Vigils Will Be Hosted Across Canada to Honour Afghan Canadian Soleiman Faqiri on Third Anniversary of His Killing in Ontario PrisonWritten by Justice for Soli
Events in seven Canadian cities will remember man killed under government care, continue call for justice
On Sunday, December 15, hundreds of Canadians will hold vigils in seven cities across the country to honour Soleiman Faqiri on the third anniversary of his death.
Soleiman Faqiri was a 30 year old Afghan-Canadian living with mental health issues. Soleiman will be remembered for his generosity and his devotion to his family. His brilliance enabled him to learn three languages (English, Farsi and Arabic).
On 15 December 2016, Soleiman died while under Ontario government care, during an incident in which the correctional officers at Central East Correctional Centre (CECC) in Lindsay, Ontario, aka the Lindsay Superjail, were applying force to him. Soleiman was awaiting a medical evaluation and a bed at the Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health, but he never lived to receive that care.
This will be the first year that this community vigil has broadened into a national event.
Each vigil will also highlight the critical need for reform in how Canada’s correctional and judicial systems care for people suffering from mental illness.
Each vigil community represents a location that the Justice for Soli Movement has visited over the past year.
Activists from national mental health and social justice communities will join families of fragile men and women who, like Soleiman, died while temporary incarcerated in various provincial jails and federal correctional facilities. These family members include in Ottawa, Laureen St. Amour, mother of Justin St. Amour, who died on 8 December 2016 shortly after hanging himself in a segregation cell at the Ottawa-Carleton Detention Centre; in Toronto, Jessica Robinson, sister of Laura Straughan who died of she died of bacterial pneumonia at the Elgin Middlesex Detention Centre (EMDC) in London, Ontario; and in Winnipeg, Louise Gotkin, sister for Donald Moose, who died in Headingley Correctional Centre west of Winnipeg, Manitoba.
- Montreal Vigil: Bianka Savard-Lafreniere Montreal Vigil: Bianka Savard-Lafreniere
- Winnipeg Vigil: Chris Summerville Winnipeg Vigil: Chris Summerville
- Toronto Vigil: Desmond Cole Toronto Vigil: Desmond Cole
- Ottawa Vigil: Dahabo Ahmed Omer Ottawa Vigil: Dahabo Ahmed Omer
- Ottawa Vigil: Laureen St. Amour Ottawa Vigil: Laureen St. Amour
- Vancouver Vigil: Maggie Knight Vancouver Vigil: Maggie Knight
- Toronto Vigil: Paletin Faqiri Toronto Vigil: Paletin Faqiri
- Toronto Vigil: Sarah Jama Toronto Vigil: Sarah Jama
- Winnipeg Vigil: Shahina Siddiqui Winnipeg Vigil: Shahina Siddiqui
- Toronto Vigil: Yasin Dwyer Toronto Vigil: Yasin Dwyer
- Toronto Vigil: Yusuf Faqiri Toronto Vigil: Yusuf Faqiri
- Montreal Vigil: Stephen Brown Montreal Vigil: Stephen Brown
- Toronto Vigil: Haidar Ali aka Dialectic Toronto Vigil: Haidar Ali aka Dialectic
- Toronto Vigil: Faisal Bhabha Toronto Vigil: Faisal Bhabha
- Ottawa Vigil: Farhat Rehman Ottawa Vigil: Farhat Rehman
- Toronto Vigil: Fariha Khan Toronto Vigil: Fariha Khan
- Ottawa Vigil: Mustafa Farooq Ottawa Vigil: Mustafa Farooq
- Toronto Vigil: Jessica Robinson Toronto Vigil: Jessica Robinson
- Halifax Vigil: El Jones Halifax Vigil: El Jones
- Vancouver Vigil: Kashif Ahmed Vancouver Vigil: Kashif Ahmed
- Toronto Vigil: Lindsay Tait Toronto Vigil: Lindsay Tait
As reported by Shanifa Nasser for CBC, "Soleiman's family has launched a $14.3-million suit, filed at the Ontario Superior Court of Justice [in January 2019], taking specific aim at the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services, the superintendent of the Central East Correctional Centre and seven individual correctional staff members. Among the claims: a breach of Faqiri's charter rights, battery that amounted to "intentional" physical harm, negligence, abuse of public office, false imprisonment for his placement in segregation with a mental illness, a breach of duty of care and inflicting psychiatric damage."
To support Soleiman's family's legal fund, you can contribute on LaunchGood.com online here.
To learn more about Soleiman's tragic case watch the CBC Fifth Estate documentary about this death below (It may take a few moments to load the video from YouTube).