Immigration & Diversity news headlines – March 26, 2012

IMMIGRATION / SETTLEMENT / DIVERSITY

February Newsletter (Cities of Migration)
In this issue:
15 Good Ideas: Diversity and Inclusion in Cities
Demetrios Papademetriou: Rethinking National Identity in the Age of Migration
Super-diversity and the City
A Charter of Rights for Urban Citizens
Tenerife: Together in the Same Direction
FutureChallenges: The New City
Business Law for Immigrant Entrepreneurs
Living Together in Waltham Forest (London) and Antwerp
Good Ideas in the News
http://www.industrymailout.com/Industry/View.aspx?id=352101

National consultations on parent and grandparent immigration launched by Minister Kenney (CIC)
National consultations on the redesign of Canadas parent and grandparent (PGP) immigration program were launched today by Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney. Faced with backlogs and growing wait times, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is planning to revamp its PGP immigration program. Online consultations are now open for public comment on CICs website and Minister Kenney will host a series of multicity in-person consultations with stakeholders.
http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/media/releases/2012/2012-03-23.asp

Book Review: Reviving the dream of diversity (Will Kymlicka, Globe and Mail)
The past 10 years have not been kind to defenders of multiculturalism. Around the world, we hear calls that multiculturalism has failed. It may once have been a laudable dream, but experience has proved it to be a multicultural tragedy, and only people blinded by political correctness cling to its defence. Karl Meyer and Shareen Brysac want to resuscitate the dream, or at least they want to challenge the pessimism that has accompanied recent debates around ethnic diversity. But rather than jumping directly into the heated arguments for and against multiculturalism, they set out on the road to find places where diversity succeeds. They looked to find the unsung exceptions where ethnic diversity might be expected to be a source of strife and conflict, but where, in fact, it is accepted and even celebrated.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/arts/books/pax-ethnica-by-karl-e-meyer-and-shareen-blair-brysac/article2379211/

Clark shuffles cabinet (Gordon Hoekstra, Vancouver Sun)
B.C. Premier Christy Clark has named Richmond Steveston MLA John Yap to replace Harry Bloy as minister of state for multiculturalism. Yap said his focus in his new role will be largely tied to the Liberals’ Jobs Plan, specifically economic immigration. Yap, who recently chaired a Clark-created task force to review how skilled immigrants and foreign investors come to B.C. and Canada, said that role helped him understand the role of multiculturalism in the B.C. economy and its communities.
http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Clark+shuffles+cabinet/6358757/story.html

Ontario school children pitch in to help Afghan teenager Roya Shams go to school in Canada (Paul Watson, Toronto Star)
More than two months after Roya arrived tired and frightened from Kandahar, donors are still sending money to help her beat overwhelming odds. Many have written to say how Royas courage inspired them to stand with her. They are part of the 17-year-old Kandaharis growing, extended Canadian family. Each one wants to give strength to a girl far from home, only weeks, and many tearful phone calls, removed from a war that killed her father last summer.
http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/1151772–school-children-from-fitzroy-harbour-ont-pitch-in-to-help-afghan-teenager-roya-shams-go-to-school-in-canada

Roya Shams: Heartwarming letters from fellow newcomers (Toronto Star)
Students in an ESL program at Mohawk College wrote these letters to Roya Shams after reading her account of facing a new life in Canada.
http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/1151775–roya-shams-heartwarming-letters-from-fellow-newcomers

Celebrating cultural diversity (Heather Polischuk, Leader-Post)
When it began 13 years ago, Spring Free From Racism attracted a modest crowd of 150. Spring forward to 2011 and 5,000 were in attendance. The 2012 event was looking to be just as big with an estimated 2,000 people already at the Italian Club by opening ceremonies early Sunday afternoon, with many more expected throughout the afternoon and into the early evening when the annual one-day event was to wrap up. Committee co-chair Barb Dedi was pleased with the early turnout, especially given the ongoing need for cultural awareness in Regina. It was that need that first led to the creation of the event.
http://www.leaderpost.com/life/Celebrating+cultural+diversity/6357835/story.html

Racial hate alive in Canada, summit told (Carol Sanders, Winnipeg Free Press)
While Muslims and Jews gathered in Winnipeg on the weekend to unite against hate, neo-Nazis and skinheads in other Canadian cities rallied in the streets to promote it. Public demonstrations in London, Ont., and Edmonton show hate exists in Canada, a hate-crime researcher told 100 Muslims and Jews in Winnipeg Sunday. “Demonstrations like that haven’t been seen in Canada since the 1930s by a number of fascist and anti-Semitic organizations,” said Helmut-Harry Loewen, a University of Winnipeg sociology professor. And they didn’t just come out of nowhere, he told the crowd at the event organized by the Islamic Social Services Association. “The anger and fear which propels them… is embedded in broader society,” Loewen warned.
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/racial-hate-alive-in-canada-summit-told-144186515.html

White-pride rally fizzles (Patrick Maloney, London Free Press)
Anti-bigotry activists clashed with white-pride rally-goers during weekend protests in both London and Edmonton. In London, bandana-wearing anti-racists caused some confusion for at least a few people who were visible minorities, scurrying from their bus stop outside city hall to avoid the marchers. Were an anti-racism group, one marcher shouted at the departing trio.
http://www.lfpress.com/news/london/2012/03/25/19547216.html

Racism reality (Jodi Lundmark, tbnewswatch.com)
There is a lot of work left to be done to combat racism in Canada. Thats the message former Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario James Bartleman told a crowd of more than 400 people at Diversity Thunder Bays sixth annual celebration breakfast for the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination at the Valhalla Inn Friday.
http://www.tbnewswatch.com/entertainment/198453/Racism-reality

Supremacist stabbing not hate crime, say police (CBC)
RCMP are concerned a gang war could be sparked by allegations a white supremacist was killed because of his association with a group called Blood and Honour. A Surrey, B.C., man, who died March 17 in what police said appeared to be an attempted break and enter was a member of the group, one of his associates says.
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/story/2012/03/25/bc-killing-not-hate-crime.html

Toronto: Comedy Showcase fights racism through laughter (The Canadian)
Racial stereotypes, ethnic clichés and culture differences will be at the forefront on April 14 as the Markham Theatre For Performing Arts hosts one of Canadas most entertaining multicultural comedic showcases, The Most RACES Show on Earth! (MRSOE!). MRSOE! is stand-up comedy show that examines racial and ethnic differences through the lens of laughter. After selling out numerous venues in Canada and the U.S., Markham native and MRSOE! founder, Neil Bansil, will bring his show north of Steeles Ave. for first time.
http://www.agoracosmopolitan.com/news/our_canadian_cities/2012/03/26/3570.html

A Country of Many Colours (Senator Don Meredith)
Let me talk to you a little bit about my journey as a person of colour in Canada. As an immigrant to this country I have experienced firsthand the struggles of integrating into Canadian society as a visible minority, but I have also experienced the successes that come with embracing everything this country has to offer.
http://donmeredith.sencanada.ca/en/p102736/

No joke – four Canadians claim Olympic spots (Gary Kingston, Vancouver Sun)
A Russian, a Cuban and an American walk into an arena in Kissimmee, Fla., right next door to Disney World, and . . . Sounds like the opening line to a joke, doesnt it? Not this time. In this case, were talking amateur sport freestyle wrestling, to be specific. And three guys who were born elsewhere but now proudly wave the Canadian maple leaf qualified Sunday for the London Olympics, hoping they might be this generations Daniel Igali.
http://www.vancouversun.com/sports/joke+four+Canadians+claim+Olympic+spots/6357620/story.html

Saskatoon Hindus celebrate temple expansion (Jeremy Warren, The StarPhoenix)
Raj Dhir is not surprised the city’s Hindu temple is running out of room for the growing number of Indian immigrants coming to Saskatoon. “I used to know everybody here who came from my part of the world, but not anymore” said Dhir, president of the Hindu Society of Saskatchewan. “Every Sunday when we’re doing prayers I ask newcomers to identify themselves. Every Sunday new people come forward.” Saskatoon Hindus celebrated a planned temple expansion on Sunday with an event that featured ceremonial chanting of ancient Vedic scriptures in Sanskrit and a sod turning on the expansion site that had been sanctified with sacred water poured from traditional Indian urns.
http://www.thestarphoenix.com/life/Saskatoon+Hindus+celebrate+temple+expansion/6357898/story.html

Unique Local Research On Immigrant Entrepreneurs To Be Released (Exchange Magazine)
Did you know that immigrants face most of the same barriers to starting a business as the Canadian-born population, and that only a handful of supports focus on immigrant entrepreneurs specifically in all of Ontario? The results of a year-long study of immigrant entrepreneurship in Waterloo Region and Guelph and four other communities in southwestern Ontario will be released on March 23rd, 11.30am at Kitchener City Hall Rotunda. This event will feature a short video about the project as well as first-hand accounts by immigrant entrepreneurs of their experiences starting and running a business in this community.
http://www.exchangemagazine.com/morningpost/2012/week12/Friday/12032307.htm

Minorities in Ontario praise govts efforts in promoting diversity (Guyana Times International)
Guyanese and other minorities in Ontario have showered praises on the Government of Ontario for promoting diversity in the province. Some 100,000 Guyanese are settled in the province. Ontario has been named as Canadas best diversity employer for the fifth consecutive year. It is not known how many Guyanese are employed in government posts in Ontario, but it is believed that the government (of the province) has employed more Guyanese and immigrant groups than any other province in the country. A publication titled Canadas Top 100 Employers, published by Mediacorp, reviews workplace policies and practices of employers across the country to determine the Best Diversity Employers. This years title goes to the Ontario Government, said the publication.
http://www.guyanatimesinternational.com/?p=14921

Vaughan audience hears about keys to social problems (Adam Martin-Robbins, YorkRegion.com)
Others pointed out that new immigrants settling in Vaughan face similar challenges. Getting a job that is the first thing they (new immigrants) want to do, said Srinivasan Venkatesh. If every business in the city of Vaughan hires one immigrant who has no Canadian experience for one year, provide that Canadian experience either on their own or through subsidized funding from the city, that will solve a lot of problems. The lack of affordable housing in Vaughan was another key concern raised by several participants.
http://www.yorkregion.com/news/article/1323203–vaughan-audience-hears-about-keys-to-social-problems

First majority budget will reveal Harper unleashed (Bill Curry, Globe and Mail)
But some of the most dramatic changes will come in the area of immigration, where minister Jason Kenney has outlined major policy reforms. Skills shortages in natural-resources projects will increasingly be met through immigration. Businesses will receive new powers to cherry pick immigrants from waiting lists. It will be a major change for those who see Canada as a place where immigrants traditionally start at the bottom and work their way up. This notion that we should be bringing poor and uneducated people to the country as part of our economic immigration program, I mean, it may, in some respect, be a romantic myth, but I just dont think its relevant to todays economy, todays world, Mr. Kenney recently told CBC Radio. The government is hoping all of this policy will overshadow another key part of the 2012 budget: cuts.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/first-majority-budget-will-reveal-harper-unleashed/article2380035

Canadian budget to take long view as surplus nears (Pakistan Daily Times)
With the shrinking deficits fairly assured, attention is turning to what Prime Minister Stephen Harper has called major transformations in his agenda. Flaherty said on Thursday the major theme of the budget is not restraint but measures with a view to 2020 and beyond. These transformations are expected to include: raising the eligibility age for Old Age Security pensions, overhauling immigration policy to match skilled newcomers with employer needs, revamping the business research and development program to boost productivity and innovation, and shortening the process for regulatory approval of natural resources projects.
http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2012%5C03%5C24%5Cstory_24-3-2012_pg5_34

As Charter of Rights turns 30, Canadians argue over its value (Alan Shanoff, Qmi Agency)
The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, born in 1982, celebrates its 30th birthday April 17. Will you be celebrating or cursing?
http://www.lfpress.com/comment/2012/03/23/19541796.html

Immigration strategy outlines ambitious goals (Steve Pettibone, The Recorder And Times)
Ali Rehman’s family came to Canada from Pakistan in 2001, settling in Kingston. After opening a total of seven Subway restaurant franchises over a period of several years, they came to Brockville and opened the Holiday Inn Express & Suites on Kent Boulevard. By 2014, the family plans on opening a new Holiday Express in Kemptville, as well as a convention centre adjacent to the Brockville location. In total, Rehman says, the family will have invested $22 million into Leeds and Grenville by the time all the projects are up and running.
http://www.recorder.ca/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=3513141

DBN Supplier Diversity Conference took place in Toronto (KJ Mullins, Digital Journal)
Stephen Frost, Head of Diversity and Inclusion for the London Olympic Games, was in Toronto yesterday to speak at the DBN Supplier Diversity Conference. Frost made time for the event even with the clock ticking down at 126 days because diversity in business is key for the global workplace. Frost said that the Olympics are a labour of love. As he sees his city of London cleaned up for the games it’s the future that will be the legacy of his work. “The question is what will be the legacy. Will London have benefited by the games and will diversity advancements continue?,” Frost said during his speech Friday.
http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/321741

Wife Beating Book Upsets Canada Muslims (OnIslam)
A book advising Muslim men to beat their wives to control them is sparking outrage among the Muslim minority in Canada. “It is not like that in our community, Farzana Baig, a wife of a mosque imam, told the Sun News on Sunday, March 25. This is upsetting. A wrong thing against our community.
http://www.onislam.net/english/news/americas/456362-wife-beating-book-outrages-canada-muslims.html

Reginan wins immigration battle (Jonathan hamelin, Leader-Post)
After a month of appealing a Canadian immigration mix-up, one Regina resident will now have her mothers support as her first child is born and for a long time after. Liza Parekh and her husband are originally from India, but have lived in Regina since 2010. With the couple expecting its first baby in April, and Parekh battling gestational diabetes, she wanted her mother by her side
http://www.leaderpost.com/Reginan+wins+immigration+battle/6339053/story.html

More than half of Canadians dont trust Muslims. Only HALF? (Bare Naked Islam)
ACS (who conducted the poll) executive director Jack Jedwab described the results as a disturbing sign that racism not only remains a problem in the country but that many Canadians feel comfortable holding transparently discriminatory views, then saying things like: If we feel this way about you, its your fault. This is also more evidence that the Internet has become the major vehicle for spreading hatred and prejudice, said Ayman Al-Yassini, executive director of the Canadian Race Relations Foundation.
http://barenakedislam.com/2012/03/23/more-than-half-of-canadians-dont-trust-muslims-only-half/

Taking Root exhibit outlines history of Chinese immigration to province (Tara Bradbury, The Telegram)
Newfoundlanders may well understand what its like to be taunted in their own country. Were used to being the butt of jokes, known to stick together and have been made fun of for everything from the way we talk to the food we eat. We also know what it means to be pushed out of our hometown when the economy sinks, turning to jobs in Alberta or Ontario to provide for our families. We have much in common with the Chinese immigrants who came to Newfoundland in the first half of the 20th century and those here today.
http://www.thetelegram.com/Arts%20-%20Life/2012-03-23/article-2937594/Taking-Root-exhibit-outlines-history-of-Chinese-immigration-to-province/1

Newcomers build their own success (Dave Hall, The Windsor Star)
Immigrants to Canada are often pushed into becoming entrepreneurs because they can’t find employment in traditional ways or because their credentials aren’t recognized quickly enough before they have to start making a living to support a family. But for others, such as Indrajit Sinha and Kurosh Taromi, they were pulled into establishing their own businesses because they have a passion for what they do and were able to identify a niche that was also lucrative.
http://www.windsorstar.com/news/Newcomers+build+their+success/6353316/story.html

Immigration, generation or what? Some exploratory research on value diversity, social cohesion and political support in Canada (PDF) (Mebs Kanji, IInternational Journal of Sociology and Anthropology)
Do shifting immigration patterns and increased ethnic diversity pose negative consequences for social solidarity and democratic governance in Canadian society? Studies on this subject often implicate the influx of different value systems as potentially upsetting the efficiencies of social and political integration. But very few studies have actually attempted to investigate the value differences between immigrants and native born Canadians. Also, findings from a related line of analysis suggest that shifting immigration patterns and increasing ethnic diversity may not be the only societal transformations to present future challenges for value compatibility within Canadian society. Changing formative and socialization experiences of younger generations may also be contributing to greater value pluralization, and feeding a new generational value divide. Multiple new value divides may now be adding to the overall degree of value diversity that already exists between different socio-cultural groups within the Canadian society. And each of these values divides, new or old, either independently or in some combined fashion, might contribute to making us feel less connected as a society and detract from political support. In this preliminary investigation, data obtained from the 1990 and 2000 Canadian World Values Surveys were employed to probe such broader possibilities. Among other things, the evidence suggests that the generational value divide has a more consistent significant negative effect on various indicators of community connectedness than the native born Canadian/immigrant from non-traditional source countries value divide. In fact, the findings of this investigation indicate that the generational value divide has an even more relevant influence on such outcomes than the French/English value divide, which is striking given the historical significance of this cleavage in Canadian society and politics. Also, the data suggest that the overall degree of value diversity within a community is an important determinant of support for its political authorities, more so than other relevant factors such as democratic and financial satisfaction, public cynicism and even media exposure.
http://www.academicjournals.org/ijsa/PDF/pdf2012/Mar/Kanji.pdf

Program allows money transfers by phone (Don Cayo, Vancouver Sun)
Cash transfers are just as easy for Vince Vela of Burnaby, who is supporting his Philippine-born wife while she waits – five years, so far – for the paper-work that will get her into Canada. Ditto for many more British Columbians with family ties to the Philippines – Vancity won’t say precisely how many – who are taking advantage of a new pilot project to transfer money quickly and cheaply by telephone. In a world where international money transfers to less-developed countries have long been anything but fast or cheap, and where remittances sent from richer to poorer countries are estimated to be in the ballpark of $250 billion a year, the Van-city pilot program has potential significance far beyond mere convenience and modest savings for individual customers like Sayo and Vela.
http://www.vancouversun.com/business/Program+allows+money+transfers+phone/6354161/story.html

Canada’s anti-Asian immigration policy revisited in SFU Librarys new Komagata Maru website (Tracy Bains, Vancouver Observer)
Official court transcripts appear side-by-side with notes from community meetings, private correspondence and firsthand accounts like Bhai Arjan Singh Chands diary, which covers the Komagata Maru Shore Committee of local South Asians that ultimately raised $25,000 to keep the ship in the harbour. To ensure maximum accessibility, the site is available in four languages: English, French, Punjabi and Hindi. Likewise, lesson plans prepared by retired SFU education professor Roland Case of the Critical Thinking Consortium ensure that elementary and secondary school children are also educated on the lessons afforded by the Komagata Maru.
http://www.vancouverobserver.com/Education/2012/03/26/sfu-library%E2%80%99s-new-website-documents-komagata-maru

REFUGEES

Impact of Academic Research on Policy (Forced Migration Current Awareness)
Do policymakers pay attention to academic research findings? A recent opinion piece in Embassy Magazine suggests otherwise, at least in the Canadian context: “Canadian policy-making on refugee issues is ignoring the evidence of leading researchers in the field. Empirical research that would improve refugee legislation and the practices of our refugee determination system is being overlooked to the detriment of refugees and the Canadian public.”
http://fm-cab.blogspot.ca/2012/03/impact-of-academic-research-on-policy.html

Habitat for Humanity welcomes new family to Regina (Jonathan hamelin, Leader-Post)
Before coming to Canada in 2007, a refugee camp in Burma was Ju Htoos home for 15 years. On Mar. 22, she and her family were given the keys to their new home in Regina. Ju, along with her husband Kya and sons Blablu, 10, and Adam, 4, are now the owners of a home built by a Habitat for Humanity volunteer workforce in Regina. Im so happy. I want to say, Thanks a lot for the support and thanks for giving our family the chance to start a new life, Htoo said. This house is going to give us a better future to our children. Theyre going to get a good education for their life. They are very excited.
http://www.leaderpost.com/Habitat+Humanity+welcomes+family+Regina/6351758/story.html

Funding pulled for local housing program for newcomers (Julia Parrish, CTV)
In one week, a local housing and support facility for newcomers to the Edmonton area will become a rental building, after the federal government pulled funding for the program. As of April 1, Trinity Manor in central Edmonton will become a rental building, after Citizenship and Immigration Canada ended its funding.
http://edmonton.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20120325/EDM_trinitymanor_120325/20120325/?hub=EdmontonHome

Refugee program to close its doors (Lewis Kelley, Edmonton Journal)
Tears flowed Saturday as past and present clients of an program that provided homes and services for refugees gathered for a send-off ceremony after the federal government cut its funding. On April 1, the Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers’ refugee housing program at Trinity Manor, 10733101 St., will close its doors after eight years. While Trinity Manor will continue to provide affordable housing, it will be without the special services that were available on its premises. The federal department of Citizenship and Immigration decided in February not to renew funding, leaving the centre short $124,000.
http://www.edmontonjournal.com/life/Refugee+program+close+doors/6356071/story.html

PM to announce new anti-human smuggling efforts (Jessica Murphy, QMI Agency)
More than two years ago, the MV Sun Sea sailed from shores of Thailand carrying almost 500 Tamil migrants. The rickety cargo vessel landed off the B.C. coast in August 2010 — and led to Canada ramping up joint RCMP and Thai police efforts to fight human smuggling. On Saturday, Prime Minister Stephen Harper met with Thai and Canadian authorities here and announced $12 million in new funding to combat illegal immigration.
http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/Politics/2012/03/23/19542956.html

Turkish couple face eviction despite illness (Tom Godfrey, Toronto Sun)
They arrived here in 2005 and filed refugee claims that were refused along with subsequent appeals. Their children were sponsored by spouses. The couple had to report to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) on Tuesday to make removal arrangements. CBSA officer Daniel Park in a Direction to Report document told the couple a warrant can be issued for their arrest if they fail to show up for deportation. But, Dr. Rauf Sirman, a staff psychiatrist at Humber River Regional Hospital, in Toronto, told CBSA officials in a March 19 note that Cocelli suffers from a severe form of anxiety and panic disorder that causes her to experience pseudo-seizures when under acute emotional stress.
http://www.torontosun.com/2012/03/24/turkish-couple-face-eviction-despite-illness

April 4th: Refugee Rights Day (FCJ Refugee Centre)
Refugee Rights Day is celebrated each April 4th to bring attention to the advances made in the protection of refugee rights in Canada as a result of the Supreme Court Singh decision in 1985. The Singh decision is a landmark decision for Canadas refugee determination system as it ultimately led to the creation of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB) in 1989. The IRB is an independent tribunal established by the Parliament of Canada. Its mission is to resolve immigration and refugee cases efficiently, fairly and in accordance with the law.
http://www.fcjrefugeecentre.org/?p=2495

POVERTY / HEALTH / HOMELESSNESS / SOCIAL INCLUSION

Vancouver to have a rent bank to help prevent evictions (PovNet)
A rent bank is set to open in Vancouver that aims to help prevent homelessness by providing small loans to people to help them get or keep their housing. Similar programs are already in place in Toronto, Surrey, Prince George and the Fraser Valley. There seems to be a few stipulations to receiving a loan including proving financial need, demonstrating the ability to repay the loan over a two-years and taking a financial literacy course.
http://www.povnet.org/node/4886

Urban poor flock to ‘fringe banks’ (Mary Agnes Welch, Winnipeg Free Press)
Bank fees, the niggling ones that creep in at the end of the month, are what sent James Jackson to a Money Mart. Jackson used to have a bank account. “I’ve tried all the banks and they’re all the same,” he said. He gave up in frustration after finding his meagre balance eaten away by unexpected fees. “Banks charge extra. They always take stuff off every month, $20 for an overcharge, $20 for this, $20 for that,” he said last week as he stepped out of the Money Mart, a “fringe bank” in Winnipeg’s hard scrabble North End. “I’d rather lose a few bucks now than $20 later.”
http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/Urban+poor+flock+fringe+banks/6356052/story.html

Budget dilemma: How do we spread the pain of retrenchment fairly? (Carol Goar, Toronto Star)
We are ready as well ever be for this weeks double dose of fiscal discipline. Stephen Harper, Dalton McGuinty, their finance ministers and advisers have been drumming the message into our heads for months that we must tighten our belts, lower our expectations of government and treat austerity as the new normal for the next few years. We dont know exactly where the axe will fall and probably still wont after provincial Finance Minister Dwight Duncan releases his budget on Tuesday and his federal counterpart, Jim Flaherty, presents his financial plan on Thursday.
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/article/1151338–budget-dilemma-how-do-we-spread-the-pain-of-retrenchment-fairly

EMPLOYMENT & WORKERS

Introducing Coaching to Career: A Bridging Program to Service the Ontario ICT Sector (Integration-Net)
Coaching to Career is uniquely designed to match Internationally Educated Professionals (IEPs) with a senior ICT (Information and Communications Technology) industry executive in a coaching relationship for the ultimate outcome – attaining employment that integrates previous work experience. Coaching to Career is delivered in partnership with JVS Toronto and One Million Acts of Innovation. It is funded by the Government of Ontario and the Government of Canada.
http://integration-net.ca:81/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=112&Itemid=1&lang=en

Regina to host national apprenticeship conference (Leader-Post)
Since the CAF began hosting the biennial conference in 2002, this is the first time the national conference will be held in Saskatchewan. He added that with its theme of “Apprenticeship: Strategies for Success – Diversity, Innovation, Engagement” it seems appropriate the 2012 conference is being held in the Land of Living Skies. With our economy currently one of the strongest in Canada, Saskatchewan is seen as a growth leader. Kicking off the conference will be The Honourable Rob Norris, minister responsible for the SATCC, John Schubert, chair of the Canadian Construction Association, and Ken Georgetti, president of the Canadian Labour Congress. On the second and third day, the conference’s two keynote speakers will take the stage. They are Dr. Linda Duxbury, one of Canada’s foremost authorities on work-life balance, and Dr. Rick Miner, president of a management consulting firm that focuses on labour force demand, jobs of the future, human resource management and post-secondary education.
http://www.leaderpost.com/Regina+host+national+apprenticeship+conference/6352742/story.html

Recognizing the role of migrant workers on Ontario farms (Kerry Preibisch and Josh Gilbert, Guelph Mercury)
Do good things grow in Ontario? Considering this question as it pertains to labour practices in agriculture will be the theme of Migrant Farm Worker Awareness Week being held at the University of Guelph from March 26 to 30. Organized by students in their final year of sociology and international development, the week aims to increase awareness among the university and broader community of the men and women who grow and harvest our food, as well as their working and living conditions.
http://www.guelphmercury.com/opinion/columns/article/691487–recognizing-the-role-of-migrant-workers-on-ontario-farms

Province amping up labour laws to protect foreign workers (Renato Gandia/QMI AGENCY)
The province is beefing up labour rules to aid successful prosecution of unscrupulous recruiters who victimize temporary foreign workers and their families. MLA Manmeet Bhullar, minister of Service Alberta, announced the changes on March 15. They will take effect Sept. 1
http://www.vermilionstandard.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=3507134

Inside the working conditions of migrant workers: Journal seven and epilogue (rabble)
In light of the recent tragic incident involving the death of 10 migrant workers in Southern Ontario, I felt it was finally time to take the wraps off of a journal I kept during a two-week trip in early 2004 to investigate the conditions of undocumented Chinese migrant farm workers. I hope this can help shed light on the kinds of conditions faced every day by the people who tend, pick and process the food we eat. This is the seventh in a series.
http://rabble.ca/news/2012/03/inside-working-conditions-migrant-workers-journal-seven-and-epilogue

CITY OF TORONTO / CITIES / CIVIC ENGAGEMENT

Monday’s Headlines (Spacing Toronto)
A daily round up of mainstream media news on City Hall, Transit and Other News.
http://spacingtoronto.ca/2012/03/26/mondays-headlines-229/

The Sheppard LRT Report (Part III) (Steve Munro)
Many background presentations informed the Expert Panels review of options for the Sheppard corridor. This article is the first of two summarizing and commenting on this information.
http://stevemunro.ca/?p=6128

HUMAN TRAFFICKING / MODERN-DAY SLAVERY

Human Trafficking in Calgary: Informing a Localized Response Full Report (ACT Alberta)
No one has ever been convicted for humantrafficking in Alberta, yet nearly half of law enforcement, government, and social agencies surveyed in Calgary have come into contact with a victim of human trafficking. This surprising finding is revealed in Human Trafficking in Calgary: Informing a Localized response, a report released by the Action Coalition on human Trafficking (ACT) and Mount Royal Universitys Centre for Criminology and Justice Research. The research is unprecedented in Canada, as it represents the first attempt to document how a major Canadian city is addressing the needs of trafficked persons.
http://www.actalberta.org/news/human-trafficking-in-calgary-informing-a-localized-response-full-report/

Calgary not immune to human trafficking, finds report (CBC)
Human trafficking is often associated with the sex trade in foreign countries. New research has uncovered the extent of trafficking in our own city, but also suggests what can be done about it. “I think it’s a large issue,” said Susan Brandt, director of Street Level Consulting a Christian ministry training people to help the homeless and needy. “From what I hear, it’s becoming more lucrative now then even the drug or gun trade.”
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/story/2012/03/23/calgary-human-trafficking-report.html

Human trafficking in Calgary a bigger problem than originally thought (Jason Van Rassel, Calgary Herald)
The problem of human trafficking in Calgary is larger than local organizations first believed, partially because they definition they were using was so narrow. The Criminal Code charge of human trafficking has rarely been laid and there are no known convictions in Alberta, yet half of the agencies surveyed in a study released Friday said they have come into contact with victims.
http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/energy-resources/Human+trafficking+Calgary+bigger+problem+than+originally+thought/6350996/story.html

Event March 30-31, London: One Voice One Hope (Men Against Sexual Trafficking)
Human trafficking seminar, professional development day, awareness day, includes MP Joy Smith.
http://www.mast-canada.com/OVOH.aspx

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marco

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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