Immigration & Diversity news headlines – February 1, 2012


Canadians Are Divided on the Actual Effect of Immigration (Angus Reid)
Younger respondents endorse the concept of the “mosaic” while middle-aged and older Canadians prefer the “melting pot”. People in Canada are split when assessing immigration, and only three-in-ten believe the country should continue to be a mosaic, a new Angus Reid Public Opinion poll has found. In the online survey of a representative sample of 1,005 Canadian adults, 39 per cent of respondents believe that immigration is having a positive effect in Canada, while 39 per cent think it is having a negative effect.

Multiculturalism exposed as a sham (David Warren, The Ottawa Citizen)
So, is “multiculturalism” dead now? This is a question that might have come to anyone’s mind, while reading through news reports and commentary on the Shafia “honour killings.” And I don’t just mean after the verdict was announced on Sunday, but from the beginning of the Kingston trial. For the indulgence of “multiculturalism” went right out the first window, on Day One.

Canadians divided over immigration (Kevin Usselman, 660 news)
Angus Reid reports that since September 2010, the proportion of Canadians who think immigration is having a positive impact on the country, has increased. The online survey of just over one thousand adults, found 39 per cent of respondents believe immigration is having a positive effect in Canada, while 39 per cent think it’s having a negative effect–canadians-divided-over-immigration

National teacher survey shows diversity as a key challenge in Canadian classrooms (Digital Journal)
According to a recent national survey reporting on nearly 10,000 Canadian classes, one in every six students has an identified learning exceptionality. In addition, more than one in ten students in these classes have challenges understanding the school’s language of instruction. The survey, conducted by the Canadian Teachers’ Federation (CTF) last October, drew responses from nearly 3,800 teachers, the largest number obtained in a CTF online survey to date.

Harper Announces “Major Transformation” of Canadian Immigration (David Cohen, Canada Immigration Newsletter)
Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, this past week, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper outlined a plan for broad and lasting economic change in Canada. Key to this plan is ‘significant reform of our immigration system’. Standing in front of an international audience of state representatives and private businesspeople, Harper stated: “We will ensure that, while we respect our humanitarian obligations and family reunification objectives, we make our economic and labour force needs the central goal of our immigration efforts in the future”.

Canada’s role in the global selective abortion debate (Prabhat Jha, Toronto Star)
In an editorial published this month in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, Dr. Rajendra Kale called for a ban on access to the gender results of ultrasound tests in Canada. He argued that banning access in this country — to prevent what is very likely an uncommon practice of selective abortion — would influence decisions in India and China. We do not yet know the scale of selective abortion in Canada. In contrast, up to 12 million females were aborted selectively before birth in India between 1980 and 2010 — about half in the last decade alone. Ultrasound and abortion are legal in India, but determining the gender before birth has been illegal since the early 1990s. The economist and Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen has calculated that 100 million women are missing in the world, most of them in Asia, and most because of selective abortion. Should Canadians even be concerned about families 15,000 kilometres away? Leaving aside any personal stance on reproductive choice or questions of morality, what is at stake for Canada?–canada-s-role-in-the-global-selective-abortion-debate

Preventing Domestic Violence (CBC Metro Morning)
Guest host Jane Hawtin spoke with Pat Sisson, she is an Intake Supervisor with the Children’s Aid Society of Toronto , and with Farrah Khan. She is a counsellor at the Barbara Schlifer Clinic.

There is no honour in domestic violence (Sikander Ziad Hashmi, Toronto Star)
If there is a silver lining in this terrible tragedy, it is that imams and Muslim community leaders have come together to take concrete steps to combat domestic and honour violence. After all, the Prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him), who is regarded as a role model by Muslims, emphasized kind treatment of women repeatedly. He never hit, let alone killed, a woman and is reported to have said: “The best of you is the one who is best to his women.”–there-is-no-honour-in-domestic-violence

Canada looks for ways to prevent honour killings in wake of Shafia trial (Colin Freeze, Globe and Mail)
British Crown lawyers are trained in bringing perpetrators of “honour crimes” to justice. Immigrant boys in Sweden perform in plays against domestic violence. Muslim interest groups who challenge such violence have formed in the United States. This is all taking place because young, immigrant women were so gruesomely sent to their graves by male relatives that people in these countries banded together to say “never again.” And now, observers are asking which long-term lessons Canada will learn from the Shafia trial. How will police, teachers, social workers, and immigrants join forces to prevent any more women from meeting horrific fates?

Anti-immigration groups organise against book that exposes population myths (Ian Angus, International Journal of Socialist Renewal)
Simon Butler and I wrote Too Many People? Population, Immigration, and the Environmental Crisis to promote discussion among environmental activists about two questions:
Is population growth a significant cause of the global environmental crisis?
Should the environmental movement support population reduction programs as solutions to environmental problems?

The Human Element: Why is there no Canadian strategy on Mandarin? (Joanna Wong , Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada)
Why is there no national Canadian strategy for learning Mandarin, the language of the world’s fastest growing economy? Whether Canadians want to thrive at a business banquet in Shanghai or simply make friends with the 26,000 new Chinese immigrants arriving in Canada each year, some familiarity with Mandarin just makes sense. But while 300 million Chinese are sweating it out learning English, Canada has yet to take national action to educate new Chinese speakers.

The ridiculous language debate (Nick Noorani)
Sometimes, I just don’t get people. I am talking about the brouhaha that has suddenly erupted after the Immigration Minister talked about insisting on language proficiency for workers coming to Canada. Now had he insisted on us learning Swahili or Sanskrit, I would have understood the media and other “experts” with their whiney, hand-wrangling comments that imply a grave injustice being done to immigrants! In the past few years, I have fought for immigrants’ rights, yet I am bewildered at this response! Here is the fact. Yes, immigrants or anyone in this country MUST have English or French language skills. Those are our official languages, people! This is a logical requirement of residents to this country! First off, no one cares what language you speak at home, so this has nothing to do with infringing on immigrants’ culture or preserving their language.

Canadian Supplier Diversity Conference 2012 (Diversity Business Network)
The Canadian Supplier Diversity Conference 2012, presented by RBC offers an interactive & engaging conference featuring presentations by global leaders from the United Kingdom, United States and Canada, keynote address from Stephen Frost, Head of Diversity for London 2012 Olympic Games, case studies, Q&A, exhibits, workshops and networking.

Meet Waterloo’s emerging young entrepreneurs (Katherine Scarrow, Globe and Mail)
On Jan. 19, 2012, the team from Report on Small Business invited dozens of startup owners to attend a networking event at the Communitech office in Kitchener, Ont. We hosted a live photo blog and shot video as a way to introduce our audience to these up-and-comers, all of whom have big ideas and grand ambitions

Refugees and new immigrants to be welcomed by U of M students (Shuja Safavi, The Manitoban)
Two University of Manitoba students have initiated a project with the mission of providing refugees and new immigrants with the essentials they need to better transition into Winnipeg. Lydia Gindy and Veronica Alexanders, have initiated a project, called: Welcome Home Immigration and Refugee Packages (WHIRP).

Mortgage lending tightens for self-employed, immigrants (Susan Pigg, Toronto Star)
It’s going to be tougher for the self employed, new immigrants and higher-risk borrowers to get a mortgage as concerns continue to mount over the state of Canada’s housing market. CIBC’s wholesale mortgage arm, FirstLine, quietly announced Tuesday that it will no longer accept new applications from “stated income” homebuyers who can’t prove they have the annual net income to qualify for home loans.–mortgage-cmhc-firstline-ottawa-self-employed-new-immigrants-housing-market

Islamophobia in Canada: A Primer (Fathima Cader and Sumayya Kassamali, New Socialist)
In this primer, we do not attempt to cover every instance of Islamophobia in Canada in the past decade. Rather, we provide an overview of its broad assumptions, particularly focusing on two themes that have proven central to discussions about Muslims: sexism and violence. In offering this analysis, we stress that responses to Islamophobia must be placed within the context of Canada’s ongoing conservative political shift — from its increased military engagements around the world to its anti-immigrant policies at home, and from its vast cuts in social service funding to its ever-increasing levels of state surveillance. While numerous civil liberties and human rights organizations have reported on the rise of anti-Muslim hate crimes in Canada, we emphasize that Islamophobia is not just interpersonal: it is systemic. In fighting it, therefore, we must engage with the many other forms of oppression that also organize Canadian society.

Refusal rate of visitors’ visas at its peak: Liberal (South Asian Focus)
The refusal rate of visitor visas has skyrocketed under the current Conservative government, Liberal MPs charged at a series of community outreach meetings and town halls they held across the GTA last week. That is what’s really happening behind the smoke-and-mirrors thrown up by Citizenship and Immigration Canada Minister Jason Kenney through the Super Visa, and the temporary, two-year parental sponsorship freeze, they alleged.

February is Black History Month in Toronto (City of Toronto)
On behalf of Toronto City Council, Mayor Rob Ford has proclaimed February as Black History Month – celebrating the history, heritage and contributions of African-Canadians. Many private events will be happening across Toronto, and City divisions will offer programming throughout the month. Toronto Museums will host film, theatre and children’s activities. Montgomery’s Inn presents the true story of Joshua Glover, who escaped slavery and ended up working at the inn. Mackenzie House gives visitors an opportunity to learn about the 19th century Black press in Toronto.


Thought refugee reforms were settled? Think again (Kristen Shane, Embassy)
“It’s expected that some form of bill will be introduced in mid February to introduce those changes,” said Peter Showler, a former IRB chairperson who maintains contact with insiders and is currently the director of the Refugee Forum focused on refugee law and research at the University of Ottawa. “The changes in general will be more in line with what the government originally proposed in Bill C-11, before it compromised as a minority government.” Other refugee advocates hearing from multiple sources inside and outside the Immigration and Refugee Board and Citizenship and Immigration Canada echoed Mr. Showler’s February timeline.

Refugee Integration: Key concerns and areas for further research (CCR)
In November and December 2011 the Canadian Council for Refugees consulted with settlement
practitioners, private sponsors, academics and other stakeholders, on issues relating to the
integration of refugees in Canada. The objective was to identify current priority concerns regarding refugee integration and related
areas for further research.

Human smuggling operation busted (Daniel Proussalidis, Toronto Sun)
In a human smuggling operation gone sour, around 200 Sri Lankan refugee claimants hoping to come to Canada are stranded in West Africa. The BBC is reporting that 200 Sri Lankans left their country and travelled through India and Ethiopia before a smuggler abandoned them in Togo instead of taking them on to Ghana and then Canada. Public Safety Minister Vic Toews says he’s aware of the reports but could not confirm them.

Canada Immigration: Authorities Work With Togo To Stop Potential Boatload Of Sri Lankan Tamils (Althia Raj, Huffington Post)
Canadian authorities have helped thwart the efforts of another group of Tamil refugees to get to Canada, The Huffington Post Canada has learned. Speaking on condition of anonymity, government sources confirmed that Canadian officials have worked very closely with the government of Togo, the small West African nation, to stop a potential boatload of Sri Lankans asylum seekers from arriving in Canada.

CFP: 2012 Centre for Refugee Studies Graduate Student Conference “Power, Representation, and Identity: Narratives by, about, and around refugees and forcibly displaced persons”, April 27-28, 2012, York University, Toronto (Refugee Research Network)
The Centre for Refugee Studies (CRS) Student Caucus is pleased to announce that the Annual Student Conference will take place on April 20th and 21st, 2012 at York University, Toronto, Canada. This event offers graduate and upper year undergraduate students from across disciplines, as well as practitioners, with a keen interest in migration and refugee issues the opportunity to present and discuss their research ideas with fellow students, academics, professionals, frontline practitioners, researchers, scholars and all those interested in forced migration issues.


Webinar: Professional Immigrant Networks: Connecting with immigrant talent (
This webinar will examine Professional Immigrant Networks as a source of immigrant talent that can help employers meet business and organizational needs. Participants will learn about these networks, where to find them and how to work with them in a mutually beneficial way.

Video: If I had million dollars (Workers’ Action Centre)
Stop the cuts to employment standards enforcement in Ontario. Stop Wage Theft.

Quebecor suspends worker in ‘racism’ flap (Winnipeg Free Press)
The Quebecor media organization has suspended an employee who alleged it treated ethnic minorities unfairly at one of its television networks. The organization issued a statement announcing a three-month suspension Tuesday for the senior union representative for workers at its flagship French-language network, TVA. It said Rejean Beaudet, the employee-union official, recently made unacceptable public comments during a spat between the network and a news anchor who is black.

Encouraging Continuous Improvement (Office of the Fairness Commissioner)
The Fairness Commissioner wants to make sure that regulatory bodies continue to improve the way they register people who apply for professional licences in Ontario. To do this, they assess the registration practices of each one. They praise successes and make practical proposals for change. Assessment began in summer 2011. As of January 30, 2012, the commissioner’s top concerns are:
the need for better information about what to do to get a licence (53 % of recommendations)
the use of clear criteria to decide whether applicants are qualified (13 % of recommendations)

Bridge training program for nurses opens local branch (Sanja Frkovic, Our Windsor)
The CARE Centre for Internationally Educated Nurses officially opened its Windsor branch on Friday, January 27, at its new location at the Women’s Enterprise Skills Training building. One of 12 bridge training programs for nurses in Ontario, CARE has been helping internationally trained nurses to become licensed to practice in Canada. In the past two years, the offices in Toronto, Hamilton, Brampton and London have helped 253 nurses become registered with 227 of those finding successful employment in Ontario.

Video Resumes Bring Verbal Communication to Forefront of Job Applications (Heather Williams, LEAP)
The standard paper resume is officially outdated. launched on Monday and allows job seekers to upload a video resume in addition to the written components such as those on existing job search sites. Verbal communication skills are now just as apparent as written communication skills with this job search website breakthrough.


Wednesday’s Headlines (Spacing Toronto)
A round up of mainstream media coverage including Labour Dispute, Transit and Other News.

Event: Toronto Residents’ Reference Panel on Household Income (MASSLBP)
On Tuesday, February 7th, Diaspora Dialogues, the University of Toronto’s Cities Centre and MASS LBP will release a new report based on the deliberations of forty-four randomly selected Toronto residents who spent several Saturdays this winter learning and thinking about how to overcome the economic divides that separate our city.

Fourth Wall: City Hall Scorecard (Dave Meslin)
As I wrote on January 24th, the recommendations from the Fourth Wall exhibit are already making waves at City Hall. With strong support from both City staff and City Councillors, individual items are being brought forward one by one. The ball is now rolling, and this blog post will serve as a ‘living document’, tracing the progress of all 36 proposals.

Sam Sullivan – What Am I Skating Towards? A New Wave of Urban Reform (Al Etmanski)
My study of the history of Canadian cities leads me to conclude that we are ready for a new wave of urban reform. Canada has had three waves of urban reform. It is possible to locate pivotal dates for each of them.

The city’s next talent incubator starts putting down its Regent Park roots (Scott Dagostino, Yonge Street)
This summer, CSI will open its third location in the now-under-construction Regent Park Arts and Cultural Centre at Dundas and Sackville, part of phase two of the decade-long Regent Park revitalization plan. And in doing so, it has had to rethink its way of doing things.


Social Entrepreneurs in Canada Survey (SiG @MaRS)
This survey was designed to learn more about the current needs of social entrepreneurs in Canada. The information you provide here is strictly confidential, will not be shared, and will be used for research purposes only. This survey will take 5-10 minutes to complete.

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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.

One Response to “Immigration & Diversity news headlines – February 1, 2012”

  1. andhrawishesh7 says:

    The mall was owned by liquor baron Gurpreet Chadha, a close aide of UP
    Chief Minister Mayawathi. Gurpreet Chadha, also known as Ponty Chadha,
    kept the cash bundles in an old big size wooden box.

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