Immigration & Diversity news headlines – March 1, 2012


February Newsletter (Maytree)
In this issue:
Democracy and Science, in the National Interest
Canadians Are Open to the World
Bill C-31: A Big New Refugee Bill but the Same Old Debate
Old Age Insecurity?
Can Austerity Create Prosperity and Address Inequality?
Giving Voice to the Importance of Diverse Leadership: Youth Advocate Danny Anckle
A Network You Want to Be Part of
McMillan Makes Professional Legal Advice Accessible for Nonprofits
Great Candidate, No Openings? No Problem!
Remembering Humanitarian Rabbi Gunther Plaut
News You Can Use

Immigration overhaul would let employers choose prospects (Joe Friesen, Globe and Mail)
The Conservative government is poised to overhaul the immigration system to give employers an important role in the selection of new Canadians. Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said he plans to build a faster, more flexible, just-in-time immigration regime. Hes also going to redesign the points system, on which immigrants are judged, to emphasize language ability and youth.

Immigration research project eyes new home (Louisa Taylor, Ottawa Citizen)
The federal government won’t be renewing funding to a national network of researchers, casting doubt on the future of a major source of data and information for immigration policy in Canada. While that has alarmed some of the re-searchers, the man in charge of the Metropolis Project says he’s optimistic part of it will find a new home at an Ottawa university. The Metropolis Project is a unique research body with a secretariat and five centres of excellence across the country. Academics collaborate with community agencies and feed their findings on immigration to both policy-makers and service providers on the ground. Started as a temporary project in 1996, it has been funded almost entirely by federal agencies led by Citizenship and Immigration Canada, with an agreement worth $565,000 annually set to expire in April.

A conversation about what makes Alberta so successful (The Zieglers Blog)
Today I want to share with you a conversation with Sorcha Thomas, Spokeswoman for Albertas Human Services. I asked her what is behind Albertas success, what makes the Province so successful and how immigrants can settle there.

Carleton Collaborates with Deloitte to Launch a Benchmark Study of Women’s Leadership (Marketwire)
Carleton University’s Centre for Women in Politics and Public Leadership, in collaboration with Deloitte, is launching a benchmark study of women’s leadership. Similar in style to a 2009 White House report in the United States, the study will present the current state of women’s leadership in key Canadian sectors, determine challenges and opportunities, and make recommendations about what key sectors and policy-makers can do to achieve a more gender-inclusive leadership.

Halton: 14% visible minority population city sees rise in hate crimes (David Lea,
Hate-related incidents are increasing in Halton, especially in Oakville. Halton police have told the police service board there were 51 hate-related incidents in the region in 2011, 19 of which fit the police definition of a hate crime. This is up from 41 hate-related incidents in 2010, police told the board last week.

Lou Moro’s journey from new immigrant to enemy alien (Mario Bartel – Burnaby NewsLeader)
Moro, who passed away in 2009 at the age of 91, was a beloved athletic trainer for the Vancouver Whitecaps, the 86ers, the Canadian national soccer team and countless kids who played minor soccer and lacrosse in Burnaby. When he wasnt making sausages at Burns Meat Packers and Windsor Meats, his round smiling face and thick, salving hands were a fixture on the sidelines and behind the benches. Everyone called him Uncle Lou. His work, most of it as a volunteer, was recognized with induction into the Canadian soccer, lacrosse and Burnaby sports halls of fame. Whats less known is the personal pain he endured as a young Italian immigrant trying to make his way in a new country at a time when anyone with a foreign accent and non-Anglo Saxon name was regarded with suspicion.

Immigration swells numbers (Nick Martin, Winnipeg Free Press)
A huge immigration wave has brought thousands of new children into Winnipeg schools and produced enrolment growth in the province’s public schools for the second straight year. The Department of Education’s enrolment report released this week reports net growth of 1,354 students in public schools — a growth of 0.8 per cent, after a net gain of 173 students last year ended 16 years of what appeared to be inexorably declining enrolment. The immigrant-driven growth is predominantly in urban centres, including Brandon, Portage la Prairie and Steinbach, while most rural divisions continue to get smaller.

The First Black Player’s Big Secret (Luke Fox, Sportsnet)
If you think this is a story about a black Canadian, since dubbed the Jackie Robinson of Ice Hockey and awarded the Order of Canada, enduring hateful epithets and a few hundred extra hacks, then you are only 10 per cent correct. For the most remarkable thing about Willie Eldon ORee is not that he made the cut in an all-white sport while he happened to be black. Its not even that he made the NHL when there were only six teams and roster spots were five times harder to come by. It is that he made the NHL, and then flourished as a professional hockey player deep into his 40s, as a man half-blind. We spoke at length with Mr. ORee from Buffalo, where he was continuing his new mission: encouraging boys and girls from diverse backgrounds to lace up skates and pick up the game of hockey.

Ministerial Conference on the Canadian Francophonie (MCCF)/Francophone Immigration: Essential for all Canadians! (Marketwire)
The provincial and territorial member governments of the Ministerial Conference on the Canadian Francophonie (MCCF) are continuing their catalyst role with regard to Francophone immigration in order to develop the Canadian Francophonie and Canadian society as a whole. The MCCF brought together representatives from the federal, provincial and territorial governments responsible for immigration for its third Working Session on Francophone Immigration to Canada and the sixth Metropolis National Pre-Conference on Francophone Immigration in Canada held yesterday and today, respectively, in Toronto

Human Rights Film Fest Takes Off (Kevin Scott, Torontoist)
The ninth annual Human Rights Watch Film Festivala showcase for movies that deal with social issuesopens tonight with Fernand Melgars Special Flight, a fly-on-the-wall documentary that looks at life within the confines of the Frambois detention centre in Geneva, where desperate men cling to the remote hope of being granted asylum prior to deportation from Switzerland. The film manages to capture a uniquely delicate balance between prisoner and captor. There are no good guys and bad guys herejust decent people trying to make the best of a bad situation.

The link between Canadas universities and low productivity (Gwyn Morgan, Troy Media)
The CCCs reports key theme is A more highly skilled workforce will produce value-added goods and services and new technologies that can maximize productivity and improve the quality of life for all Canadians. And given existing skills shortfalls, combined with the pending retirement of skilled workers, the mindset of Canadian business and government should be to view every person as an opportunity to contribute to the workforce. In that vein, improving immigrant integration services should be high priority. Many immigrants gain entry to Canada on the basis of needed skills yet languish in low skill jobs due to the lack of national standards for assessing educational qualifications, career counselling and mentorship.

Ten Black HIV/AIDS Advocates Who Are Making a Difference (
Notisha Massaquoi, Executive Director, Women’s Health in Women’s Hands, Toronto. When is a health center not just a health center? When it puts social justice at the center of wellness. Women’s Health in Women’s Hands (WHIWH), headed by author and social worker Notisha Massaquoi, is just such an organization. Dedicated to serving black women and women of color in the Toronto area — and home to the only support group for HIV-positive black women in Ontario — WHIWH doesn’t just provide primary care, mental health and HIV/AIDS services and health promotion activities. It’s been involved in numerous participatory research projects designed to gather scientific knowledge on the populations it serves, as well as facilitate meetings with policymakers, service providers and community members.

University of Calgary: Alberta competes in the search for global talent (Marketwire)
While rampant unemployment is impacting much of the Western world, many companies in western Canada are experiencing labour shortages. These skill shortages have resulted in companies seeking temporary and permanent workers from abroad. Alberta has always welcomed new immigrants to complement its small population so on March 2, 2012, the University of Calgary will be hosting a one-day conference and employability workshop aimed at international visa students and graduates.

Meet tomorrow’s leaders today: Our March 22 panel spotlights some of the city’s brightest new lights (Yonge Street)
Good leadership can be hard to find. Following our successful Density Done Right panel, the March 22 edition of the Yonge Street Speaker Series will introduce us to some of the city’s most dynamic new talent, who will help us explore the importance of Toronto’s emerging leadership in shaping community and making our city a great place in which to live and work. They’ll also talk about what young leaders need from the city to get their work done. We’re very pleased to be back at the ING Direct Café for this event.


Refugee bill widens safe-country net (Kristen Shane, Embassy)
A proposed refugee law introduced earlier this month widens the net further than previous legislation so more countries could be designated as “safe”meaning more asylum claims to Canada could be fast-tracked, with no access to appeals. While some analysts say they have no problems with the proposed new thresholds, others argue they are too broad and would capture countries such as Mexico, that shouldn’t even be up for review, as potentially “safe.”

Migration wave to Canada harms bilateral ties, says Foreign Ministry (
The current wave of migration from Hungary to Canada imposes a serious burden on excellent bilateral relations, the Hungarian Foreign Ministry told MTI on Wednesday. It is all the more regrettable that some Hungarians see emigration to Canada as a way of getting rich quickly and they try to use loopholes in Canadas immigration system by portraying the Hungarian situation in false colours, the ministry said.

Parkdale’s Roma community gather for candlelight vigil (Erin Hatfield, InsideToronto)
“Put your hand up if you have been a victim of violence,” asked Gina Csanyi-Robah from the Toronto Roma Community Centre. “Put your hand up if you feel you have been persecuted.” Hands from across the crowd gathered in front of Parkdale Collegiate Institute went up – hundreds of hands, both children and adults from Toronto’s Roma community.–parkdale-s-roma-community-gather-for-candlelight-vigil

Improving Health Outcomes for Government Assisted Refugees Final Report (Settlement AtWork)
In April 2011, Citizenship Immigration Canada, Ontario Region contracted PSTG Consulting to carry out a study to document the current delivery models of health services offered to Government-Assisted Refugees (GARs).

European refugees squeezed by new laws (Catherine Dauvergne, For Vancouver Sun; Postmedia News)
Last week’s new immigration omnibus bill takes aim at refugees from supposedly safe places, like Europe. It is ironic that refugees from Europe are now the most suspect. The current legal definition of a refugee was created in the aftermath of the Second World War. Until the mid-1960s, in fact, only Europeans could be refugees. There are three things wrong with targeting refugees from Europe. Each one of them is complicated, so they make bad sound-bite politics. The first is that despite the existence of the European Union, Europe remains a variety of different nations, and conditions in those nations vary enormously.


Update on Social Assistance Review (Steve Barnes, Wellesley Institute)
In the few weeks since the Commission for the Review of Social Assistance in Ontario released its discussion paper, we at the Wellesley Institute have been busy analyzing and preparing our response. Were working with our partners to provide advice to the Commission about promising suggestions, and where they need to rethink their approach to ensure that the reformed system can better enhance peoples opportunities for good health and reduce systemic health inequities.

“Nothing For A Rainy Day” 3 (CBC Metro Morning)
This morning, on our series, “Nothing for a Rainy Day”, guest host Kevin Sylvester spoke about the government’s suggestions about raising the age for receiving old age security, with the CBC’s Mary Wiens.


The Social Assistance Review: It Doesnt End with Drummond (ISAC)
As one among many groups working to contribute to the Social Assistance Review process ongoing since early last year, we were dismayed to see the Drummond Commission weigh in so significantly on recommendations around social assistance. One of the most troubling of Drummonds recommendations is to limit annual spending growth in Ontario Works and the ODSP to 0.5% for the next six years. If adopted by government, this low rate of growth will not only cause further despair for people whose incomes have been stalled far below the poverty line since 1998, it will indefensibly delay making the degree and range of investments in improving the social assistance system that we are all hoping will come out of the Social Assistance Review. But just because Drummond says so, doesnt make it true. The Doomsday scenario is not upon us yet.


Is There Method to the Madness? Examining How Racioethnic Matching Influences Retail Store Productivity (Temple University, Rutgers University and Davidson College)
This article considers the efficacy of matching the racioethnicity of employees and the customer base as a human resource strategy within service organizations. Despite being advocated widely, the literature on its effectiveness is scant and riddled with conflicting findings. We revisit the theoretical rationale underlying this strategy, formulate new theory, and introduce the demographic representativeness construct (i.e., the congruence between employee and customer base profiles) to the organizational literature to test our hypotheses. Using multisource data pertaining to 739 stores of a U.S. retailer, the results indicate a positive effect of racioethnic representativeness on productivity, which is accounted for by improved customer satisfaction. Moreover, additional analyses showed this indirect relationship to be more pronounced in stores with larger minority customer bases.

Why the value of diversity in the workplace adds up to nearly six figures (Morgan Campbell, Toronto Star)
Retailers can boost yearly earnings by as much as $100,000 by employing a racially diverse roster that mirrors their customer base, a new study suggests. But one author says that soaring profits involves more than simply playing ethnic mix-and-match. The study, co-authored by professors from Temple University, Rutgers University and Davidson College, studied 739 outlets of the U.S. department store J.C. Penney. According to the study, stores where the pool of employees mirrored the ethnic makeup of the communities they served earned an average of $94,000 more per year than stores in which staff wasnt as representative of the wider community.–why-the-value-of-diversity-in-the-workplace-adds-up-to-nearly-six-figures?bn=1

Hire Diversity, Make More Money (Retailers Learn From Profs) (Susan Klopfer, The Diversity Briefings eNewsletter)
A new business marketing study gives retailers a strong reason to hire with diversity in mind. Yearly earnings are boosted by as much as $100,000 when they employ people who look like their customers, a new study suggests. But this still involves more than simply playing ethnic mix-and-match, says one professor.

Permanently Temporary? Agricultural Migrant Workers and Their Integration in Canada (Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers)
According to a new study published by the Institute for Research on Public Policy (IRPP), agricultural labour migrants need a better support system while in Canada, including access to benefits and better protection of their rights. This study identifies major barriers to health care and social services among other hardships that migrant workers are facing in Canada.


Wednesday’s Headlines (Spacing Toronto)
A daily round up of mainstream media news on City Hall, Transit and Other News.

Thursday’s Headlines (Spacing Toronto)
A daily round up of mainstream media news on City Hall, Transit and Other News.

“Not On Top Of The List” (CBC Metro Morning)
Guest host Kevin Sylvester spoke about the TTC fare system with local transit activist Steve Munro.

The Atlantic explores what Toronto’s Spacing magazine is doing right (Yonge Street)
The Atlantic interviews Matthew Blackett, the co-founder, publisher and creative director of Toronto city-focused publication, Spacing. Devoted to “understudying the urban landscape,” Spacing has been growing steadilyboth in circulation and in influencefor over 10 year.


Engage! March 2012 (Tamarack Institute)
This issue explores the idea of community innovation and why now is the right time for communities to strengthen this capacity. Don Lenihan shares highlights from his new book, Rescuing Policy which suggests that, as public policy issues become more complex, government’s decision-making process must also evolve. A new Casebook on Evaluation for Learning profiles six case studies – including one from VC Saint John – that demonstrate how evaluation thinking and practice can be used to strengthen programs. A new report documenting the cost of poverty in Alberta and the growing reality of Toronto’s working poor are also both highlighted. Finally we profile the last in a set of resources recently developed by the White House Council on Community Solutions: a series of case studies on effective collaboration.


B.C. students hosting benefit concert to fight human trafficking (Mike Raptis, The Province)
A trio of students at West Vancouvers Mulgrave School are putting up the Not For Sale sign when it comes to human trafficking in their own backyard. Grade 11 students Natasha Virani, Melissa Godin and Hannah Radford along with the rest of Mulgraves Student Action Council will be hosting a benefit concert March 7 to raise money and awareness for Not For Sale, a California-based non-profit organization.

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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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Your morning #Immigration & #Diversity news headlines – February 28, 2012 #inclusion #cdnimm RT @farrah_khan: My dream is fulfilled,...