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Help Wilmer Gonzalez & his family stay in Canada

This petition had 12,096 supporters

I am good friends with the Gonzalez family and I am deeply concerned about their safety if they have to return to Venezuela. Please, sign this petition in an act of solidarity to keep Wilmer Gonzalez and his family from being deported back to Venezuela, putting them in a deadly situation after years of contributing to their small town in Saskatchewan.

After working in Canada for three years and being a contributing member of our society, Canadian Immigration is asking Wilmer Gonzalez, his wife Vanessa Arrieche, and his two children to leave our country immediately and return to the war-torn country of Venezuela. Wilmer currently holds an excellent job at the Kindersley hospital with the Heartland Health region.  In addition, the Government of Saskatchewan approved Mr. Gonzalez, in 2016, to stay and work in Saskatchewan under the Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program.

As of July 23rd, 2017, according to the New York Times and other media outlets, Venezuela is on the brink of a civil war as bloody as Syria's.  For more than three months, thousands of Venezuelan protesters have been fighting police and military because of its major humanitarian crisis.  Venezuela is "a country that is in a state of total collapse," with widespread hunger, shuttered government offices, and failing hospitals that resemble "hell on earth." 

As directed by his lawyer, Wilmer took all the appropriate steps to re-apply through Canadian Immigration to have his work permit extended another year beyond March 2017.  By the time Wilmer received a response to his work permit application, in July of 2017, his work permit had expired.  Canadian Immigration denied his application, saying he currently requires a valid work permit in order to apply for a renewal.  

Wilmer took all the proper steps to have his work permit extended; it's because of Canadian Immigration's lack of efficiency, his work permit expired before his renewal was processed.  Canadian Immigration says Wilmer must move his already-rooted family back to Venezuela and re-apply for a work permit outside of Canada.  Many people who have gone through similar experiences, say that Canadian Immigration uses this as a tactic so families will leave Canada, only to deny them approval to work in Canada afterward.

Why should a hard-working family who are productive members of Canadian society be forced to return to "hell on earth" when they have done nothing but take all the proper steps to stay here? 

Please sign and share - help us keep Wilmer and his family in Canada. 

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