The Migrant Mothers Project is a collaborative research project led by Rupaleem Bhuyan at the University of Toronto in partnership with a network of service providers, legal advocates, community health workers, and grassroots women. The primary objective of the MMP is to examine how immigration policies construct rights for people who have a precarious immigration status. Our research also explores how immigration policies contribute to different forms of violence against immigrant women in Canada.

Current Studies (2014-2017)

How Conditional Settlement Impacts Immigrant Women

Past Studies (2011-2014)

Migrant Women and Social Service Providers Responding to Changes in Immigration Policy

  • Phase I: Negotiating Citizenship and Social Rights from the Margins
  • Phase II: Community Forums
  • Phase III: Mobilizing Community-Based Knowledge On Recent Changes to Canadian Immigration Policy

Research Highlights

The Migrant Mothers Project builds on Rupaleem Bhuyan’s previous study about how violence against women shelters respond to women with different types of immigration status (2009-2010).

In the following year, from 2010 to 2011, the Migrant Mothers Project began conducting conversational interviews with 25 Spanish-speaking women from Mexico, Colombia, and Central America who were recruited through community based organizations in Toronto.

In 2012, the project partnered with Toronto Rape Crisis Centre/Multicultural Women Against Rape to host a 12-week peer-led solidarity group, for Spanish speaking women who have precarious immigration status. By 2013, after receiving support from Becoming Neighbours, the project began producing three Digital Stories with women who have precarious status. These stories featured women’s narratives of their challenges due to immigration policies and how they support themselves and their families. That same year, the project conducted a series of Community Forums across Ontario, Montreal, and Vancouver to engage with service providers, immigrant advocates, and immigrant leaders. The forums focused on how changes in immigration policies are impacting immigrants’ rights and access to safety. See our community forum summaries for highlights from these sessions.

In 2014, the Migrant Mothers Project hosted a National Symposium on June 5th held at the University of Toronto St. George Campus. The National Symposium set out to bring people from different parts of Canada together to share their analysis of how immigration policies are impacting women’s access to safety and vital services. Later that same year, we produced the final cut of the Digital Stories Collection (Till Immigration Tears Us Apart: Stories of Strength through Struggle) along with the research report entitled Unprotect, Unrecognized: Canadian Immigration Policy and Violence Against Women, 2008-2013 published in November.

In 2015, the project is currently working on a new three-year study with SHIFT: TheProject to End Domestic Violence, at the University of Calgary. This new aims to inform the development of programs, policies, and advocacy strategies to support immigrant women. You can read more about the new study and its objectives here.

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