Statement on Immigration and Islamophobia from the Department of Sociology, University of Toronto Mississauga

We in the Department of Sociology at the University of Toronto Mississauga are deeply troubled by the recent U.S. travel ban targeting refugees and citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries and by incidents of Islamophobia in Canada and around the world. Such incidents include but are not limited to the shooting in a Quebec mosque on Sunday, January 29. 2017. In this environment, it becomes critical to speak from our social scientific knowledge to support each other and to ensure that all among us can thrive.

As sociologists, we know that actions like these inflame animosities towards people based on their religion and nationality, particularly the most marginalized. They are likely to further destabilize a delicate international order by fuelling the hatred of those who try to divide us. They belie research findings on the suffering of those who seek asylum and on the benefits of international migration. They ignore social scientific evidence on how to sustain healthy, just, and inclusive societies. Finally, they undermine the bases of democracy.

We affirm the value and contributions of our students, faculty, and staff members who have come to Canada and UTM from all around the world and who represent many different religious traditions, identities, and backgrounds. We are committed to building a supportive intellectual community founded on the open exchange of ideas and the free exercise of social scientific research.

We know that some of us in our community are experiencing the effects of these policies and actions directly as well as indirectly. If there is any assistance you need, see the links below.  

Resources

  • General department contact: socchair.utm@utoronto.ca
  • For UTM sociology students: Joanna Mackie, Program Officer, joanna.mackie@utoronto.ca, Office DV-3268, 905-828-3937
  • Students travelling abroad with concerns should call the Safety Abroad Office directly 416-946-3929; in the case of an emergency, students can reach the University of Toronto at the 24-hour collect emergency line via Campus Police at 416-978-2222
  • UTM international students can reach staff at the International Education Centre at 905-569-4716 or international.utm@utoronto.ca

For Faculty & staff questions, please use the following contacts:

Information