Maytree News Headlines – February 14, 2011


Greater Toronto Summit 2011 – Press Releases (Canadian Newswire)
Day One of CivicAction’s Greater Toronto Summit 2011 saw more than 700 city region builders and civic enthusiasts address tough issues and big opportunities facing the Toronto region. Participants in the first day of the two-day, highly interactive event tackled key urban challenges and began building consensus on a collective action plan to improve the region’s economic, social, and environmental future.
CivicAction’s Greater Toronto Summit 2011 united more than 1000 city builders in a two-day conversation on the issues and opportunities facing the Greater Toronto region. In 23 sessions, the delegates covered a range of interesting and provocative subjects, charting a course for action at a regional level.

Update! Update! Successful integration into local communities – recommendations and good practice! (Cities of Migration)
The Bertelsmann Stiftung has updated its work on successful integration into local communities, with a new report offering 20 fresh examples of good practice, and 10 updated recommendations of local integration policy. Translated loosely as Designing Diversity (Diversität gestalte), Bertelsmanns new publication re-visits integration in 20 German cities five years after they were recognized as joint winners of the Carl Bertelsmann Prize competition, Integration In Local Communities, in 2005; co-sponsored by the German Federal Ministry of the Interior.

Immigration hits new high (The Province)
Canada admitted more permanent resident immigrants in 2010 than at any time in the past 50 years. Conservative MP Alice Wong, who represents the immigrant-rich riding of Richmond, said that 280,636 permanent residents were admitted in 2010.

Immigrant visas to drop 5 per cent: records (
New figures indicate the federal government hopes to reduce overall immigration next year by five per cent, mainly by cutting back on family reunification visas. Among the hardest hit by the lower immigration targets will be parents and grandparents seeking to join their children in Canada, according to numbers obtained from the Citizenship and Immigration Department through the Access to Information Act.

India, China top as Canada admits record immigrants in 2010 (Economic Times)
Though there is no break-down of country-wise figures, India and China remain top sources of immigration for Canada. On average, about 35, 000 Indians make Canada their new home in each year.

Adrian MacNair: Conservatives become the party of Big Immigration (National Post)
There is one rather shameful little boast, however, that cant go unanswered: These refugees played by the rules and came to Canada through legal streams, noted Minister Kenney. It is important to note that while Canada is maintaining its humanitarian tradition of providing a safe haven for legitimate refugees, we will not stand by while our immigration system is being abused by queue jumpers and human smugglers. Bill C-49, the Preventing Human Smugglers from Abusing Canadas Immigration System Act, sends a clear message that the abuse of our immigration system will not be tolerated.

New foreign farm worker rules to boost employer responsibilities (Alberta Famer)
Further to amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR), made pursuant to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, for the first time in Canada, employers of TFWs will be held responsible for not only their own non-compliance thereto, but also the non-compliance of their TFW employees as well.

A champion of change (Toronto Star)
It was a Toronto of a different era. Fifteen-year-old William Hubbard and his parents slaves who had escaped from Virginia and settled here would open their daily paper only to be confronted by raw prejudice… Yet young William Peyton Hubbard would go on to enter public life. His accomplishments included help for the most vulnerable, better transit and fire protection and strong, publicly owned hydroelectric and municipal water systems. All this as the city’s first black and first visible minority councillor.–a-champion-of-change

Resource paper: Rebuilding Professional Lives: Immigrant Professionals Working in the Ontario Settlement Sector (Settlement AtWork)
This study looks at the reality of a particular group of foreign-born and -trained professionals in Ontario. These are the professionals who did not get to practise their respective professions after immigration but acquired a new profession in the form of settlement work.

Corbella: Let’s change the tune on official multiculturalism (Calgary Herald)
About one dozen families who recently immigrated to Canada are demanding that the Louis Riel School Division in Winnipeg excuse their children from music and coed physical education programs for religious reasons. The families believe that music is un-Islamic – just like the Taliban believe and then imposed on the entire population of Afghanistan – and that physical education classes should be segregated by gender even in the elementary years.

Immigration appeals integral to democracy: lawyer (CBC)
A Calgary immigration lawyer says Canada’s refugee system must have checks and balances. In response to a speech in Ontario on Friday by federal Immigration Minister Jason Kenney, Gary Hansen said Canada’s immigration system needs independent reviews.

Reporting Live From the Land of Plenty (Stabroek News)
This piece is a response to an article, Canadian Guyanese longs to come home that appeared in the January 30th edition of Stabroek News. It isnt meant to be read as a criticism of this article, which enumerates the benefits of the Canadian experience for the Guyanese diaspora. Canada as a place for wealth and opportunity is a strong enough theme in both popular talk and I would argue, even seeps into the Caribbean unconscious. Yet such a belief is rarely coupled with a different, more pragmatic understanding of the situation for Guyanese people in Canada. Whenever confronting a picture the key is to not see in two toned terms or in overblown colour, nor to focus on one isolated dynamic. The point is clarity, and a broader analysis, simply for the sake of honesty.

Immigration minister supports ban on veiled voting; calls bill ‘reasonable’ (Winnipeg Free Press)
Immigration Minister Jason Kenney says a private members bill that would force people to show their faces when they vote is “reasonable.” A Quebec Conservative backbencher, Steven Blaney, rekindled the debate over veiled voters on Friday with the tabling of a bill that critics decry as an attempt to divide the electorate. Kenney came out in support of the proposed legislation during an interview Sunday on CTV’s Question Period.

On the fast track from Haiti to nowhere (Ottawa Citizen)
When the earthquake struck Haiti a year ago, Kelly Fontil faced the question every parent dreads: Was his daughter dead? What about his only grandchild, born in Port-au-Prince six months before? Luckily both survived, but now Fontil faces a new form of grief: Just months after the disaster, federal officials slammed the door on his appeal to bring the family to safety with him in Ottawa, despite letters of support from then-transport minister John Baird, as well as a senator and two MPs.

OMNI Television Announces Official Canadian Broadcast Partnership of IIFA 2011 (Canada Newswire)
OMNI Television announced today that, as the Official Canadian Broadcast Partner of the International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) 2011, it will broadcast unprecedented coverage of the three-day long weekend and awards celebration to Canadians when it makes its North American debut in Ontario this June.

Ottawa says high number of immigrants will help economic recovery (Hamilton Spectator)
The government says the number of immigrants welcomed to Canada last year, the highest number admitted in over 50 years, will help the countrys economic recovery. But critics say the emphasis placed on economic immigrants is hurting other kinds of migrants, including refugees and overseas family members waiting to be reunited with loved ones in Canada.–ottawa-says-high-number-of-immigrants-will-help-economic-recovery


Refugee Sandwich Lunch & Live Streaming Event with Peter Showler (Refugee Research Network)
Saturday, February 19, 1-3 pm EST A Washington, DC area lunch and live streaming discussion on Canada’s asylum process.

Mass detention of 300 Tamil migrants cost $18-million, says Canada Border Services Agency (Hill Times)
The detention of more than 300 Tamil migrants who landed on Vancouver Island last summer aboard a rusty Thai cargo ship called the MV Sun Sea has so far cost $18-million, the Canada Border Services Agency says. With 107 of the Tamils still in custodyand only five so far publicly linked to accusations of even indirect links to Tamil Tiger fighters in Sri Lankathe high cost for the mass detention has prompted opposition MPs to renew calls on Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s (Calgary-Southwest, Alta.) government to withdraw a controversial bill it claims will counter human smuggling.

Looking inside the Sun Sea (National Post)
Federal investigators have been interviewing those on board and chasing leads in Southeast Asia. The passengers have been telling their stories at refugee hearings and in court. The evidence is shedding new light on the bold migrant smuggling operation that has cost taxpayers $25-million and led the government to draft a new anti-human smuggling law.

Fear not, Canada (Ottawa Citizen)
It was inevitable that the opposition parties and much of the media would immediately express fear that Canada’s sovereignty might be compromised by the possibility of a new border agreement with the United States. This claim centres on fears that our privacy might be invaded and our generous refugee and immigration systems forced to undergo reform.

Immigration abuse must stop: minister (National Post)
We will not stand by while our immigration system is abused by those seeking to jump the immigration queue and pay human smugglers to come here illegally, Mr. Kenney said, making a pitch for Bill C-49, which would make the trafficking of people a criminal offence.


Debate: Canada needs a national child-care policy (National Post)
As Canada gears up for a possible federal election, child care has roared back onto the public agenda. Tuning into the media on child care last week was a strangely déjà-vu experience. Is this 2011 or are we back in the run-up to the 2006 federal election? The public discourse on childcare has not changed in the past five years; but, regrettably, while this sterile and shopworn debate is playing out in the media and Parliament, another generation of families and children are the losers.

Goar: Nation needs dialogue, not a questionnaire, on the budget (Toronto Star)
The CivicAction Alliance, which brings together the Toronto regions thinkers and leaders, is preparing its checklist right now. It will press for a modern employment insurance system reflecting the realities of todays labour market, in which millions have temporary, part-time or contract jobs. It will also point out that without a national housing strategy, the country will muddle along with uncoordinated programs and unreliable funding. The Caledon Institute of Social Policy is urging the government to replace the current hodgepodge of welfare and tax breaks for severely disabled Canadians with a basic minimum income.–goar-nation-needs-dialogue-not-a-questionnaire-on-the-budget

People on east and west coasts in poorer health than other Canadians: study (Winnipeg Free Press)
Canadians in low-income areas on the east and west coasts are up to three times more likely to suffer from chronic illnesses and mental health problems than less affluent people in other regions, a new study suggests. The unique research found that people in deprived neighbourhoods on Canadas Atlantic coast were 20 per cent more likely to report poor health more than twice the number in the Prairies and Central Canada. The figure rose to 30 per cent on the Pacific coast.

More affordable housing needed like in Winnipeg: Luna (Portage Daily Graphic)
In the wake of a newly announced affordable housing project in Winnipeg, Portage la Prairie’s top immigration official says this city needs more affordable housing for newcomers. He also says that’s not likely to happen. The Government of Canada, the Province of Manitoba and the City of Winnipeg Friday announced $2.27 million in funding for the WestEnd Commons, a 24-unit affordable housing project being developed by St. Matthews Non Profit Housing Inc. and the Grain of Wheat Church Community.

Sultan finds childhood ‘poverty’ exists in West Vancouver (Vancouver Sun)
A West Vancouver Liberal MLA is calling for action on childcare and settlement programs for immigrants after an analysis he performed uncovered some unsettling trends among low-income families in one of Canada’s wealthiest communities. Ralph Sultan, MLA for West Vancouver-Capilano, made the recommendations in a discussion paper called Childhood Poverty in West Vancouver: Fact or Fiction, a 100-page analysis of census data due to be released to media and other groups in the next few days.


Toronto taps into migrant employment pool (Council of Europe)
Close to 600,000 immigrants have settled in the city of Toronto since the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC) started in 2003. “The benefits we can derive for our city region from this influx of talent, energy and new ideas are enormous. However, we can only enjoy success if everyone has an equal chance to contribute- and this takes deliberate decision making and action”, says a statement published in Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC) 2009 annual report.

Employers’ Important Role in Skilled Immigration (Computer & Communications Industry Association)
At a Brookings event Monday on high skilled immigration policy, Dr. Jeanne Batalova of the Migration Policy Institute presented her Brain Waste study on how many college-educated immigrants are working in unskilled jobs. The study also seemed to point to the importance of employers having a role in the selection of skilled immigrants.


City learning seminars set (Windsor Star)
Windsorites are invited to attend a free event hosted by the City of Windsor’s Employment and Social Services Department. The sessions will be hosted by Supportive Approaches through Innovative Learning, which promotes learning and explores communication, employability, decision-making, literacy, homelessness and poverty.

A successful city (Belonging Community: Being at home in an urban neighbourhood)
So how then to move towards success? Long-terms goals are not achieved without short-term behavioural changes. Colleta outlined three steps:
1. Have a measurable goal. It drives behaviour;
2. Have an achievable goal. It gets buy-in; and
3. Have a short-term goal. That drives short-term behaviour.
All of this, Coletta explained, is propelled by a final element: quality of leadership. She left the crowd with a final question, Does Toronto have the leadership in place to make this happen?

McCallion calls on Ford to boost municipal co-operation (Globe and Mail)
Mayor Rob Ford was unable to attend a panel discussion with regional mayors at the Greater Toronto Summit on Friday because of his medical condition, but that didnt stop the Mississauga mayor from calling on him to increase municipal co-operation in the coming years.

Royson: Lovers of Toronto, take heart (Toronto Star)
There is so much happening all at once in our city that its easy to be pushed and pulled in all philosophical and political directions and end up in a hysterical bubble or apathetic stupor. Or just be discombobulated and drop out of sight. Some 800 city builders from all walks of life were swimming upstream Thursday and Friday, building hope where despair threatens, stoking a conversation thats dropped to a whisper at city hall, inviting citizens to fill the void and help build the Toronto region into a global force.–royson-lovers-of-toronto-take-heart

Moving Our Region: Transportation for the Future – Seminar 4 (IMFG)
Moving Our Region is a series of four seminars bringing together noted transportation policy-makers, practitioners, and academics to discuss critical issues that will profoundly influence the future growth and prosperity of the Greater Toronto-Hamilton Area (GTHA), including: what a modern transportation system for the GTHA might look like, how to pay for it, whether federal policies should support a national transportation strategy, and how to gain public support.

Conference aims to inspire (Brantford Expositor)
A youth leadership conference held Saturday aimed to inspire young people to become involved in their community in positive ways, said organizer and Brant federal NDP candidate Marc Laferriere. The non-partisan event, sponsored by the Brant NDP and the young New Democrats, was held at Bellview Community Hall. “The goal is to connect youth in the community with leaders who took on roles at a young age,” Laferriere said.

Monday’s Headlines (Spacing)
A round-up of mainstream media Toronto headlines related to City Council, City Identity, Heritage, GTA Politics, Transit, Transportation, Environment, Police & Crime, Culture Attractions, History and Other News.

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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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