Vicky Maria Victoria Venancio came to Canada under the Temporary Foreign Worker program in 2011.
Vicky dreamed of earning enough money to support herself and her elderly parents back in the Philippines, and to one day become a Canadian citizen.
That dream shattered on a June day in 2012 when Vicky was struck by a car while biking to work.
Quadriplegic and wheelchair bound, Vicky could no longer work. As a result, Vicky’s work visa soon expired, along with her provincial health care benefits. Making matters worse, Vicky’s employer McDonalds Canada failed to honour her employment contract of providing disability insurance when she was hired, leaving her with no ability to cover the considerable medical and rehabilitation costs associated with her condition.
But Vicky persevered. Left without any healthcare coverage, Vicky volunteered for experimental treatments at the University of Alberta’s ReWalk program. She has made significant progress and is helping the research group to learn new directions in making post injury re-walking possible. Vicky is determined to recover, return to work and realize her Canadian dream.
Vicky now faces her biggest challenge yet.
On Feb 16, in a public hearing, the Canadian government has decided that Vicky can no longer stay in Canada. According to the Canadian government, Vicky is of no use to Canada because she’s unable to work and must leave the country.
It doesn’t matter that Vicky isn’t able to work through no fault of her own or that she will have no ability to receive the same level and quality of care in the Philippines or that she is hoping to find a job in Canada that reflects her new reality.
The Canadian government doesn’t care. It wants Vicky out of the country.
Vicky can only stop the deportation by convincing a court to let her stay on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.
Without your support, there is no chance that Vicky will be able to stay in Canada.
It’s time for Canadians to stand with Vicky and let the Canadian government know that its treatment of Vicky is unacceptable. It offends our values and who we are as a people, and is not the Canadian way.