Through the stories of Gail, Katerine, Emmanuel, Shane, Bobette, Sylvain, Dahiana, and Janet, you’ll learn more about realities that are far too often hidden from view.
Doctors of the world
To say that Bobette is a firecracker would be an understatement. She’d already had a long day when we met up, but she radiated a dazzling energy and positivity until the last second of our talk. In fact, whenever she wasn't telling Clumsy (her dog) to calm down, she was laughing. Yet, between the laughter, you could see that Bobette was serious.
Rather than feeling sorry for herself, Bobette turned her experiences and all the injustices she lived and witnessed into activism. Bobette dedicates time and energy to organizing demonstrations, concerts, and helping improve her community. She organized the first visits from Doctors of the World’s Mobile Clinic to her neighborhood. "I thought that as I got older, I would calm down, but actually, it's the complete opposite."
It goes without saying that she laughed after that sentence.
We had planned to meet Gail in a park near her home. When we arrived, she was squatting by a lake and sprinkling in a pinch of tobacco.
Gail is grateful, but she would have every reason not to be. She has spent 19 years trying to get out of an environment where she was overmedicated against her will. Maybe it was racism, incompetence, or just indifference. Or maybe a mix of the three. “I felt like I was a guinea pig. I couldn't say no, it was all the time…pills, needles, shock treatments.”
Stories to be discovered in the city
A good billboard should have a maximum of 7 words. But some stories deserve to be written in full.
"My wife is pregnant. With a human life. How can you tell me that if I don't give you $18,000, she won't be able to give birth?”
There are some questions that leave everyone speechless. And there were a lot of them during our conversation with Katerine and Emmanuel.
Emmanuel has been here for almost 30 years and Katerine arrived 4 years ago. But since then, she has been stuck in the cracks of system that considers her neither resident nor refugee. “Migrant person with precarious status” is the official term. There are thousands of migrants in Quebec and Doctors of the World tirelessly defends the right to health for every one of these individuals.
Tod Van Dyk
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