For Immediate Release
VANCOUVER – On Sunday, February 24, 2019, the family of Soleiman Faqiri (“Justice for Soli”), No One is Illegal (“NOII”), and the BC Civil Liberties Association (“BCCLA”), will be holding a panel discussion to seek transparency and accountability for the death of Soleiman Faqiri at the hands of guards at an Ontario correctional facility.
Soleiman Faqiri, a Canadian-Muslim who struggled with mental health, died while in custody at the Central East Correctional Centre in Lindsay, Ontario on December 15, 2016. According to an internal investigation and eye witness reports, Faqiri died as a result of guards at the facility severely beating him and putting pressure on his neck while he was on the ground. Despite living with schizophrenia, Faqiri was placed in solitary confinement – a practice that has been proven to exacerbate existing mental health issues.
The investigation into Faqiri’s death has been reopened by the Office of the Chief Coroner and reassigned to the Ontario Provincial Police. His family recently launched a lawsuit against the Ontario government and the correctional officers responsible for his mistreatment and death.
Yusuf Faqiri, Soleiman’s brother, said: “Since my brother was killed, my family has been suffering. The Central East Correctional Centre should have protected Soleiman but they failed him and us. We are seeking accountability and justice for Soli. We do not want anyone else to go through what we have been through. Soleiman meant so much to us. His death will not be ignored.”
Josh Paterson, Executive Director of the BCCLA, states: “More than two years after Soleiman Faqiri’s tragic and unnecessary death at the hands of an Ontario prison, no one has been held to account. Mr. Faqiri should have received the mental health support that he so clearly needed. Instead, a witness reports that he was beaten to death by a pack of guards. We hope this new investigation will finally produce answers, and justice for Soleiman.”
What: Justice for Soleiman Faqiri- West Coast speaking tour
When: Sunday, February 24, 2019; 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Where: Mount Pleasant Neighbourhood House, 800 East Broadway, Vancouver, BC
Yusuf Faqiri, brother of Soleiman Faqiri, available for comment at (647) 620-7749 or [email protected]