Immigration & Diversity news headlines – April 19, 2012

IMMIGRATION / SETTLEMENT / DIVERSITY

Is the federal immigration system a failure? (John Geddes, Maclean’s)
Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney sees deep ?aws in Canadas immigration system. For too long, he argues, the system has been drawing ambitious newcomers who arrive here ready to work only to find their qualifications arent recognized, their experience isnt valued, or their skills arent in demand. Weve got to stop this practice, he said in a major speech in Toronto last month, of inviting highly trained people to come to Canada if they dont have jobs or theyre not likely to succeed in the labour market. As one of the most visible federal ministers, Kenney has made sure his critique of the system he runs is widely heard and broadly accepted. In particular, companies echo his complaints about Canada bringing in 250,000 newcomers a year, and still failing to provide the workers they need to fill gaps, particularly in the fast-growing West. But as Kenney continues his withering attack, its worth asking: Is the federal program really the unmitigated disaster he suggests? Not by international standards, where Canada is rated highly for its successful integration of immigrants into the economy, or even by some of the yardsticks Kenney has been using to argue Canadas existing immigration system needs to be completely overhauled.
http://www2.macleans.ca/2012/04/18/a-skill-question/

Cities of Migration User Survey 2012 (Cities of Migration)
The international Cities of Migration initiative identifies and shares good practices in immigrant integration what we call “Good Ideas in Integration.” View all Good Ideas on the Cities of Migration website.
http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Citiesofmigrationaudience

Video: Mayor of Cologne, Jürgen Roters, in conversation with Claudia Walther, Bertelsmann Foundation (Cities of Migration)

Immediate labour-force needs are just part of the immigration equation (Globe and Mail)
In the wake of the federal budget and as Immigration Minister Jason Kenney prepares to make sweeping changes, the government should take a balanced approach to reforming the economic-class immigration stream. Addressing both short- and long-term labour-market goals and focusing on highly skilled immigrants seems judicious. Recent policy changes notably greater use of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, the Provincial Nominee Program and the new ministerial instructions have shifted the focus toward the short term, responding especially to pressures to fill occupational and skills shortages.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/opinions/opinion/immediate-labour-force-needs-are-just-part-of-the-immigration-equation/article2406634/

Editorial: Ensuring immigrants success and that of Canada is the purpose of reforms (Vancouver Sun)
Immigration Minister Jason Kenney is to be commended for embarking upon a long-overdue reform of Canada’s immigration policies. For too long, immigration was seen primarily as a humanitarian obligation without regard for its social and economic consequences, ignoring Canada’s own national interest.
http://www.vancouversun.com/touch/story.html?id=6481153&utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

Kenney wants to fast-track some skilled worker applicants (Meagan Fitzpatrick, CBC)
Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney announced further proposed changes to the government’s skilled worker program Tuesday that would allow applicants from certain occupations to be fast-tracked. The Federal Skilled Worker Program is undergoing a number of reforms so that it is faster and more flexible, according to a news release from Kenney’s department.
http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2012/04/17/pol-immigration-changes.html

News Release Minister Kenney launches consultations for a new start-up visa for immigrant entrepreneurs (CIC)
Recognizing the importance of innovation and entrepreneurship as a driver of the Canadian economy, Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney launched consultations today on whether to create a new and specialized program to attract immigrant entrepreneurs. The announcement is the latest in a series Minister Kenney has made about transforming Canadas immigration system into a fast and flexible system focused on jobs, growth and prosperity.
http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/media/releases/2012/2012-04-18.asp

Ottawa outlines plans for startup visa (Wallace Immen, Globe and Mail)
Ottawa is planning a startup visa program to fast track immigrant entrepreneurs and link them up with mentors who can advise them on the way business is done in Canada. Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said consultations with industry associations and immigration settlement groups will be held across the country in the coming months, with the federal government aiming to have a pilot project ready by the end of the year. While details remain sketchy, Mr. Kenney said he envisions the program will allow organizations and credible venture capitalists to vet the business plans of entrepreneurs applying for immigration. The aim would be to find startups with the potential to compete globally and create jobs.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/small-business/ottawa-outlines-plans-for-startup-visa/article2406441/

Immigrant entrepreneurs sought under Canadas new startup visa program (Bernard Weil, Toronto Star)
Amid a global economic slowdown, Ottawa hopes to capitalize on its rock-star status by inviting innovative entrepreneurs abroad to bring their next big idea to Canada. If you have a brilliant business plan and a Canadian investor who bets on your vision, Canadas door is open for you, Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said Wednesday, floating the idea of a new startup visa program for foreign entrepreneurs. There is no doubt immigrants are among our most creative and successful entrepreneurs and investors. They are people who left behind whats familiar to them in order to take a huge chance on an uncertain future to pursue their dreams, Kenney said at a Toronto news conference.
http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/1163721–immigrant-entrepreneurs-sought-under-canada-s-new-startup-visa-program

Canadian Government launches consultations for a new start-up visa for immigrant entrepreneurs (Eric Brooke, Startup Visa)
Recognizing the importance of innovation and entrepreneurship as a driver of the Canadian economy, Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney launched consultations today on whether to create a new and specialized program to attract immigrant entrepreneurs. The announcement is the latest in a series Minister Kenney has made about transforming Canadas immigration system into a fast and flexible system focused on jobs, growth and prosperity.
http://startupvisa.ca/canadian-government-launches-consultations-fo

Canada considers immigrant stream for entrepreneurs (Laura Payton, CBC)
Canada is looking at opening a special immigration stream for entrepreneurs with good startup ideas, Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said today. Kenney has launched consultations with industry associations about the possible program and ways to link immigrant entrepreneurs with private-sector groups. If it goes ahead, the program would run for five years and be limited to 2,750 applications a year. If that tryout is successful, Citizenship and Immigration Canada could introduce it formally through regulatory changes.
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/sudbury/story/2012/04/18/pol-kenney-entrepreneurs-start-up.html

Start-up visas: Ottawa floats way to bring the next Steve Jobs or Google founder to Canada (Toronto Star)
In the global competition for entrepreneurial talent, Ottawa is hoping a new kind of immigration program will help attract the next Google founder not just more convenience store investors. Federal immigration minister Jason Kenney was expected to announce in Toronto on Wednesday the next step in launching a Startup Visa program, one that would attract entrepreneurs who are rich in ideas rather than cash.
http://www.thestar.com/business/article/1163229–start-up-visas-ottawa-floats-way-to-bring-the-next-steve-jobs-or-google-founder-to-canada

Canada considers new visa to attract innovative entreprenueurs (The Malaysian Star)
Canada is looking at opening up a new visa programme for innovative start-up entrepreneurs who intend to invest in Canada, Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenny said, Xinhua news agency reported. Kenny said his ministry would consult with industry associations about the possible programme in the coming months and find ways to link immigrant entrepreneurs with private sector organisations with expertise to help newcomers navigate the Canadian business environment more successfully.
http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2012/4/19/nation/20120419124941&sec=

Speaking notes for The Honourable Jason Kenney, P.C., M.P. Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism (CIC)
At an event with Kevin OLeary to announce the governments intention to create a start-up visa program.
http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/media/speeches/2012/2012-04-18.asp

Immigration office needed in the North (Glenn Thibeault, Greater Sudbury Public)
On April 12, I learned that the Canadian Immigration Services office in Sudbury would be closing their doors as a direct result of funding cuts contained in the Conservatives’ 2012 budget. While I agree with some of your analysis — that it is reasonable to overhaul the immigration system to ensure that it meets the needs of 21st century employers looking to attract highly skilled employees –I dispute your assertion that the shuttering of the immigration office in Sudbury will have little to no effect on Sudbury’s business community and Northern Ontario more broadly.
http://www.thesudburystar.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=3538326

Chinese students in Winnipeg overcharged for rooms (CBC)
A former University of Winnipeg recruitment agent has been charging foreign students as much as $3,000 a month for a small room and a meagre food allowance in his home, according to students. Four high school students from China were recruited to attend the University of Winnipeg Collegiate, a high school that is part of the University of Winnipeg, starting in 2008. The students lived in the Winnipeg home of Ronald Chong, who at the time was a paid recruiter of international students.
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/story/2012/04/18/mb-international-students-homestay-charges-iteam.html

That’s So Racist: Irony, Kids and Racism in a (non-)Post-Racial Society (NorthTOmom)
“That’s so racist,” I heard a friend of my tween daughters say not long ago. She was talking about another girl’s preference for white over dark chocolate. Apparently these types of “jokes” are quite common among the girls and boys in my daughters’ social circle, and they are uttered by white and minority kids alike. J and E claim not to make such comments (as J explained, “I like to stay safe on such issues”on which, more later), but they have heard them, and reported them back to me often enough that it’s clear they consider them “normal.”
I confess I was initially taken aback by the seeming casualness of such remarks. But as I listened to the girls’ anecdotes, I began to wonder if perhaps my white liberal, walking-on-eggshell attitude towards race was the problem. After-all, since 2008 when Obama was elected president, many seemingly intelligent people have argued that North America has become a post-racial society; it’s not a stretch to believe that such a society would be one in which racial consciousness and any residual racism would be expressedand underminedthrough irony. In fact, I could see how the popularity of comics such as Russell Peters and Chris Rock, who draw heavily on ethnic stereotypes for their humour, could lend credence to the argument that the issue of racism carries less gravitas today than it did when I was a kid. At the very least the success of entertainers like Peters attests to the acceptability of a kind of ironized racist expressionalbeit by people of colour themselves, in the context of comedy and entertainment.
http://northtomom.blogspot.com/2012/04/thats-so-racist-irony-kids-and-racism.html

Teen truly regrets making racist video, dad says (Toronto Star)
It may be two minutes shell regret for the rest of her life. Thats about the time it took a young white teen from Brampton to record a YouTube video in which she comes across as a racist. The 16-year-old rants to a camera about how everyone in her Brampton high school is brown, equates turbans with terrorists, moans about having to move from Toronto to Bramladesh, asks white people to get in touch with her and advises brown people to go back to your own country. And now the teen who made those comments in a recent YouTube-posted video gone viral this week with copies faces death threats.
http://www.thestar.com/news/article/1163235–teen-truly-regrets-making-racist-video-dad-says

Muslim Women Wear Underwear, Too (Kait Bolongaro, Schema Magazine)
Last week, a BC photography student found herself needing to defend her freedom of expression as an artist and as a Muslim. Sooraya Graham, a fine arts student at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops, took a black and white photo of a Muslim woman veiled in a niqab folding undergarments for a class assignment. The piece was then put up for display in one of the university’s hallways, only to be vandalized and taken down by an offended staff member. This image has sparked a bitter argument about cultural norms, religious stereotyping and censorship. According to the Huffington Post, Graham said she wanted to remind people that Muslim women wear underwear in order to ‘humanize’ the subjects. By showing Muslim women performing a mundane task, Graham hopes the audience can find them to be more relatable.
http://www.schemamag.ca/archive2/2012/04/muslim_women_wear_underwear_to.php

According to the Alberta Wildrose Alliance Only a White Man Can (Hervé St-louis, Comic Book Bin)
Im Albertan, indulge me. As the province, the richest in Canada draws near to a game-changing election, the front-runners, the Wildrose Alliance of Alberta, a right-wing party is about to supplant the ruling Progressive Conservative dynasty of 42 years currently headed by Premier Alison Redford. Redford is the first woman to ever hold the top job in Alberta. Her main opponent is the Wildroses Danielle Smith, a former television broadcaster and news anchorwoman whom many have compared to Sarah Palin. This week has been tough for the Wildrose with opponents digging into many of its social conservative candidates history and two major gaffes that could potentially cost the election or a majority. That is if a majority care about that in Alberta only a white man can, according to the Wildrose.
http://www.comicbookbin.com/wildrose001.html

Toronto Islamic centre yanks controversial web links (Terry Davidson, QMI Agency)
A downtown Islamic centre has removed links on its website that led visitors to other sites featuring speakers who preach intolerance and terrorism. Its organizers insisted they were unaware of any connection to Islamic radicalism. Since January, the Walk-in Islamic Infocentre has been placing controversial posters in various TTC stations.
http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/Canada/2012/04/18/19650926.html

Will The Bachelor Canada be more racially diverse than its American predecessor? (Kevin Naulls, Toronto Life)
News broke yesterday that Nathaniel Claybrooks and Christopher Johnsontwo athletes who interviewed and were turned down for ABCs The Bachelorare suing for racial discrimination. Over 10 years and 23 seasons, each and every Bachelor and Bachelorette has been white. Three law firms are working with Claybrooks and Johnson, and the plan is to file a class-action complaint in federal court against ABC, Next Entertainment and executive producer Mike Fleiss. We wondered if the decade-long tradition of only casting white hotties would continue with The Bachelor Canada, but Sonia Brum, publicity manager for the CityTV show, says, As youll note when The Bachelor Canada premieres this fall, the series celebrates the true diversity of our country, and as such, this rich multiculturalism will be reflected in the Bachelorettes on the show.
http://www.torontolife.com/daily/hype/prime-time/2012/04/18/will-the-bachelor-canada-be-racially-diverse/

Diversity 50 beta (Canadian Board Diversity Council)
Diversity 50 is a sponsor-driven approach to improving board diversity in Canada. There is an increasing body of research suggesting that sponsorship, as opposed to mentorship, is critically important to the ability of an individual in a senior management role to advance into an executive role. The premise of Diversity 50 is that sponsorship is equally important to an individual being invited to join a corporate board. The Council has launched Canadas first-ever database of diverse candidates Diversity 50 for board of director positions in Canadas largest 500 organizations. In September 2012 the Council will release a list of 50 diverse individuals as qualified by criteria vetted by a group of leading Canadian CEOs. They are HSBC Canada President and CEO Lindsay Gordon; Deloitte Managing Partner and Chief Executive Alan MacGibbon; Norton Rose Chairman Norm Steinberg; IAMGOLD President & CEO Steve Letwin; Iron Ore Company of Canada President & CEO Zoë Yujnovich and Hydro Québec CEO and President Thierry Vandal. The 50 candidates will also be included in the new GMI Diverse Director DataSource («3D»), which has been commissioned by the California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) and California State Teachers Retirement System (CalSTRS) to support demand for a more diverse, international pool of director candidates.
http://www.boarddiversity.ca/en/diversity50.html

CBDC launches Canada-first Diversity 50 database of board candidates (Money.ca)
The Canadian Board Diversity Council (CBDC) announced today it is launching Canadas first-ever database of diverse candidates for board of director positions in Canadas largest 500 organizations. The new initiative, Diversity 50, supports the Councils mandate to increase representation of candidates who reflect the diversity of the broader Canadian population. Diversity 50 is designed to help directors and their search firms identify new, diverse directors who are unknown to them but who have strong competencies that should be assessed against a boards requirements, said Pamela Jeffery, CBDC Founder. Diversity 50 takes away the argument that a board doesnt know where to find diverse candidates.
http://money.ca/money/labour/cbdc-launches-canada-first-diversity-50-database-of-board-candidates/

Group compiling slate of screened candidates to diversify boardrooms (Janet Mcfarland, Globe and Mail)
A coalition of Canadian business executives is championing a way to improve diversity on boards by using a new system to screen prospective directors and prepare a database of available board candidates. The Canadian Board Diversity Council will announce Thursday that it plans to create a list of 50 screened directorial candidates who can bring diversity to corporate boards that are seeking new members. The Diversity 50 list will include women, visible minorities, aboriginal candidates and people with disabilities.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/group-compiling-slate-of-screened-candidates-to-diversify-boardrooms/article2406545/

Absence of non-white appointments to the bench shows appointments process is broken (Globe and Mail)
Merit should be the number-one criterion for judicial appointments, and there seems to be a startling coincidence between merit and skin colour on federally appointed courts. Out of the last 100 appointments to those courts, which include the superior courts of provinces, only two have been non-white. Is merit the near-exclusive preserve of white people? Of course its not, and the pattern of exclusion discovered in legwork by Globe and Mail reporter Kirk Makin should be treated as a call to action by Justice Minister Rob Nicholson, the cabinet and Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/opinions/editorials/absence-of-non-white-appointments-to-the-bench-shows-appointments-process-is-broken/article2406762/

Enriching heritage through song and dance (Heather Campbell, Northern Life)
For the past 20 years, the India Canada Association has provided an opportunity for young people to learn about their rich cultural heritage and showcase the songs and dances they learn together through an annual youth festival. The local Association played host to that festival this past weekend with cultural dances and cuisine at the United Steelworkers Hall.
http://www.northernlife.ca/news/localNews/2012/04/18-india-association-youth-festival-sudbury.aspx

Transgender Miss Universe? (CBC Metro Morning)
Matt Galloway spoke with Nina Arsenault and Chase Joynt. They are trans-sexual artists and activists in Toronto.
http://www.cbc.ca/metromorning/episodes/2012/04/18/transgender-in-miss-universe/

Registration now open for the 2012 OCASI Professional Development Conference (Settlement AtWork)
The 2012 OCASI Professional Development Conference will take place on June 13-15, 2012 at the Westin Prince Hotel, Toronto, Ontario. The Conference program is now online and registration is open.
http://www.settlementatwork.org/_news_/95104

Diversity : Canadian Unitarian Council (Ben Wolfe, Canadian Unitarian Council)
CANADIAN UUs are justly proud of our commitment to social justice and our openness to diversity but we may also be quietly aware our membership is not very diverse. A new book of readings released this month by Skinner House Books, the publishing imprint of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), aims to deepen our conversation on this challenging subject.
http://cuc.ca/category/social-responsibility/diversity/

REFUGEES

Send articles on Bill C-31 to community media (CCR)
The Justice for Refugees and Immigrants Coalition (Amnesty International Canada, the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association and the Canadian Council for Refugees), together with dozens of other groups, stand for a fair, independent and affordable refugee system. Members of the Coalition have written a series of five articles with concerns about Bill C-31 and how it fails to protect refugees and the interests of Canadians. Bill C-31 is presently being debated in Parliament, so now is a good time to share them with local newspapers and community radio stations. Contact local community media outlets, especially ones in languages other than English or French. Ask them to publish the articles below as a series or individually.
http://ccrweb.ca/en/c-31-articles-for-community-media

Justice for Refugees and Immigrants Coalition Update (Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers)
The Justice for Refugees and Immigrants Coalition (Amnesty International Canada, the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association and the Canadian Council for Refugees), together with dozens of other groups, stand for a fair, independent and affordable refugee system. Members of the Coalition have written a series of five articles with concerns about Bill C-31 and how it fails to protect refugees and the interests of Canadians. Bill C-31 is presently being debated in Parliament, so now is a good time to share them with local newspapers and community radio stations.
http://www.refugeelawyersgroup.ca/coalitionupdate

The hazardous journeys of Sri Lankan Tamil refugees (Swaminathan Natarajan, BBC)
Relatives and friends of Sri Lankan Tamils who risked their lives in search of a better future abroad after the end of the war in May 2009 are desperately seeking information as to their fates. Thousands of Tamils migrated from the country to escape the violence of the 30-year civil war, which ended with Sri Lankan troops routing the separatist Tamil Tigers. Many have fallen prey to dangerous human smuggling networks, their families say.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-16530218

Lethbridge becoming magnet for Bhutan refugees (CBC)
Nearly 20 years ago the Gurungs were among 100,000 people forced from Bhutan into refugee camps in neighbouring Nepal. Now those people are slowly being resettled around the world. Canada is one of seven countries that agreed to take refugees from the camps. Its probably becoming one of the larger ethnic communities in Lethbridge, said Sarah Amies, who works with Lethbridge Immigrant Services. Over the last three years the agency has welcomed more than 500 Bhutanese refugees to the city.
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/story/2012/04/18/calgary-lethbridge-bhutan-immigrants.html

POVERTY / HEALTH / HOMELESSNESS / SOCIAL INCLUSION

TDSB budget woes: Education assistants and school superintendents as a nice-to-have (Diane Dyson, belonging community)
My young son hated school when he started it; he hated school so much he ran away frequently. One January morning, wearing no shoes, he ran out straight out the school doors having realized stopping to grab outerwear would slow his escape. His heroic kindergarten education assistant was the one who caught him again. So when Mike Harris threatened to cut funding for education assistants, I began a long career as a parent activist. My son will graduate from high school next year, and education assistants are being cut once more. (I dont remember a time when school funding wasnt being cut.) In 2012, the Toronto District School Board is looking at another yawning funding gap, one that has now grown to over $100 million a year.
http://belongingcommunity.wordpress.com/2012/04/19/tdsb-budget-woes-education-assistants-and-school-superintendents-as-a-nice-to-have/

Opening the Window (Joy Connelly, Opening the Window)
A conversation with a senior civil servant some years ago made a lasting impression on me. He said, I see myself as a risk manager. He knew that politicians of every political stripe were waiting to pounce on procedural errors for political gain. It doesnt matter how innovative a project is he said, or how brilliant its success. If they find one picky error in the procurement process, my department is on the line. His strategy was to hunker down, protect his core programs, and do nothing more. And I thought: Is there a greater waste of public money than this: to pay for a civil service that is afraid to do good? I thought of this conversation afresh when I saw the terms of reference for the LeSage Review requested by Toronto Community Housings board of directors. As you will recall, two former TCHC executives and members of the Daniels Group voluntarily invested their own money in Regent Parks success by buying condo units at the market price.
http://openingthewindow.com/2012/04/18/afraid-to-do-good/

EMPLOYMENT & WORKERS

hireimmigrants.ca User Survey 2012 (hireimmigrants.ca)
Please help us improve the hireimmigrants.ca website by completing the following online survey. We welcome your honest feedback and all responses will remain confidential.
http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/hireusersurvey

3 Ways to Prepare Skilled Immigrants for Promotion (hireimmigrants.ca)
Do you expect employees to speak up when they want a promotion? If you take this approach, you may be overlooking many talented employees who come from a culture where its customary to wait for an invitation for promotion. There are three ways managers can be proactive and encourage all employees, including skilled immigrants, to apply for suitable positions.
http://www.hireimmigrants.ca/etips/3-ways-to-prepare-skilled-immigrants-for-promotion/

Keen newcomers thwarted (Carol Sanders, Winnipeg Free Press)
Abby Buenafe was an operating-room nurse with four years’ experience in the Philippines. To come to Winnipeg in 2000, she took a demotion to work in a nursing home as a licensed practical nurse. Her full credentials weren’t recognized until she took the registered nursing exam a year-and-a-half later. Zita Somakoko, who qualified as a pharmacist in her home country in Africa, came to Winnipeg more than six years ago. She hasn’t been able to get through a lengthy licensing process while working and raising a family. “It takes a while to get accreditation off the ground,” said Monika Feist, who runs a non-profit agency. The Success Skills Centre started in 1985 to help foreign-trained professionals get to work in their field. The backlog of those underemployed professionals in Manitoba needs to be addressed, she said.
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/keen-newcomers-thwarted-147880075.html

Conservatives want unemployed to fill jobs going to temporary foreign workers: Jason Kenney (Sarah Boesveld, National Post)
Ottawa is preparing to crack down on employment-insurance recipients who are not seeking work in areas where employers are forced to bring in foreign workers to fill jobs. Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said Wednesday the government wants to reduce disincentives to work by creating a greater connection between the EI program and the temporary foreign worker program, which is under Mr. Kenneys purview. What we will be doing is making people aware theres hiring going on and reminding them that they have an obligation to apply for available work and to take it if theyre going to qualify for EI, Mr. Kenney told the National Post editorial board on Wednesday. He was touting immigration reforms that will try to streamline the entry of immigrants and foreign workers, favouring entrepreneurs, innovators and those with high quality professional credentials.
http://news.nationalpost.com/2012/04/18/conservatives-want-unemployed-to-fill-jobs-going-to-temporary-foreign-workers-jason-kenney/

Foreign docs could get fast-tracked: Kenney (Norman De Bono, Canoe.ca)
Canada wants to open its doors to more foreign-trained doctors and other professionals to meet demand, getting qualified immigrants out of taxi cabs and corner stores, Immigration Minister Jason Kenney announced Tuesday. Using London Health Sciences Centre as a backdrop, Kenney announced a sweeping overhaul of the immigration system aimed at clearing a backlog of cases. Another objective is to push those who can work in Canada in areas such as engineering, skilled trades and medicine to the front of the list.
http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/Politics/2012/04/17/pf-19645956.html

Sask. likes fast-track plan for foreign doctors (CBC)
Reports that the federal government is keen to fast-track the immigration process for foreign doctors are being welcomed in Saskatchewan. Provincial officials said Wednesday it can take up to two years for the current system to handle an application from a foreign doctor to come to Saskatchewan.
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/story/2012/04/18/sk-physician-foreign-immigration-120418.html

Fast-tracking skilled immigrants (Queen’s University)
Queens University law professor Sharry Aiken is available to discuss Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney’s proposed changes to the federal government’s skilled worker program that would allow applicants from certain occupations to be fast-tracked. Professor Aiken, an expert on refugee and immigration law, applauds the move for a faster, more flexible selection system but she has a number of concerns.
http://www.queensu.ca/news/media/hottopic/fast-tracking-skilled-immigrants

Skilled Worker Non-Processing Letters Going Out (Steven Meurrens)
From what I can tell, the Minister is currently governing through press release. Ironically, the press release notes that the cancellation and refund of the above applications will occur as a result of proposed legislation. The proposed legislation has not yet been introduced either in the House of Commons or in the Canada Gazette. Despite that, Citizenship and Immigration Canada is already cancelling applications. Press releases cannot trump statute, and I predict an upcoming wave of successful litigation.
http://www.smeurrens.com/2012/04/skilled-worker-non-processing-letters-going-out/

CITY OF TORONTO / CITIES / CIVIC ENGAGEMENT

Thursday’s Headlines (Spacing Toronto)
A daily round up of mainstream media news on City Hall, Transit, Entertainment, Rob Ford Vs., Toronto Zoo and Other News.
http://getpocket.com/a/read/155771100

CSI Regent Park Blog: A Community Garden (Natasha Stephens, CSI)
This is my favorite time of the year in Regent Park; its sowing time in the community gardens that spring up in the green spaces at the foot of many of the old buildings. The gardens are not just for a show, by the summer, there will be peas, lettuce and a variety of garden vegetables. The best thing of all is that the produce from the gardens will end up on many of the kitchen tables in the apartment buildings above. Back in the summer of 2009, CSI Regent Park was just a plot of un-developed land. It all started when CSI responded to a request for expressions of interest from Artscape, who were looking for prospective tenants for the new Arts and Cultural Centre. At the time, the Arts and Cultural Centre was an excavation site, and the initial CSI proposal was for a creativity lab in Regent Parka think tank type of extension of CSI Spadina, a 24,000 sq ft facility at 215 Spadina Avenue.
http://socialinnovation.ca/blog/csi-regent-park-blog-grow-reach-our-world

SOCIAL INNOVATION / NONPROFITS

Make AODA training count for more than compliance (Marcia Scheffler, First Reference Works)
So you are a human resources manager or a general manager of a company of 20 or more employees and youve figured out what you have to do to comply with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA). In particular you know you have a responsibility to train employees and that you will be required to self-report. Hopefully your organization has performed a workplace assessment and created policies and procedures, and you are ready to roll out your accessibility program and training.
http://blog.firstreference.com/2012/04/18/make-aoda-training-count-for-more-than-compliance/

Generous Canadians: Latest Statistics on Giving and Volunteering (Marcel Lauzière, Imagine Canada)
Canadians are generous and engaged with their communities. They donate their time, money, energy and skills to the causes that matter to them the most. These individuals are the foundational support for Canadas more than 165,000 charities and nonprofits which in turn support our communities social fabric and quality-of-life.
http://blog.imaginecanada.ca/2012/04/16/generous-canadians-latest-statistics-on-giving-and-volunteering/

HUMAN TRAFFICKING / MODERN-DAY SLAVERY

War on pimps and human traffickers (Jenny Yuen, Toronto Sun)
Invidiata, who is the founder of Free-Them, an anti-human trafficking advocacy group, wants to bring awareness of how detrimental those changes to the Criminal Code will have on trafficking victims right to the Supreme Court of Canada. It hasnt been made clear if that appeal is going to go through, so this is our moment, she said. Roughly 75% of human trafficking in Canada takes place in Southwestern Ontario. In that Southwestern Ontario sector, 62.5% of trafficking cases come from the GTA, Invidiata noted. Thats a staggering number and people dont realize it happens here, she said.
http://www.torontosun.com/2012/04/14/war-on-pimps-and-human-traffickers

Barriers remain in human trafficking battle (Hamilton Spectator)
The idea that human trafficking happens in Canada is hard for many of us to accept, yet thousands are exploited every year. Thats why the Catholic order of School Sisters of Notre Dame formed the Waterdown-based stop human trafficking committee in 2004. Since then, they have worked to raise awareness about the issue, in particular, the sexual exploitation of women and children. The group focuses on education and advocacy, touring schools, churches and conferences explaining human trafficking and what people can do to help, including signing petitions to strengthen laws.
http://www.thespec.com/news/local/article/707117–barriers-remain-in-human-trafficking-battle

Human trafficking convict is wanted for parole breach (Chris Doucette, Toronto Sun)
A man who became Canadas first convicted human trafficker in 2008 for pimping out teenage girls in Mississauga is back on the street and off the grid. The provincial Repeat Offender Parole Enforcement (ROPE) Squad says Imani Nakpangi, 29, is wanted on a Canada-wide warrant for breaching his parole and as long as he remains at large there is a risk young girls could be forced into sexual slavery.
http://www.torontosun.com/2012/04/17/human-trafficking-convict-is-wanted-for-parole-breach

The following two tabs change content below.

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.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Read previous post:
Daily Reads/Micro Thoughts Summary

RT @canadahelps: RT @techsoupcanada How to quickly (relatively speaking) optimize your website for mobile devices http://t.co/oazhiYiD v ... RT @prepare4canada:...

Close