Immigration & Diversity news headlines – November 4, 2011


Media Advisory – New Research Findings on Diversity in Elected Office (Canada Newswire)
DiverseCity: The Greater Toronto Leadership Project is the latest project of Maytree and the Greater Toronto CivicAction Alliance, funded in part by the government of Ontario. With its nine initiatives, the project is changing the face of our region’s leadership. It is expanding our networks, strengthening our private and public institutions, advancing our knowledge on the role of diversity in leadership and tracking our progress. For more information, and to read the full report visit

Thunder Bay Immigration Forum (TBMA)
The sessions will focus on what still needs to be done to be a welcoming community and how to bring about lasting change and support to continue as a partnership towards successful retention and subsequently promote Thunder Bay and North Western Ontario as the place immigrants want to invest and raise their families.

Two Day Training Workshop: Cultural Competency, Diversity, Anti-Racism/Anti-Oppression In Mental Health/Addiction (Across Boundaries)
In this two-day training workshop, participants will gain practical knowledge of best practices of a holistic client-centred approach to care within an anti-racism/anti-oppression framework.

OMNI TV Launches National Newscasts (Broadcaster)
Expanding its diverse array of multilingual news programming, OMNI Television today announced the addition of three national newscasts to bring Cantonese, Mandarin, and Punjabi-speaking viewers even closer to news that matters to these growing language communities five days a week. Launching Monday, Nov. 7, the new half-hour OMNI NEWS: Cantonese National Edition and OMNI NEWS: Mandarin National Edition shine a light on the day’s most important news every Monday-Friday from a national and international perspective. The new half-hour OMNI NEWS: Punjabi National Edition launches Monday, Nov. 14.

Community strategy eyed to help immigrants (Michelle Ruby, Expositor Staff)
Canada can seem like a land of promise to those looking in from other countries around the world. But life isn’t always easy for immigrants who struggle with finding employment and battle to have their academic credentials recognized. They are often confused by Canada’s health-care system and are left feeling isolated, particularly in small cities and towns, where there may be little social support.

Canada’s immigration system is badly in need of fixing (Chris Selley, National Post)
Refugee issues are inherently messy, and I don’t envy anyone tasked with addressing them. But Canadians need to start engaging this issue consistently, not just when there’s a boat full of brown people heading towards Vancouver Island. Roughly as many Hungarian asylum-seekers have been arriving in a week at Pearson as there were Sri Lankan asylum-seekers on the MV Sun Sea. During the first six months of this year, three times as many Hungarian asylum-seekers arrived in Canada as there were Sri Lankans on the Sun Sea. And if you are uniquely spooked by Tamils, you should know that 60% of the Sri Lankans who applied for refugee status in Canada in 2010 did not arrive on the Sun Sea. There’s no good reason to be less concerned about their character just because they arrived in dribs and drabs and by airplane.

New plan part of Harper government’s effort to limit immigration from India and China (Andy Radia, Yahoo! News)
Immigration Minister Jason Kenney, the man credited with securing the “ethnic vote” for the Conservatives in the last federal election, has seemingly angered some of those same “ethnic” voters. In an announcement on Wednesday, Kenney said the government will hold immigration levels steady for 2012, but rejig the selection criteria for skilled immigrants, giving preference to those who are young, fluent in English/French and have Canadian work and education credentials, the Toronto Star reports.

Why a Name Goes a Long Way (Drex Jancar, The Mark)
I’ve worked with young people for 11 years. I’ve witnessed many turn their lives around after volunteering in activities that genuinely interest them. Volunteering does more than just open up opportunities for these kids – it can instill in them strong social values, too. So how can we get more young people involved in volunteering? Most people who have no volunteering experience think of it as a “good” thing, but not necessarily interesting. We need to counteract that perception. I believe it starts with re-imagining the “volunteering” label.

SlutWalk Toronto Releases An Anti-Racism Statement—And It’s Good! (Akiba Solomon, Colorlines)
The Toronto activists who created SlutWalk have officially weighed in on what critics of the nascent movement have described as a crippling lack of racial and cultural diversity, historical knowledge, and sensitivity to structural differences in power and privilege.–and_its_good.html

Multiculturalism hardly ‘an insidious assault’ (Barbara Yaffe, Vancouver Sun)
Salim Mansur has written the mother of all politically incorrect books – slamming multiculturalism, a policy that has become so integral to Western societies such as Canada. The Calcutta-born political scientist, who teaches at the University of Western Ontario in London, says what few others will: All cultures are not equal, and immigration from Islamic countries has been harmful to the West.

The Canadian experience with multiculturalism could indeed prove useful for Thailand (Vasana Chinvarakorn, Bangkok Post)
The trend seems toward even greater diversity down the road. Every year, Canada accepts about 250,000 immigrants from countries and cultures as far apart as China and India, the Middle East, Africa, Eastern Europe and Latin America. Among the newcomers, 85% will successfully apply for citizenship status in 3 or 5 years. And it is projected that up to 30% of Canada’s population, now hovering around 31 million, will be foreign-born by 2031. “Much of the population growth in Canada is from immigration, rather than from reproduction,” commented Mary Ballantyne, OACAS’s executive director, to a Thai delegation on a recent trip to study how Canada’s experience with multiculturalism might be applied to Thailand.

Hardball player heads multicultural spin shop (Sean Holman, The Chief)
Premier Christy Clark swept into office with a promise to improve the provincial government’s “transparency.” But her administration has just hired a new communications director who supported stopping the public from finding out who bankrolled a Coquitlam-based political group. Brian Bonney, the B.C. Liberal Party’s operations director between 2006 and ’07, was put on the public payroll last month as head of the government’s new multicultural communications office. That means he’ll be working closely with long-time political associate and former business partner Harry Bloy, the Minister of State for Multiculturalism and the sole MLA who supported Clark’s bid for the Liberal leadership.

Canada’s Immigration Numbers at Core of Debate (Matthew Little, Epoch Times)
No problem confronts MPs the way immigration does. It’s in their face more than any other issue, waiting at their constituency offices with tales of wives stuck a world away or children born in Canada about to be forced back to a country they’ve never known. Rick Dykstra, parliamentary secretary for Immigration Minister Jason Kenney, says he has a staff member in his constituency office dedicated to immigration. MPs who sit with him on the Standing Committee on Immigration and Citizenship speak often of concerned constituents with a long list of complaints and often desperate stories.

Why so few opinions from women? (Shari Graydon, Montreal Gazette)
Just to be clear, I’m frequently engaged, provoked and enlightened by op-eds written by men. But women make up 52 per cent of the population and more than 60 per cent of university graduates, and they now work in virtually all fields. They also experience many aspects of life very differently than men, and often have unique insights as a result. I think we’d all benefit from hearing more from them – and research into corporate performance and national competitiveness supports this view.

AtWork newsletter (Settlement AtWork)
News, blog posts, events, RFPs, job postins for the Ontario settlement sector.


E-Chronicle Vol. 6 #7, 1 November 2011 (CCR)
a) New report highlights harsh impacts of DNA tests
b) Repeal of source country class
c) Proposed new proof of language requirement for citizenship
d) The CCR Youth Network Hits the Streets. Join them!
e) Register before November 4th for the upcoming CCR Consultation, Montreal, 24 – 26 November 2011
f) For refugee participants – Apply now to the 2012 Amina Malko Fund and the Refugee Leadership Development Program
g) Resources from the CCR

Israeli ‘deserter’ who refused to destroy Gaza tunnels denied asylum in Canada (Adrian Humphreys, National Post)
An Israeli army reservist who deserted after refusing to destroy terrorist tunnels in Gaza, then sought political asylum in Canada, has been ordered to return home. He was also branded a draft dodger, rather than a legitimate conscientious objector, in a court decision that rejected his claim the Israeli military routinely breached international humanitarian law.

Government slammed door on refugees (Carol Sanders, Winnipeg Free Press)
While Canada’s proudly welcomed 700,000 refugees since the Second World War it has silently kept the door shut on certain groups over the years, says the curator of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. “It has been a little bit quiet about the people we don’t allow,” Armando Perla told a conference at the University of Manitoba Thursday. War resisters, homosexual refugees and Roma refugees from Eastern Europe haven’t received a warm welcome, said the refugee from El Salvador who’s working on the refugees exhibit for the new museum. If history’s taught the world anything, it’s that human rights and refugee protection go hand in hand, said lawyer David Matas.


Canada Learning Bond vouchers go to 60,000 low income families in Toronto (Canadian Immigrant)
Smart SAVER, a project of the Omega Foundation, funded by the government of Canada’s Education Savings Community Outreach program, made the announcement at a special event hosted by Daniels Corporation on Nov. 3. “I’m so happy hearing this news,” says Luke’s mother Arlene Pimentel, who immigrated to Canada from the Philippines in 2008. Pimentel who is a health care assistant while studying nursing, earns well under $41,544, the maximum net income that makes an individual or family eligible for the Canada Learning Bond. Any child born in 2004 or later who lives within the postal area code starting with letter ‘M’ and whose family receives the National Child Benefit Supplement is eligible to receive it.

Real work begins as Living Wage Report released (Martha Tanner, Kingston This Week)
After months of behind-the-scenes work, the Kingston Community Roundtable on Poverty Reduction launched its Living Wage report last week and is asking Kingstonians to take up the cause. Written by the Roundtable’s Living Wage Working Group and published by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, the report concludes that a family of four, with two parents working full-time, needs a combined before-tax salary of $63,531, or an hourly wage of $16.29 each, to meet an adequate standard of living.


Canada plans to avoid possible worker shortages by increasing immigrants in 2012 (Allena Davis, Oye! Times)
Canada’s Immigration Minister Jason Kenney discusses the type of immigrants Canada is looking forward to welcome in 2012. Kenny said Ottawa has decided to embrace at least 55,000 federal skilled workers next year. The focus on increasing federal skilled workers will eventually get a move on and raise the number of white-collar and skilled workers in Canada. According to the Immigration Department’s annual report, on the whole immigration levels for 2012 will revolve around 255,000.


Friday’s Headlines (Spacing Toronto)
A round-up of mainstream media Toronto headlines related to City Hall, Fort York Bridge, Bike Lanes, Occupy Toronto 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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