Immigration & Diversity news headlines – April 24, 2014


‘Technical glitch’ means long-haul trucker can’t take a job that’s waiting for him, and must return to India (Larissa Cahute,

Long-haul trucker Bhupinder Singh Brar is in high demand for Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker Program — yet the Canada Border Services Agency is deporting him. The 28-year-old from Punjab has nearly three years of experience driving across Canada and the U.S. He travels so much for work he has homes in both Brampton, Ont., and Surrey.

Preparing for the launch of "Express Entry" (

Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander today announced new measures in key economic immigration programs to prepare for next year’s launch of Express Entry, Canada’s new active recruitment model. Express Entry will lead to a faster and more flexible economic immigration system that will address Canada’s economic and labour market needs.

Quebec immigration to reopen immigrant investor program (

Quebec has announced that it will reopen its Immigrant Investor Program (QIIP) later this year despite the decision of the Canadian federal government to close its investor program. Quebec’s immigration ministry, Immigration et Communautés Culturelles Quebec (ICCQ) has announced that the program will reopen on September 8th 2014.

Why is green so white? (Alden E. Habacon,

Recently, there has been rising concern that Vancouver is the most Asian city in North America. To be honest, this is old news. Most Vancouverites over the age of 25 should already know this as “history”. Over a decade ago, Vancouver architect Bing Thom said to a packed room at the Vancouver Museum that “Vancouver is no longer the gateway to Asia. It is part of Asia.” The Lower Mainland has been connected to the Asia Pacific for a very long time.

Labour market outcomes of the children of immigrants in Ontario (

Using the 2006 Census, this study examines the labour market outcomes of children of immigrants aged 25 to 34 who are living in Ontario. We find that most groups achieve higher levels of university completion rates than the third generation. Second-generation males, including those from Jamaica, Latin America, East Asia, the Philippines, India, South/Southeast Asia, West Asia and Arab/North African region, the United States, and Eastern Europe have lower earnings than the third generation. Dutch and Portuguese with lower educational attainments are not necessarily disadvantaged in terms of earnings and employment. In terms of income, most second-generation women are not significantly different from their third-generation counterparts.

Giving Birth in a New Land – A guide for women new to Canada and their families (

Four handouts containing information for newcomer women who are pregnant and expect to deliver their baby in Ontario. Includes information on local practices related to the prenatal and postnatal period, as well as services and resources available.

First Timer (

Matt Galloway spoke with Anthony Fernando, he is running for Toronto City Council in Ward 9, Downsview.

Somali School Strike (

Matt Galloway spoke with Ahmed Hussen. He is the president of the Canadian Somali Congress.

Sikhs buy back their history one bid at a time, but say museum space is a hard sell (Dakshana Bascaramurty,

When the curved, 19th-century sword from India was put up for sale by Mullock’s, a British auction house, a buzz spread through Canada’s small community of Sikh history buffs. The sword, believed to have come from the court of Maharajah Ranjit Singh, the founder of the Sikh Empire in India, sparked international interest as well – but it was Calgary billionaire Bob Dhillon who had the winning bid. “I just didn’t want it to go into the hands of another collector. I didn’t want it to go from another safety deposit box to another safety deposit box,” said Mr. Dhillon, a practising Sikh who made his fortune in real estate as CEO of MainStreet Equity Corp.

CERIS Call for Presentations (

CERIS invites applications from recent and prospective PhDs to present their dissertation findings about migration and settlement at a workshop to be held on June 11, 2014 at York University, Toronto. During the workshop, participants will also receive hands-on training on how to write plain language research summaries. Following the workshop, CERIS will publish two-page summaries of the presented dissertations in its Research Summaries series.

Precarious Housing among Migrant Communities: A Multi-Sectoral Discussion (

This panel will discuss the causes of precarious housing, including homelessness and hidden homelessness, among migrant communities and the housing supports they receive from community and municipal agencies. Insights from the local research, service, and policy initiatives in the Toronto region will be complemented with a case study of homelessness among newcomer youth in Finland.

Should public advertising include at least one official language? (

That’s the question being asked once again after a toothpaste ad on bus shelters around the Lower Mainland has reopened a controversial debate. The ads are for Crest toothpaste and they are in Chinese only.

Should Chinese-only Crest toothpaste ad concern Richmond residents? (

A Richmond woman has renewed her call for a ban on Chinese-only signage after ads for Crest toothpaste appeared in several city bus shelters. Kelly Starchuk says advertising only in a language other than English or French acts to isolate people rather than bring them together, which she believes is a threat to multiculturalism.

Chinese-only sign reignites language debate in Richmond, B.C. (

A Chinese-language advertisement at a bus shelter in Richmond, B.C. has reignited a debate over the language used on signs in the Vancouver suburb. The ad, which can be seen from Steveston Highway, targets its message at the Chinese community in Richmond, where almost half the population speaks Cantonese.

“Shopping for Votes” Immigration and Citizenship (

Target voting groups among ethnic communities: Philipino, Chinese and Indo-Canadians, with my comparison table of the figures highlighted in the press releases.

Immigration Lawyers and their Vital Role in the Global Economy (Bernard P Wolfsdorf,

Eighteen per cent of Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants; more than 40 per cent are founded by immigrants or the children of immigrants. The newest Fortune 500 companies are even more likely to have been founded by an immigrant. Fortune 500 companies generate revenues equivalent to 73 per cent of American GDP, and “form the global economy’s center of gravity”, according to a 2011 report by the Partnership for a New American Economy. The report goes on to warn, “In the global economy, America’s economic dominance is far from assured.” While China and India are increasingly welcoming environments for business, and other countries like the UK, Canada and Australia are taking bold measures to welcome immigrant investors and entrepreneurs, “the American immigration system continues to raise barriers to these individuals, driving away the bright foreign students who attend our universities and keeping out the aspiring businesspeople who would otherwise come here.”

MayworksHalifax festival a multifaceted celebration of activism, diversity (

The fifth annual MayworksHalifax Festival, opening Wednesday and running to May 2, challenges stereotypes about unions and celebrates diversity among artists and workers. This year, it marks the passing of civil rights activist Rocky Jones with an evening of predominantly African-Nova Scotian films, recognizes First Nations struggles for environmental and social justice in its opening ceremony and explores telephone sex workers in a new play written by Lee-Anne Poole.

Muslim Gives Shoes to Barefoot Bus Rider (

A Canadian bus driver could not believe his eyes when he was a generous Muslim man taking off his shoes to give them to a barefoot bus rider, choosing to walk home barefooted. “It made my heart melt,” Surjit Singh Virk, a Coast Mountain Bus Co. driver, told QMI Agency, Toronto Star reported. “He just took his shoes and socks off and said, ‘You can take these, don’t worry about me — I live close by and can walk.’

Documents detail federal push to get war crimes website online (Douglas Quan,

Border services staff were under pressure to develop a website featuring suspected foreign war criminals hiding in Canada, even as the legal and privacy implications of publishing the “wanted” list were being assessed, newly released records show. Five days before the launch, a senior bureaucrat with the Canada Border Services Agency told colleagues in an email that “we have been given almost no time to do this.”

Jason Kenney says Manitoba government should apologize for immigration event (

Federal Employment Minister Jason Kenney says the Manitoba government should apologize for a controversial immigration event two years ago. Kenney says the province’s NDP government used immigrants as "political props" and engaged in fear-mongering over federal changes to immigration programs.

Ryerson launches new certificate program to support entrepreneurs in a multicultural marketplace (
Ryerson University’s G. Raymond Chang School of Continuing Education announces the introduction of a new Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Multiculturalism. The only one of its kind in Canada, the certificate focuses on skills needed to engage and be successful in today’s multicultural market. The innovation entrepreneurs bring to the development of new products and services generates new wealth and creates jobs. 63 per cent of the population in Toronto will belong to a visible minority group by 2031, according to Statistics Canada, so a focus on understanding the impact of cultural diversity in small business is critical to creating a thriving ecosystem.

Temporary foreign workers typify a heartless policy that isn’t even smart (Karl Nerenberg,
Deepan’s case is part of what the Harper government would call its hard-headed, practical and economically-focused immigration and refugee policy. It is a policy that has produced a drastic reduction in family class reunification and refugee admittances, and a vast increase in temporary foreign workers.

Pregnancy complications may be more common in immigrants from certain regions (
Pregnant immigrants from Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and Caribbean islands may require increased monitoring during pregnancy, according to new research from St. Michael’s Hospital.

Avril Lavigne slammed for ‘offensively racist’ Hello Kitty music video (
The critics are pouncing on Avril Lavigne. The Canadian singer’s latest music video, for single Hello Kitty, has been met with almost universal scorn, with the four-minute long clip decried by critics as everything from lazy and embarrassing to “the worst thing you’ll watch all week.”

‘Racist’ Brampton Flyer Targets Sikh Community (TWEETS) (
A "racist" flyer is being pilloried on social media over raising fears about the Sikh community in Brampton, Ont. The flyer, titled "The Changing Face of Brampton," shows two pictures: one of a group comprised mostly of white people, the other of Sikhs.

Photographer captures Toronto, one country at a time (
If you happen to be from Liechtenstein, the Solomon Islands or Tuvalu, Colin Boyd Shafer would like to meet you. The local photographer wants to take a picture of Torontonians who come from the 190 countries around the world and posting them on, a project he says showcases the city’s diversity.

Komagata Maru exhibit recalls ship that was turned away (
This year, the 100th anniversary of the episode, Mr. Girn is helping to tell the story, which has become a passion for him. He is overseeing the project Komagata Maru 1914-2014, a collaboration among eight institutions across the Lower Mainland to hold exhibitions and events. At the Surrey Art Gallery, Ruptures in Arrival: Art in the Wake of the Komagata Maru examines contemporary art dealing with the event – and more recent histories of mass migration from Asia to Canada’s West Coast.

Royal Bank making it easier for newcomers to settle in Canada (
RBC Royal Bank today announced it has made a number of enhancements to make it easier for newcomers to manage their finances and settle in Canada. The changes being made recognize the unique needs of newcomers and better enable access to credit products, including options that require no Canadian credit history. "Each year, we welcome approximately 650,000 immigrants to Canada and one of the common challenges newcomers face is establishing credit in their new home country," said Christine Shisler, director, Multicultural Markets, RBC. "We want to be the bank that helps people with their important firsts – their first bank account, their first credit card, their first car purchase and their first home. These are significant milestones and we want to make the transition to Canada as seamless as possible by recognizing their needs and values."

Gateway Centre For New Canadians (

The Gateway Centre for New Canadians is a full access community centre designed to offer settlement and support services for immigrants, people in transition and newcomers to Peel region. Through a wide range of programs including language learning services, skills training and family mentoring, this civic-minded centre has a client base representing 21 different nationalities. “Through a collaboration with 30 community groups, associations, service providers and businesses, we have a people flow of over


Federal Government sabotaging efforts to provide care for refugees under Ontario Temporary Health Program (
Unnecessary federal government red tape is preventing refugees from receiving health services in Ontario, even though the provincial government has assumed responsibility for care Canadian Doctors for Refugee Care (CDRC) said today. Physicians across the province are reporting long and gratuitous delays to determine eligibility and to receive reimbursement for health services that the Ontario Government has committed to covering, and the federal government used to pay for. This latest phase of federal stubbornness is part of an ongoing Conservative Government project to create barriers to care for refugees and general confusion for health workers.

Critics urge rethink of Hungary’s safe-country label – registration required (

April 23 – May 7, 2014: What are the implications of human rights for our understandings of refugee law? (

Co-sponsored by the Refugee Law Initiative as a follow up to their conference ‘On the Borders of Refugee Protection: The Impact of Human Rights Law on Refugee Law – Comparative Practice and Theory held at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, London on 13th and 14th November 2013


Hiring temporary foreign workers (
Foreign workers are hired in a variety of industries in Canada including lower wage service jobs such as Tim Hortons and McDonald’s. The Conservative government has outlined steps to tighten the rules surrounding foreign hires in an attempt to protect the jobs of Canadian workers. So what are the steps involved in hiring a temporary foreign worker? Click through our interactive to find out.

Kenney: Only ‘small numbers’ of TFW abusers (

Jason Kenney says only "small numbers" of companies are abusing Ottawa’s controversial temporary foreign workers program as a major fast-food chain freezes its participation and a respected economist casts fresh doubt on the extent of Canada’s skills shortage.

Work In Progress: quality of jobs, not workers, at core of flawed foreign worker program (Jessica Barrett,

At this point, you’d have to actively try not to find controversy surrounding Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker program. From its inception, the system invented to bring workers from outside the country to fill jobs that Canadians can’t or won’t do has been fraught with allegations of impropriety — everything from abuses against foreign workers, to wage discrimination, to bumping Canadians from their jobs.

Jason Kenney says Manitoba government should apologize for immigration event (The Canadian Press,

Federal Employment Minister Jason Kenney says the Manitoba government should apologize for a controversial immigration event two years ago. Kenney says the province’s NDP government used immigrants as "political props" and engaged in fear-mongering over federal changes to immigration programs.

Towards the US Model? (

In the wake of publicized changes to the Temporary Foreign Worker program, it has been speculated that Labour Market Opinion (LMO) exempt categories would be placed under scrutiny and reformed. At present, there has been speculation that the "intra-company transfer" category would be one of the first to be reformed. Generally, the intra-company transfer program allows companies to move current employees, in either specialized knowledge or managerial roles, into similar roles in Canada. As of this post, there are no confirmed changes to the category. However, Canada often follows the United States in immigration trends. Therefore, a review of each country’s intra-company transfer program may indicate the direction that Canada will take with reforming this program.

Foreign worker program abusers could face fraud charges, says minister (

Federal Employment Minister Jason Kenney says employers who abuse the temporary foreign workers program could face fraud charges and possible jail time. Kenney says he believes the number of abuses under the program is small and the government has already been working to tighten the rules.

Abuse of Temporary Foreign Workers Program could lead to charges: Van Kesteren (Don Robinet,

While there have been a few high-profile cases of abuse of the Temporary Foreign Workers Program (TFWP), Chatham-Kent-Essex MP Dave Van Kesteren says the program is necessary for some businesses to operate. Van Kesteren said more stringent requirements have been instituted for the TFWP and that it would be foolish for employers to abuse the system, as penalties include fines, blacklisting and possible jail time.

McILVEEN: Foreign worker program lowering wages, exploiting migrant workers (

Another week, another bizarre story about Canada’s temporary foreign worker program. This time, it’s a tale out of Weyburn, Sask., about workers who have reportedly been sacked by their pizza shop employers in favour of staff from abroad. One woman had worked at the shop for 28 years, another for 14.

McDonald’s Canada suspends use of temporary foreign workers (

McDonald’s Canada is putting its temporary foreign workers program on hold while a third party conducts an audit on its use of the plan. Stung by recent criticism of its use of foreign workers, the restaurant chain’s vice-president of human resources Len Jillard said Wednesday the firm needs to pause the plan to prove to Canadians it is not abusing the program or its workers.

McDonald’s foreign worker practices halted in face of investigation (

McDonald’s Canada is putting its temporary foreign worker program on hold while a third party conducts an audit on its use of the plan. Stung by recent criticism of its use of foreign workers, the restaurant chain’s vice-president of human resources Len Jillard says the firm needs to pause the program to prove to Canadians it’s not abusing the program or its workers.!/content/1.2619431

Assessing alternatives to scandal-plagued temporary foreign workers program (Lee-anne Goodman,

How to solve a problem like the federal government’s scandal-plagued temporary foreign workers program? Economists and immigration experts say there are solutions at hand as the Conservatives grapple with yet another controversy involving temporary foreign workers.

Temporary foreign worker policy lets low-wage firms have their cake and eat it too (David Green,

What this policy does is allow firms to operate low wage and benefit workplaces without worrying about turnover costs. Because the TFWs will be forced to leave Canada if they quit the firm that brought them in, firms can be sure they will not face turnover problems. This is revealed in comments from fast food firm owners in the last few weeks. They argue that Canadian workers don’t work hard enough and are unreliable (that is, are prone to leaving). The TFWs, on the other hand, are touted as committed and hard-working workers. But this is exactly what one would expect if a firm operates by offering bad jobs: the workers who can quit (the Canadians) do so while those who cannot appear all the better in comparison.

Is there really a shortage of Canadians willing to work? (

With 6 unemployed Canadians for every job vacancy, why are employers hiring an ever increasing number of temporary foreign workers? Is there really a shortage of Canadians willing to do the work temporary foreign workers do?

Profiting from the precarious: new report details recruitment abuse of migrant workers (Fay Faraday,

As scandals about abuse of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program break with increasing regularity, the spotlight still overlooks the exploitation that workers face just to get jobs under that program. A new report from the Metcalf Foundation reveals that migrant workers regularly pay thousands of dollars in recruiting fees — equal to as much as two to three years’ wages in their home currency — to work in minimum wage jobs in Ontario.

Public servants warned Jason Kenney of "obvious data gaps" in jobs stats: internal docs (

Employment Minister Jason Kenney was told of "obvious data gaps" about the jobs market by his department even as he refuses to implement "numerous recommendations" of an expert panel to collect better labour market information, internal records show. The memo and supporting documents to Employment Minister Jason Kenney, prepared last fall in preparation for a meeting with Don Drummond, a former associate deputy minister at the Department of Finance and former chief economist for TD Bank, followed a critical presentation by Drummond at a social policy conference in September 2013.

Questions about foreign worker policy (Murray Mandryk,

It’s good to see that, even among free-enterprisers in this country, logic is prevailing when it comes to abuses of the federal government’s temporary foreign worker program. Or at least, logic seems to prevail among most free-enterprisers who aren’t completely blinded by their own vested interests – like the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB), which seemed to suggest this week serious flaws in the temporary foreign worker program should continue to be ignored.

Scrap foreign workers program, say critics (Lee-Anne Goodman,

How to solve a problem like the federal government’s scandal-plagued temporary foreign workers program? Economists and immigration experts say there are solutions at hand as the Conservatives grapple with yet another controversy involving temporary foreign workers.

Weyburn restaurant defends staffing moves and use of foreign temps (

The owners of Brothers Classic Grill and Pizza, a Weyburn, Sask., restaurant at the centre of controversy over its use of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, say recent staffing changes were related to the "restructuring" of their hours of operation. In a statement released Wednesday, the owners — who describe themselves as a family-owned business — said they informed their staff of the changes earlier this year and some employees accepted the changes to their schedules while others did not.

Restaurant in Weyburn responds to temporary foreign worker controversy (Whitney Stinson,
The Weyburn restaurant at the centre of temporary foreign worker controversy this week responded to the media on Wednesday in a statement. In it they explain this past winter Brothers Classic Grill and Pizza was forced to restructure its business, and change the hours of operation.

Work In Progress: quality of jobs, not workers, at core of flawed foreign worker program (Jessica Barrett,
At this point, you’d have to actively try not to find controversy surrounding Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker program. From its inception, the system invented to bring workers from outside the country to fill jobs that Canadians can’t or won’t do has been fraught with allegations of impropriety — everything from abuses against foreign workers, to wage discrimination, to bumping Canadians from their jobs.

Tim Hortons, McDonald’s face criticism over foreign worker program (Dirk Meissner, Tara Carman,

Tim Hortons has ended its relationship with a franchisee in Fernie and Blairmore, Alta. who was the target of an Employment Standards Branch investigation after a temporary foreign worker from the Philippines claimed he was denied overtime pay for years.

What can BC and employers do to retain immigrant talent? (IECBC)
One of a three part series of short documentary-style videos that profile the stories of three BC skilled immigrants and the employment barriers they face.

2014 Global Talent Conference: the video (

Enjoy with us some nice moments of 2014 Global Talent Conference!

Immigration & Diversity news headlines – April 23, 2014


Duly Quoted: Jonny Dovercourt, on Diversity in Toronto’s Music Scene (Sarah Sweet,

Promoters are teaming up to bridge divides among Toronto’s music communities. “With our legendary cultural diversity, Toronto seems primed to be a musical melting pot, but instead we all seem to be stirring different cauldrons.”

Carding (

Toronto police are looking at revising their policy around carding, but do those revisions go far enough? Matt Galloway spoke with criminal defence lawyer Howard Morton.

Event May 13: Embedding Equity into Quality Health Care (Mount Sinai Hospital and Toronto Central LHIN)

This event will focus on sharing leading ideas, practices and strategies on how to embed equity into every aspect of quality health care.

Comic blogger draws on immigrant experience in Toronto (Rhiannon Russell,

As Takiyoshi, who’s in her early 30s, settled in Toronto, she wanted to document her experiences. Her Canadian husband, Kevin James, gave her cartooning pens and paper for Christmas one year, and she decided to revisit an old pastime — drawing. Last December, Takiyoshi created a blog called The Days of Hanako, which provides readers with anecdotes about her immigration experience in comic-strip form.

Welcoming record numbers from China in 2013 (

Today, Chris Alexander, Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister and Costas Menegakis, Parliamentary Secretary to Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister, highlighted the record number of Chinese students and permanent residents welcomed to Canada in 2013. They announced that last year, Canada issued more than 270,000 visitor visas to Chinese citizens, welcomed more than 29,000 Chinese students and admitted more than 34,000 Chinese citizens as permanent residents of Canada.

Mary’s story (

Mary emigrated from a very small city in the interior of China in 2007 when she had the opportunity to continue her education in Canada. She went to a university in China where she got a Bachelor’s degree in engineering. When she was accepted to the University of Windsor for engineering, she accepted it and took the steps necessary to migrate. In China, Mary worked as a project engineer but her goals and ambitions led her to seek new education opportunities abroad. Initially, she had though that she would end up in Alberta working in the petroleum industry, but things have not worked out in favour of that path yet. So because Mary was completing her Master’s at the University of Windsor, she lived there for several years with her husband, a post-doctoral researcher. They moved to several locations based on the prevalence of work. On average, every year Mary moves to a new city. First she lived in Windsor, then Thunder Bay, then Worcester, MA, and most recently Peterborough. She described the experience as hard but wholly dependent on finding a job, either for herself or her husband. Mary has a one-year old son whom she is raising in Peterborough. He has become one of the most important motivators for finding a steady job and starting a home.


Congolese refugees ‘interviewed’ in Canada by officials they fled from (Nicholas Keung,
Outraged community claims Canada paid agents from a country known for human rights violations to help facilitate deportations.

Ex-refugee uses own experiences to help others (Magdalena Osumi,

As a former refugee who was forced to leave his own country during the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq War, Iranian-born Sena Vafa hopes to raise awareness about the plight of refugees here in Japan. Now a Canadian citizen who first came to Japan in the late 1990s and who has lived here since 2006, Vafa has been sharing his experiences through lectures at various venues across the country while at the same time working for charities and humanitarian causes.


Read the latest ALLIES newsletter (
Immigrant employment news and resources from across Canada including a new on webinar paid internships, celebrating Canada’s best diversity employers, recognizing innovation in foreign credential recognition and new policy papers on the underutilization of immigrant skills and employer perspectives on immigration reform and the expression of interest system.

Brothers Classic Grill and Pizza investigated after servers say they lost their jobs to temporary foreign workers (

The federal government said Monday it is investigating a Saskatchewan restaurant where two long-serving waitresses say they and two others recently lost their jobs to temporary foreign workers. Employment Minister Jason Kenney has asked his department to investigate the Brothers Classic Grill and Pizza in Weyburn, Sask., a spokeswoman for the minister said Monday.

Don Cayo: Our national economy needs foreign workers (

Two key elements of Canada’s immigration policy don’t add up. First, there is the seemingly sensible thrust to attract skilled immigrants as potential citizens, but then to tolerate barriers — mainly from protectionist professional associations — that prevent many thousands from using those supposedly valued and in-demand skills. The hoops are so onerous and the opportunities so limited that most foreign-trained doctors, engineers, etc. simply can’t practise their professions here. As a result of this and other failures to integrate newcomers, Canada gets 250,000 or so new future citizens every year who are stuck with worse-than-average chances of landing a job or lower-than-average earnings if they do.

Canada needs global talent (Yuen Pau Woo,

How well is British Columbia doing in attracting global talent? This was one of the questions put to a panel at the recent B.C. Immigrant Employment Council’s 2014 summit. The summit was timely and relevant, given recent reforms in Canada’s immigration program, persistent challenges in the under-utilization of immigrants, and a looming deficit of skilled workers in the face of massive resource development projects that are in the offing. My answer was we are doing pretty well, but not generally for reasons that have to do with talent. B.C. has attracted many highly skilled immigrants because of geography and lifestyle, not because of the opportunity to apply global talent in a Canadian context. This is simply a restatement of the well-known skills mismatch that many immigrants face.

Replace Temporary Foreign Worker Program with immigration, say experts (

How to solve a problem like the federal government’s scandal-plagued Temporary Foreign Worker Program? Economists and immigration experts say there are solutions at hand as the Conservatives grapple with yet another controversy involving temporary foreign workers. "We have to figure out what we want as a labour market in the end," David Green, an economics professor at the University of British Columbia who specializes in wage and employment issues, said in an interview Tuesday.

Sask. Federation of Labour says temporary foreign worker program abused (Andrew Shepherd,

Larry Hubich, President of the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour calls the temporary foreign workers program an embarrassing black eye in Canada. He says he has no doubt the program is being abused and he wants it scrapped in favour of a program that encourages proactive immigration. His comments come after recently fired Canadian workers claim temporary foreign workers took their jobs at Brothers Classic Grill in Weyburn.

Pinoy caregivers struggle to advance in careers in Canada (Veronica Silva,

Filipino migrant groups in Ontario are working with two Toronto-based universities to study how Pinoy live-in caregivers are transitioning after completing the Live-In Caregiver Program (LCP). The LCP is a federal government program that allows Temporary Foreign Workers to seek permanent residency, and eventually citizenship.

Service sector sees spike in temporary foreign workers (Bill Curry,

The number of temporary foreign workers in Canada’s hotel and restaurant sector has exploded under the Conservative government as the latest figures show the industry is the biggest user of the controversial federal program.

Support pours in for Weyburn, Sask., waitresses who lost jobs (

A couple of waitresses in Weyburn, Sask., may have lost their jobs, but they are finding a lot of support in their own city and across the country. CBC’s iTeam uncovered that a local restaurant fired Sandy Nelson and Shaunna Jennison-Yung and replaced them with temporary foreign workers.

No foreign worker issues here: chamber (

The issues faced by several restaurants in British Columbia are not cropping up here, according to Cold Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce executive director Sherry Bohme. (There’s been) nothing that we’re aware of,” said Bohme, referring to the situation where Canadian employees at several McDonald’s restaurants complained that foreign workers got more shifts and higher pay than they did.

Replace Canada’s temporary foreign workers program with immigration and incentives, say critics (Kenzo Tribouillard,

How to solve a problem like the federal government’s scandal-plagued temporary foreign workers program? Economists and immigration experts say there are solutions at hand as the Conservatives grapple with yet another controversy involving temporary foreign workers.

Foreign worker programs explained (Emma Graney,

Questions are being raised about the temporary foreign worker program, following allegations that locals lost their jobs to foreign workers at a Weyburn pizza joint. The federal government is investigating the claims of two long-serving waitresses, who say they and two others recently lost their jobs while temporary foreign workers remain employed. It’s not the first time the program has been drawn into the spotlight, and government recently told media it would “not tolerate any abuse” of the program.

Daily Reads/Micro Thoughts Summary

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Immigration & Diversity news headlines – April 22, 2014


Read CARL’s Brief on Proposed Citizenship Changes in Bill C-24 (

CARL has prepared a brief for the upcoming study of the House of Commons Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immgration on Bill C-24, An Act to amend the Citizenship Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts (short title: The Fair Elections Act). Read the brief here and stay tuned for further consitutional analysis.

Canada to issue stamp on Komagata Maru on May 6 (

Interestingly, Canada Post has finally decided to issue the official stamp to commemorate the Komagata Maru tragedy of 1914 that involved forced return of 376 passengers from the Vancouver Harbour to India. This $2.50 stamp will be formally released in Ottawa by federal Employment and Multicultural Minister Jason Kenney and Canada Post President and CEO Deepak Chopra on May 6.

CERIS Call for Presentations: Workshop on Recent Doctoral Research Regarding Migration and Settlement (

CERIS invites applications from recent and prospective PhDs to present their dissertation findings about migration and settlement at a workshop to be held on June 11, 2014 at York University, Toronto. During the workshop, participants will also receive hands-on training on how to write plain language research summaries. Following the workshop, CERIS will publish two-page summaries of the presented dissertations in its Research Summaries series at:

Man fined $70,000 for immigration act violations (

A Jordanian national who previously lived in Halifax has been fined $70,000 for violating Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. Sardar Hussein Hasan, 46, provided false information to Citizenship and Immigration Canada in an application for a permanent resident card in March 2013 and in a residency questionnaire in July 2013.

The Tongues Issue (Ethnicaisle,

Tongues are funny things. Most of what makes up the tongue is invisible—and much of what we use tongues for is similarly ineffable: to taste; to speak; to kiss; and.. other things we’ll tell you about when you’re older. But somewhere in that fuzzy mix of taste, language, and sensuality is culture itself. At the tip of the tongue is where both the impossibility of translation and the ecstasy of mutuality are found. So here in the Ethnic Aisle’s “Tongue Issue”, we’re all about that most sensitive of organs, and how it stands for how we communicate and connect. Follow along why dontcha’?


Canada should do the right thing for the Pusuma family (Stephen Scharper,
Roma family represented by a lawyer who failed to provide adequate refugee representation deserves to have their case reconsidered. So writes a young girl to Lulu Pusuma, the 6-year-old daughter of Jozsef and Timea, a Roma family attacked in Hungary for their human rights advocacy. They now live in a 20- by 20-foot room in a Toronto church, unable to step outside for fear of deportation. They have been in sanctuary for the last 29 months.


Foreign worker program fills a need, protects other jobs, business leader says (
Dan Kelly, president and CEO of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, responded Monday to complaints against the federal temporary foreign worker program, saying foreigners are integral to helping small businesses survive and address labour shortages. Kelly, speaking in Vancouver, said “recent stories have unfairly cast all businesses that use the TFWP in a very negative light” when they are meant to address labour shortages across Canada. This is excerpted from an interview with The Vancouver Sun.

Pizza place faces federal grilling over temporary foreign workers (Bill Curry,

The owners of a pizza restaurant in Weyburn, Sask., are facing a deluge of online scorn and a federal investigation after two veteran employees said they lost their jobs to temporary foreign workers. Sandy Nelson and Shauna Jennison-Yung worked 28 and 14 years, respectively, at Brothers Classic Grill and Pizza before learning last month that all staff were being laid off as part of a restructuring. When the dust settled, the temporary foreign workers at the restaurant were retained while the two women said they were not.

Media Release: Actyl Group Clarifies Inaccuracies in Recent CBC News Report on Temporary Foreign Workers (

Actyl Group, an international workforce solutions firm, would like to clarify some facts related to the services it provides its clients after a recent CBC News report that contained several inaccuracies. The report, published April 17 as part of the CBC News "Go Public" series, detailed claims made by some temporary foreign workers who alleged mistreatment on the part of an Edmonton employer. In addition to reporting these workers’ claims, the article and accompanying video made several statements that misrepresented Actyl’s work in finding and recruiting skilled workers for its clients, which include various Canadian businesses and organizations.

New Website For Internationally Trained Professionals (

Humber College has launched an updated website specifically for internationally trained professionals. Within the site, immigrants can find information on Humber’s programs and services including: free advising service for those seeking advice on educational options and other employment services and resources.

AWA human rights activist Raul Gatica awarded Diamond Jubilee Medal (

Raul Gatica, a long-time a human rights activist, staff member and past coordinator of the Agriculture Workers Alliance (AWA) centre in Surrey, British Columbia, has been awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for his outstanding commitment and contribution to the rights of migrant agricultural workers in Canada.

Firm in tiny Sask. town flourishing with Filipino workers (

A farm equipment manufacturer in the tiny town of Frontier, Sask., says hiring immigrants from the Philippines has been a key to its success. In recent years, Honey Bee Manufacturing has filled 35 jobs at it Frontier combine header plant from the Philippines — just under 20 per cent of its workforce.

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Immigration & Diversity news headlines – April 21, 2014


Parenting skills put to the test in multicultural society (Leah McLaren,
Parenting in a multicultural environment tests our moral relativism. It reveals the wildly different ways most of us struggle to make sure our children end up as good people. The question is, good according to whose rules? Despite the rise of Tiger Mother-type parenting books, which presume the goal of most parents is to ensure our kids get ahead, most parents I know are far more concerned with ensuring their kids are simply decent.

Canada to allow Sikh kirpans in its embassies and missions abroad (Jeff Lacroix-wilson,
Eight years after the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that kirpans – the ceremonial daggers worn by those of the Sikh faith – could be safely brought into schools under certain conditions, they will now be allowed into all Canadian embassies and missions abroad.

Filipino Canadian paper celebrates 25th anniversary (Nicholas Keung,
For the past 25 years, Hermie and Mila Garcia have followed the same routine every other week: up till the wee hours proof-reading and fact-checking on Thursday and then rising early Friday to check on the bundles coming off the press at a Yorkdale Mall area print shop, the ink still fresh on the pages of their family newspaper. As their Philippine Reporter reaches its quarter-century milestone this spring, the couple has seen it grow from a 12-page, 2,000-copy black-and-white publication to a 56-page, 12,000-copy full-colour biweekly.

After 40 years, Immigrant Settlement Program needs an overhaul (Robert Vineberg,
Last November, Immigration Minister Chris Alexander met with more than 400 people in Ottawa, mostly representatives of non-governmental organizations. These Service Provider Organizations contract with Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to deliver settlement services to immigrants. He told them, “You tell us what we need to get it right.” In this spirit, there are several significant weaknesses in the system that need to be addressed.

Atlantic Region Struggling to Retain Immigrants (
A new study by the Association of Atlantic Universities shows that despite efforts by east coast provinces to attract and retain immigrants, the region is struggling to do so. VOCM’s Danielle Barron reports.

Racist, Anti-Semitic Graffiti Marks Ottawa Over Passover Shabbat (Joshua Levitt,

Racist graffiti scarred a pedestrian underpass along the pathway of the Chamberlain Bridge, in downtown Ottawa, Ontario, over the Chol Hamoed Passover Shabbat weekend, Canada’s Sun News reported.

Who will tell the story? (Books And Authors,

For a recent exhibit called Enemy Aliens about Jewish refugees interned in Canada during the war, a curator recorded internees’ experiences, and those voices were the first ones visitors heard upon entering the exhibit. Three of those interviewed died before the exhibition opened, Goldberg says. The centre, like others across the country, is consulting with survivors on the best ways to use videotaped testimony. “We don’t want to exploit the voices [of survivors]. We want to make sure there is some pedagogical value in what we do.”

Anti-black, anti-Jew graffiti to be investigated as hate crime (

Jaws were literally dropping Saturday morning as runners, walkers and cyclists were forced to pass by a display of racist and anti-Semitic graffiti. The concrete underpass along the pathway at the foot of the Champlain Bridge in Ottawa featured two hate-fuelled, nonsensical statements. One, using a racial slur, read: "Deport N

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