Maytree News Headlines – January 10, 2011


Meet Louroz Mercader: “When we see ourselves in our elected officials it tells us that we are understood and that our issues matter.” (DiverseCity blog)
School4Civics is a DiverseCity program that trains and mentors candidates to run for elected office or manage election campaigns. In this video, School4Civics participant Louroz Mercader recounts his experience running as a candidate in the Mississauga elections.

CBOC Leader’s Roundtable on Immigration to convene this month (LEAP’s blog)
The Conference Board of Canada(CBoc)‘s Leader’s Roundtable on Immigration (LRI) will meet in Ottawa this month for a two day conference to discuss updates from the CBoC regarding the economic imperative for optimizing Canada’s immigration system amongst other key immigrations issues. Government officials, business executives and industry experts participate in the LRI and act as a sounding board and working group in order to implement the necessary steps to achieve improvement in the immigration system.

Jamaican woman humiliated by Toronto grilling (Jamaica Observer)
NATALIE Cole had hoped that her visit to a friend in Canada last November would have been a pleasurable and memorable first-time trip out of Jamaica. However, she told the Sunday Observer that her encounter with immigration officials on her arrival at the Lester B Pearson International Airport in Toronto turned into one of the worst experiences of her life.

Come from aways are moving to PEI (News Brunswick Business Journal)
Just before Christmas, Statistics Canada published its third-quarter 2010 estimate of the population of Canada and the provinces. The report confirmed that New Brunswick’s population continues to edge up and was estimated to be 752,800 as of October 1, up by 1,100 over the previous quarter.

Working illegally in Canada can lead to legal residency (Toronto Sun)
Would-be immigrants to Canada can use illegal work experience to help bolster their application for permanent residency, according to federal documents obtained by QMI Agency. The documents, a series of emails between senior officials within Citizenship and Immigration Canada, starts with an unnamed official questioning whether illegal work experience can count for someone seeking to enter Canada under the provincial nominee program, a program designed to fill specialized labour shortages in Canada.

Immigrant success stories made harder (Financial Post)
In many ways, the Shipmans are the poster-couple for a program that, until it stopped reviewing applicants in mid-November, aimed to keep aspiring entrepreneurs in a province that struggles to retain immigrants: Only 25% of families who arrive as provincial nominees remain in Prince Edward Island, according to a 2009 study by the University of Prince Edward Island. On Dec. 1, the province launched a new immigrant retention strategy, which leaves one wondering, why cut the PNP?

Local Sudanese community members head to Toronto to cast ballots in ‘historic’ referendum (Waterloo Record)
Joyous members of the region’s Sudanese community smiled and sang songs as they filled two school buses headed to Toronto for a monumental referendum vote. The vote Sunday is expected to separate the south of Sudan — the largest African country — from the north, creating the world’s newest nation.–local-sudanese-community-members-head-to-toronto-to-cast-ballots-in-historic-referendum

Sudan referendum a last act for York Weston centre (Globe and Mail)
While the Southern Sudan Referendum heralds a new beginning in Africa, it also signals the end of the road for the organization hosting the voting centre in Toronto, the York Weston Community Centre. The imminent closing of the settlement and community services organization stems from a recent decision by the federal government to cut Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) funding for settlement agencies found in regions that are attracting fewer newcomers, especially in Ontario. In making its decision, CIC evaluated all agencies for cost effectiveness, client outcomes, organizational capacity, and other performance criteria.

Canadian immigrants, housing and social relationships (Belonging Community: Being at home in an urban neighbourhood blog)
Ray and Preston also found that immigrants who lived in apartment buildings were just as likely as others to:

* express a sense of belonging, even through the fleeting interactions with their neighbours, and
* to have a majority of friends from other ethnic groups, a telling rebuttal to the idea that diversity dilutes trust in others.

They concluded that more thoughtful building designs and public policy would improve the social isolation that many immigrants — and apartment–dwellers — experience, making better neighbours.

Ethnic diversity thrives in Drayton Valley (
Drayton Valley is commonly known as a town where the oil and gas flows day and night and where the white collar male works for a steady income. However, beneath the oil and gas lies people from a vast array of ethnic groups such as Filipino, West African, Indo-Canadians and Muslims who make up Drayton Valley and contribute to making the town a better place to live in. The town illustrates it diversity in several different ways such as having a Lebanese-Canadian Mayor, a Chief Administrative Officer as an Indo-Canadian and many different business owners in the town that come from different cultures.


Report: “Refugee Mental Health: Promising Practices and Partnership Building Resources
This guide is for people who work with refugees in Canada, particularly those who provide settlement, health and other social support services. The material is written for front line workers, program managers and the leaders of agencies, and is informed by their ideas and expertise.

THE EXHIBITION – “Do You See What I See?” – Refugee children photograph their own lives
This project gave refugee children a chance to explore the totality of the refugee experience; to show the world both the differences and similarities of their lives. In the workshop process a series of images and texts worthy of exhibition have been created. The images will make a journey back to the refugee camps and to the capitals of the host countries. People will experience refugee life through the voices and visions of the children, who are the true experts on their own lives.

“We are Jose” campaign asks Ottawa to nix Salvadoran father’s BC deportation (Winnipeg Free Press)
Thirteen years have passed since Jose Figueroa escaped vicious death threats and a gunfire attack in his Latin American homeland for backing guerilla forces that opposed a murderous regime. Even as a new peace dawned, the Salvadoran was forced to flee, arriving in Canada with high hopes of turning a refugee claim into citizenship. He and his wife joined a church, went to work, had three babies, and paid for any medical bills from their own pockets while awaiting acceptance from the authorities. It appeared the fresh start he had helped bring to his country was just around the corner for his own life, too. Instead, the 43-year-old was suddenly ordered deported.


Urbanization is the Main Cure for Poverty (Doug Saunders)
A feature interview with Steve Paikin of The Agenda about Arrival City: The Final Migration And Our Next World.

B.C.’s hidden new face of poverty (The Globe and Mail)
Increasingly, the poor of Metro Vancouver are like the Kokeihis: scattered outside the urban core, making them all the harder to see, much less help. According to data supplied exclusively to The Globe and Mail, the Downtown Eastside is among the areas in the city whose wealth has grown the most between 1970 and 2005, though that change has been driven by pockets of prosperity rather than an overall jump in the standard of living.


Transit Deserts & Hulchanski’s Three Cities (Martin Prosperity Insitute)
Hulchanski’s updated report incorporates analysis of the transit challenges faced by City 3 and identifies that City 3 has only 19 subways stops nearby, which is less than half of the 40 stops near City 1. Residents of Toronto’s inner suburbs are not simply less advantaged in terms of income changes over time. They also have inferior access to subways and streetcars. Attempts to mitigate Toronto’s growing income polarization are well-targeted to transit.

A Tool for Building Resilient Cities (emergent by design blog)
Ok, so the idea is, how can we strengthen those things so that a community can weather tough economic times or uncertainty? I was thinking something along the lines of Ushahidi meets sustainability. Ushahidi is an open source platform that was originally used to map incidents of violence and peace efforts in Kenya, and has since expanded to be a customizable tool for information collection, visualization, and interactive mapping. With just a mobile phone, you can upload info that gets transformed into a real-time visualization.

How To Build Your Own City (enRoute Magazine)
In places like Calgary and Portland, regular folks are taking their neighbourhoods into their own hands.

A comprehensive intercultural city strategy: Education (Council of Europe)
In education, establish a few schools and colleges as intercultural flagships, with high investment in staff training, intercultural curriculum, co-operative learning models, closer links with parents and community, twinning links with mono-cultural schools, and citizenship education. (mentions a Cities of Migration Good Idea)

Spacing Toronto Monday Headlines
A round-up of mainstream media Toronto headlines related to City Council, GTA/Ontario Politics, Heritage Buildings, Transportation, Police & Crime, Buildings, The Great Outdoors, History and Other News.

Rob Ford threatens to fire city managers who don’t trim budgets (Globe and Mail)
As the mayor revealed his first budget – balanced in large part by the previous year’s surplus – he also told Torontonians they can look forward to a 10-cent TTC fare hike as of Feb. 1. Mr. Ford, who promised a “no tax increase, no major service cut” budget, said he doesn’t like the recommended hike and pledged to keep working on a way to avoid the increase.

What makes for a major service cut? (National Post)
Toronto Political Panel: We pick apart the language to ask just how is the Ford team defining “major” cuts, and what’s being put off til later so that Ford can have a smooth first year in office.


Social Finance Round Up: The Social Impact Bond in 7 Easy Steps ( produces a weekly round up featuring social finance related news, insights, job openings, and events. We source the content for these round ups from Twitter, an RSS reader, and directly from our community of social finance practitioners. This is their round up for the week of January 10, 2011.

TiEQuest 2011 is now accepting contestant applications (TIEQuest)
The official launch of TiEQuest 2011, Canada’s largest business venture plan competition, was held November 16 at the MaRS Centre. Registration of contestants for TiEQuest 2011 is now open. The deadline for the submission of applications is January 31, 2011.

Participant Application Form: Becoming a Social Entrepreneur in the City
“Becoming a Social Entrepreneur in the City” is a weekend workshop for young leaders in Toronto, happening January 28-30, 2011. The purpose of the workshop is to build leadership skills and business/community knowledge amongst enterprising youth. Workshop hosts and DiverseCity fellows, Karen Kun and Farheen Khan.


The forgotten caregivers of pension reform, by Sherri Torjman (Globe and Mail)
Few things can be said with certainty in a rapidly changing world. But there is one thing we know for sure: The federal, provincial and territorial ministers of finance have not been talking about caregivers in their recent discussions on pension reform. They should be in light of the aging population, growing demands on health care and increasing pressure on caregivers – Canada’s precious but undervalued resource.

Becoming Visible 2011- PDF (Al Etmanski blog)
To prepare this New Year’s treat I asked those I profiled or referenced in my 2010 blogs to answer this question: What would you like to become more visible in 2011? Fifty-eight responded.

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Communications in social services/social change, immigration, diversity & inclusion in Toronto. Wannabe librarian, interested in nonprofit tech innovation.

Communications in social services/social change, immigration, diversity & inclusion in Toronto. Wannabe librarian, interested in nonprofit tech innovation.

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