadas 18th RCMP Commissioner and President of Interpol.
Most of us are from immigrant stock. That is one of the important features that makes Canada such a uniquely great place to live. We
understand the immigrant experience because we are the immigrant experience states Vahan Kololian, the Mosaic Institutes Chairman.
We are witnesses to the horrors that have propelled hundreds of thousands of people from Syria to abandon their homes and seek a life
elsewhere. We, of all peoples in the world, understand their needs and desires to live a better life in peace. We should not allow rules,
regulations and red tape to stand in the way. concluded Kololian. We are grateful to the members response to form this committee.
Mosaics role has been to facilitate the formation of this body.
The Humanity Wins Committee stands ready to assist the Government of Canada in revising its policies and implementing these three
recommendations.
Something can be done. Humanity can triumph over process. Canadas beacon of hope should always shine brightly.
Contacts:
Ron Atkey, PC QC
ratkey@rogers.com
416.368.4827

Mosaic Institute
Vahan Kololian, Chair
vk@mosaicinstitute.ca; 416.644.6000 x200
Bernie M. Farber, Executive Director
bmf@mosaicinstitute.ca; 416.644.6000 x620; 416.671.3204 (c)
Attachment: Committee Members

Humanity Wins Committee

The Hon. Ron Atkey, PC QC; Committee Chair


Lawyer, law professor and former Minister of Immigration
Ms. Hind Aboud Kabawat
School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution
George Mason University

Norman Inkster, OC
18th Commissioner of the Royal Canadian
Mounted Police and President of Interpol
The Hon Louise Arbour, C.C, G.O.Q
Former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

Dr. Pamela Divinsky


Principal, The Divinsky Group

Donald H. Morrison
Founder and Chair, The Thomas Merton Centre

Izzeldin Abuelaish, OO
Associate Professor, Dalla Lana School of Public Health;
Founder, Daughters for Life Foundation

The Hon. Dr. Ed Broadbent, PC CC


Leader, NDP (retired); Founder, Broadbent Institute

Atom Egoyan, OC
Academy Award Nominated Writer and Director

Sarkis Assadourin
Three Term Federal Member of Parliament (retired)
Canadian of Syrian/Armenian Origin