Immigration & Diversity news headlines – April 2, 2012

IMMIGRATION / SETTLEMENT / DIVERSITY

New immigrants are the hidden homeless (Nicholas Keung, Toronto Star)
Its tough to live with so many people in so little space, but you are bound to live like this when you dont have money, said Rosario, 61, a bakery chef, who two months ago finally moved into a subsidized seniors apartment after four years on the waiting list. But a new study on immigrant housing warns that thousands of newcomers continue to live in hidden homelessness in shared, overcrowded housing an issue that has grown more acute, especially in Toronto, where affordable rental units are in short supply. The national study by Metropolis, an international network of researchers in immigration policy, found most newcomers reported spending more than 50 per cent of income on housing, with 15 per cent spending 75 per cent or more. Financial difficulties force many newcomers to share accommodations that are often poor quality, overcrowded and unsafe, says the report.
http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/1155144–new-immigrants-are-the-hidden-homeless-hidden-homelessness-a-growing-problem-for-canada-s-newcomers

Complete study (PDF) – http://mbc.metropolis.net/assets/uploads/files/Precarious_Housing_Toronto_study.pdf

Budget 2012: Tories commit to treating im/migrants as labour, not people (Yen Chu Syed Hussan Mary-Elizabeth Dill, rabble.ca)
The federal budget released this week proudly declares: “Economic Action Plan 2012 announces the government’s intention to build a fast and flexible economic immigration system whose primary focus is on meeting Canada’s labour market needs.” Very well. Let all doubts be put to rest. Immigrants are not human beings, not families, not cultural and social producers, not eating, sleeping, drinking, loving bodies — just automatons, labour, just the “inputs” necessary for the market to keep pumping profit.
http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/no-one-illegal/2012/04/federal-budget-2012-immigrants-just-labour-not-people

Federal budget 2012: Skilled immigrants urge investments into talents already in Canada (Nicholas Keung, Toronto Star)
While the change is welcomed as it would give future migrants a better understanding of how their credentials are measured against Canadian standards and hopefully help them hit the ground running quicker, many like Pasha also fear those who are already here would be forgotten. Although the Conservative government has tripled its immigrant settlement budget since 2006, it has reduced the investment in newcomers programs such as language training and employment services since 2010. Ontario alone has lost almost $75 million settlement funding. Further cuts are expected. To address the issue of the waste of immigrant skills, Ottawa established the Foreign Credentials Referral Office in 2006 to provide better licensing information to newcomers and launched orientation sessions for approved immigrants before arrival. The program is available in 25 countries.
http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/1154844–federal-budget-2012-skilled-immigrants-urge-investments-into-talents-already-in-canada

Federal budget 2012: Immigration reforms to speed entry of economic immigrants (Bruce Campion-Smith, Toronto Star)
The federal government is wiping out a waiting list of more than 200,000 foreign workers and returning the $130 million they paid in processing fees as it begins an ambitious overhaul of the countrys immigration system. Hopeful immigrants who applied before Feb. 27, 2008, to come to Canada as skilled workers will have their fees returned and be told to apply again under new programs that put greater emphasis on their work skills. The news has already created shockwaves among immigration lawyers and consultants, who anticipated myriad legal actions against the government.
http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/1153793–federal-budget-2012-immigration-reforms-to-speed-entry-of-economic-immigrants

Minister Of Deportation Now Proposing To Assess Foreign Credentials Before Workers Get Here (The Link)
Jason Kenney, dubbed the Minister of Deportation for his active and aggressive stance against immigrants, is now proposing a major change to how foreign skilled workers education credentials are assessed. The proposed new requirement would mean that applicants wanting to immigrate as Federal Skilled Workers would have their foreign education credentials assessed and verified by designated organizations before they arrive in Canada.
http://thelinkpaper.ca/?p=15519

Backlog wipeout will close thousands of immigration applications (CBC)
More than 280,000 people who have been waiting years for a decision on their immigration files could be soon be chopped from the list as the federal government moves to streamline its immigration practices. Its a decision some immigration lawyers are calling a betrayal by the government that they say is changing the rules too late in the game. These people have had the rug pulled out from underneath them, said Montreal-based lawyer David Chalk.
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/story/2012/04/01/montreal-immigration-budget-backlog-skilled-workers.html

Government of Canada Transforms Economic Immigration Program (Marketwire)
To create a fast and flexible immigration system that creates jobs and promotes Canada’s long term prosperity, the Government of Canada will eliminate the backlog in the main federal economic immigration program. “The Federal Skilled Worker Program backlog is a major roadblock to Canada’s ability to respond to rapidly changing labour market needs,” said Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney. “Having to process applications that are as many as eight years out of date reduces our ability to focus on new applicants with skills and talents that our economy needs today.”
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/government-of-canada-transforms-economic-immigration-program-2012-03-30

Federal job bank would fast-track immigrants with right skills: Kenney (Peter O’Neil, Postmedia News)
The federal government plans to create a global job bank to bring in more skilled foreign workers, while using a new technique to end the “bizarre” situation where low-skilled temporary foreign workers are hired in Canadian communities with double-digit unemployment, Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said Friday. The job bank idea, modelled after New Zealand’s immigration system, is a major departure that will take legislation and at least two years to implement, according to Kenney.
http://www.canada.com/business/Federal+bank+would+fast+track+immigrants+with+right+skills+Kenney/6388085/story.html

Report – Immigration, Integration and Welcoming Communities: The Role of Ethnic Community Organizations – PDF (Drs. Shibao Guo and Yan Guo, University of Calgary)
Ethnic community organizations are often criticized for threatening national unity, diluting Canadian identity, and promoting ghettoization and separatism. Drawing from two case studies, this article examines the role of Chinese ethnic organizations in responding to changing community needs in Edmonton and Calgary. The study results suggested that ethnic community organizations can be an effective alternative in providing accessible and equitable social services for immigrants because they are more closely connected with and responsive to ethnic community needs. The study reveals the salience of ethnicity as both an important resource, and a liability. On the one hand, ethnicity was utilized by the state as a way to mobilize ethnic political support to serve an ethnic-specific community; on the other hand, the same ethnicity also became a device for the state to legitimize its political agenda in multiculturizing ethno-specific organizations with an ultimate goal of assimilation. To build an inclusive society, it is imperative to treat ethnic community organizations as an integral part of Canadian society and to adopt minority rights that recognize and accommodate the distinctive identities and needs of ethno-cultural groups and their ethnic communities
http://pcerii.metropolis.net/WorkingPapers/Working%20papers%20from%20June,%202009/PMC%20WP%20GUOS%5B1%5D.pdf

Community-SPO Atlas of Canada’s Large Urban Centres (Integration-Net)
Funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), this project is designed to fill the gap in stakeholders’ collective knowledge of how the immigrant population and immigrant-specific service provider organizations (SPOs) are distributed (concentrated or dispersed) in the physical and social geography of Canada’s large urban centres. To address this need, we built a one-stop online platform by using geographic information system (GIS) technology.
http://www.integration-net.ca:81/atlas/index-e.php

A ‘new day’ for religion in Canada (Brent Wittmeier, Edmonton Journal)
Everything you thought you knew about religion in Canada is wrong. That’s the impression you just might get from Reginald Bibby, the University of Lethbridge sociologist and longtime religion trendwatcher. Bibby was at west Edmonton’s Covenant Reformed Church last weekend to address the Edmonton District and Council of Churches, an ecumenical group mostly comprised of mainline Protestants and Catholics.
http://www.edmontonjournal.com/life/religion+Canada/6390577/story.html

2012 Immigrants of Distinction Awards Gala celebrates contributions to Calgary (Bill Brooks, Calgary Herald)
Canada is a nation of immigrants, and I bet you, too, dear readers, can trace your roots all over the globe. For our new immigrants, while it is no doubt challenging, Immigrant Services Calgary helps immigrants and their families to make Canada home. And its recent 2012 Immigrants of Distinction Awards (IDA) Gala held at the Westin proved the perfect opportunity to celebrate the outstanding contributions of immigrants to our great city.
http://www.calgaryherald.com/2012+Immigrants+Distinction+Awards+Gala+celebrates+contributions+Calgary/6388343/story.html

More controversial Muslim books for sale (Terry Davidson, QMI Agency)
An Islamic bookstore in east Toronto is selling books that urge Muslims to usurp the Western world and install an Islamic State in its place. The books, written by deceased Islamic scholar Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi are available at the Islamic Circle of North America bookstore in Scarborough.
http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/Canada/2012/03/30/19573341.html

Celebrate diversity in Pickering (Tara Hatherly, DurhamRegion.com)
Residents are invited to celebrate diversity while enjoying dinner and music in support of a local women’s shelter. An Evening with Food for Thought takes place Saturday, April 7 at the Pickering Nuclear Information Centre, 1675 Montgomery Park Rd. Hosted by Friends Indeed, the event features an address from MP Chris Alexander titled ‘Afghan People, Myth and Reality’, as well as a speech titled ‘Muslim Contribution to Canada’ by prominent lawyer and community activist Arif Raza. The evening also features a tribute to Faiz Ahmed Faiz by Ashfaq Hussain, and ghazal, sitar and tabla performances.
http://www.durhamregion.com/community/article/1326433–celebrate-diversity-in-pickering

UBC study offers hope for Asian Canadian queer teens suffering “dual minority discrimination” (Craig Takeuchi, Straight.com)
It’s not easy being a teenager. And it’s not easy being an ethnic minority teen. But what about being a gay ethnic minority teen? A new study reveals that Asian Canadian gay, lesbian, or bisexual teens are a whopping 30 times more likely to be discriminated against than their Asian Canadian straight peers. And in dealing with that stress, Asian Canadian sexual minority youth were 10 times more likely to resort to alcohol or drugs than their heterosexual Asian Canadian classmates.
http://www.straight.com/article-649161/vancouver/ubc-study-offers-hope-asian-canadian-queer-teens-suffering-dual-minority-discrimination

Full study: http://cjcmh.metapress.com/app/home/contribution.asp?referrer=parent&backto=issue,5,12;journal,1,63;linkingpublicationresults,1:120150,1

Canadian stem cell drive targets Chinese donors (China Daily)
Canada’s Chinese community put out the call for more stem cell donors Saturday to address a disproportionate under-representation in the international stem cell registry. With a list where Chinese represents less than 3 percent while Caucasians make up about 80 percent of the Bone Marrows Donor Worldwide registry, the Toronto-based Other Half Chinese Stem Cell Initiative organized a four-city stem cell drive, all on the same day, to bring greater awareness to the situation.
http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/china/2012-04/01/content_14966349.htm

NDP condemns decision barring woman with Down Syndrome
A New Democrat MP is demanding the federal government reverse a decision to bar a family from India from emigrating to Canada to join their son in B.C. because their adult daughter has Down Syndrome. The son, Kevin Patel of Vancouver, wanted to sponsor his parents and sister to come to Canada to become permanent residents.
http://winnipeg.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20120331/ndp-mp-criticizes-down-syndrome-decision-120331/20120331/?hub=WinnipegHome

American UVic prof forced to leave Canada after immigration rules sons autism too big a taxpayer burden (Steve Mertl, Yahoo! News)
Amid concerns the U.S. autism rates are higher than previously thought, a University of Victoria professor is being forced to take his family back to their native United States because his young son is autistic. Psychology instructor Jeffrey Niehaus, his wife and two children are preparing to leave Canada after immigration officials denied their application to become permanent residents on grounds that treating their son’s autism would be a costly burden on taxpayers.
http://ca.news.yahoo.com/blogs/dailybrew/american-uvic-prof-forced-leave-canada-immigration-rules-175808035.html

Our City, Our World – focus on South Asian migrants to Manitoba (Winnipeg Free Press)
Winnipeg Free Press has released their latest in-depth series covering South Asian immigrants to the province. Articles:

Our City, Our World: South Asian equation
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opinion/fyi/south-asian-equation-145317045.html

Beautiful connections
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opinion/westview/beautiful-connections-145317995.html

It’s an Indo (hyphen) world
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/special/ourcityourworld/southAsia/its-an-indo-hyphen-world-145317985.html

Profiles of our South Asian community
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/special/ourcityourworld/southAsia/faces-of-our-south-asian-community-145316995.html

Finding Ganga in the Assiniboine
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/special/ourcityourworld/southAsia/finding-ganga-in-the-assiniboine-145317635.html

Hindu centre teems with diverse activity
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/special/ourcityourworld/southAsia/hindu-centre-teems-with-diverse-activity-145317335.html

After more than a decade, Punjab Cultural Centre to open this fall
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/special/ourcityourworld/southAsia/bigger-and-better-145317005.html

Sisters make traditional dance relevant
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/special/ourcityourworld/southAsia/sisters-make-traditional-dance-relevant-145317825.html

She turned her passion into a successful business
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/special/ourcityourworld/southAsia/she-turned-her-passion-into-a-successful-business-145317205.html

Faith, family, football: Bombers’ Khan has his priorities straight
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/special/ourcityourworld/southAsia/faith-family-football-145317615.html

Raunak – showcasing South Asian talent in Winnipeg
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/multimedia/?slideshow=145235115#slideshows

Arranged marriages misunderstood in the West
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/special/ourcityourworld/southAsia/arranged-marriages-misunderstood-in-the-west-145317355.html

Lights go dark on ‘Mosque’, but its message still inspires (Muhammad Ayish, The National)
When the Canadian sitcom Little Mosque on the Prairie goes off the air after six seasons today, it will be remembered not only as one of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s top-rated shows, but also as a reminder of how religious and cultural diversity sustains western-Muslim co-existence. Ever since its debut on CBC in January 2007, Mosque, as it’s known, has done more for North American Muslim and non-Muslim relations than any conference or summit could have done.
http://www.thenational.ae/thenationalconversation/comment/lights-go-dark-on-mosque-but-its-message-still-inspires

REFUGEES

Refugee cases should be decided on merit — not on whim (Globe and Mail editorial)
Refugee claims should stand or fall on the merits of the case not on the biases and whims of adjudicators. These decisions have enormous consequences: if a decision-maker at the Immigration and Refugee Board gets it wrong, the person will be sent back to a country where he or she could face persecution, torture or even death, or conversely they could be allowed in under an invented pretext. That is why applications for review to the Federal Court of Canada are so important. Appeals which are supposed to correct errors in the first instance and send a case back to be reheard by a different IRB member offer a crucial safeguard.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/opinions/editorials/refugee-cases-should-be-decided-on-merit—-not-on-whim/article2387602

Coalition of refugee advocates demand changes to Bill C-31 (Canadian News blog)
A coalition of human rights advocates and refugee lawyers have told Jason Kenney, minister of citizenship, immigration and multiculturalism, that he must change Bill C-31. At a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, five prominent speakers from Amnesty International, the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association and the Canadian Council for Refugees, outlined what they say are serious flaws in the bill and why it must be withdrawn or defeated at second reading in the House of Commons.
http://canadiannewsblog.blogspot.ca/2012/03/coalition-of-refugee-advocates-demand.html

Hanging in limbo (Stanley Tromp, Vancouver Courier)
Conservative Immigration Minister Jason Kenney says the bill is “faster and fairer,” will weed out bogus refugee claimants, make the nation more secure from terrorists and war criminals, and save taxpayers money. Kenney’s reforms have a few supporters. For example, a biting editorial in the National Post in June 2010 stated that “the Liberal caucus [is] so beholden to ethnic political chiefs, immigration industry activists, and their own ideological sappiness that they oppose any move that might reduce the influx of new immigrants and refugees.” But of course there are contrary viewpoints.
http://www.vancourier.com/life/Hanging+limbo/6383845/story.html

Bill to fight human smuggling only punishes its victims (Bill Frelick and Jennifer Egsgard, Toronto Star)
Parliament is currently debating legislation that would require one-year, mandatory detention for certain migrants arriving in Canada, including 16- and 17-year-old children. Ostensibly intended to prevent human smuggling, this bill in fact punishes victims of human smuggling, including those desperately fleeing persecution and violence.
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/article/1154631–bill-to-fight-human-smuggling-only-punishes-its-victims

Immigration Ministers Bill C-31 will target the most vulnerable (CCLA)
According to Bill Frelick and Jennifer Egsgard, the deemed human smuggling bill to protect Canadas immigration system will only harm the most vulnerable and desperate: the victims of human smuggling. If there are reasonable grounds to suspect certain groups of individuals association with human smuggling (including, those who were themselves victims of smuggling), these individuals can be sent to jail up to one full year. This includes children who are 16 and 17 years of age.
http://www.ccla.org/rightswatch/2012/03/31/immigration-ministers-bill-c-31-will-target-the-most-vulnerable/

Are refugees at our border crying wolf? (Brian Dyck, Mennonite Central Committee)
Next Wednesday, April 4th, is the 27th anniversary of the Supreme Court of Canadas Singh decision. The Singh decision declared that when Section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms says, Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice, it did not just refer to Canadian citizens. The Court decided that the seven appellants (six with the surname Singh from India and a seventh with the surname of Indrani from Guyana) were not given the opportunity to make their case for asylum orally before the Immigration Appeal Board (IAB) or hear the case against them, and thus their rights under the Charter were violated.
http://mccottawa.ca/stories/news/are-refugees-our-border-crying-wolf

Roma seek refuge in Parkdale (Joe Fiorito, Toronto Star)
Life is short, the lineup is long, the phone is ringing, the day has just begun and already Madeleine Egri is swamped. Madi works at the Parkdale Intercultural Association, an immigration services storefront near Queen and Lansdowne; it might not attract your attention, but it is a beacon for refugee claimants in Parkdale. Madi was hired to work here a few months ago; her job, to greet people, take calls and do office work; however, she speaks Hungarian, and many Hungarian Roma refugee claimants land in Parkdale, and so Madis duties quickly expanded. Of course, immigration is a moving stream and she does not just work with people who have come from Hungary.
http://www.thestar.com/news/article/1154919–fiorito-roma-seek-refuge-in-parkdale?bn=1

Film Screening and Panel Discussion on Roma Refugees – April 11th, 2012 (Ottawa Start)
Documentary Film Screening and Panel Discussion Wednesday April 11th, 2012 6:30PM – 9:30PM Library and Archives Auditorium 395 Wellington Street, Ottawa Admission is by donation The One World Film Festival presents its first screening of the year, the locally-produced documentary on Roma refugees, Never Come Back by Karl Nerenberg and Malcolm Hamilton. If you have been following the debate on the new, tougher refugee law (Bill C-31) you may wonder who the Roma are and what their story really is. This film will help you understand.
http://ottawastart.com/story/16566.php

on Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act (David Anderson, OpenParliament.ca)
Mr. Speaker, I understand the frustration the member for Mississauga EastCooksville has with an answer like that. I heard the member opposite say that there was no such thing as a good or bad refugee, that they are just refugees. There really are legitimate refugees but there are others who are trying to abuse the system. The opposition does not seem to be able to comprehend or understand that. We are here today to talk about Bill C-31 in order to deal with some of those issues. The title of the bill is protecting Canada’s immigration system act, and that is what it would do.
http://openparliament.ca/debates/2012/3/26/david-anderson-3/only/

April 2012 e-bulletin (CCLA)
In this issue:
Bill C-31: Protecting Canadas Legacy as a Humanitarian, Compassionate State
Refugee Rights Day Event (04/04/12 Toronto): Lunch & Learn @ Ryerson re: Unpacking Bill C-31 + Jail Cell Protest
March at the Supreme Court:
Criminal Appeals
R v. Ladue Fairness in Aboriginal Sentencing
Doré v. Bernard Victory for the future and symbolic loss
http://ccla.org/2012/03/30/april-2012-e-bulletin/

Minister Kenney Applauds RCMP for Immigration Fraud Charges (Marketwire)
Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney offered his appreciation today to the Windsor detachment of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) for charges laid against an immigration lawyer and her assistant for allegedly counseling individuals to misrepresent themselves to the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB). In their ongoing efforts to investigate immigration fraud, the RCMP has charged Windsor lawyer Sandra Zaher and her assistant, Diana Al-Masalkhi, for allegedly counseling individuals to make refugee eligibility claims based on fraudulent stories, in violation of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA).
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/minister-kenney-applauds-rcmp-for-immigration-fraud-charges-2012-03-30

POVERTY / HEALTH / HOMELESSNESS / SOCIAL INCLUSION

Federal budget 2012: Ottawa axes National Council on Welfare (Laurie Monsebraaten, Toronto Star)
Anti-poverty groups are shocked, but not surprised, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty axed the National Council of Welfare in Thursdays budget. The independent, federally-appointed body was created by an act of Parliament in 1969 to advise the minster of human resources on poverty in Canada. But since the Harper government was elected in 2006, it has ignored the councils research and advice on how to address growing income disparity across the country, activists say.
http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/1154445–federal-budget-2012-ottawa-axes-national-council-on-welfare

Canadian Social Research Newsletter (Canadian Social Research Links)
Canadian content
1. Bell Media acquires rabble.ca in bid to woo progressive audience – April 1
2. R.I.P. (eff. 04-13): National Council of Welfare – First Nations Statistical Council – National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy (2012 federal budget)
3. Economic Action Plan 2012 : Federal Budget – March 29
4. Ontario Budget – March 27
5. New Brunswick Budget – March 27
6. Canada: NDP picks ex-Liberal minister as federal party leader (World Socialist Web Site) – March 27
7. A More Inclusive and Generous Canada : The 2012 Acceptable Living Level (Winnipeg Harvest & Social Planning Council of Winnipeg) – March 22
8. [Manitoba] 2011 Child and Family Poverty Report Card : The Portrait of Poverty (Social Planning Council of Winnipeg) – March 22
9. [Manitoba] Recommendations for Implementing the Poverty Reduction Strategy Act (Social Planning Council of Winnipeg) – January 2012
10. What’s New in The Daily [Statistics Canada]:
— Payroll employment, earnings and hours, January 2012 – March 30
— Interjurisdictional cases of spousal and child support, 2010/2011 – March 28
— Divorce cases in civil court, 2010/2011 – March 28
— Government Finance Statistics – March 28
11. What’s new from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/personal/news040112.htm

EMPLOYMENT & WORKERS

Ontario construction sector to recruit 120,000 new workers by 2020 (Canada HR Reporter)
To address expansion and replacement demand requirements, the construction industry in Ontario will need to recruit an estimated 120,000 new workers by 2020, according to a recent report by the Construction Sector Council (CSC). Providing enough skilled workers is a high priority at a time when an aging construction workforce and resulting retirements will potentially reduce our labour availability,” said Pat Dillon, business manager of the Building and Construction Trades Council of Ontario. “Industry must maintain the necessary support systems to recruit, train and retain construction workers across the scenario. This support is essential to meet the challenges to replace skilled workers as they retire.
http://www.hrreporter.com/articleview/12643-ontario-construction-sector-to-recruit-120000-new-workers-by-2020

Canadian Construction Association Supports Measures to Eliminate Both the Federal and Infrastructure Deficits (Canadian Construction Association)
The Canadian Construction Association (CCA) was pleased to see the federal government announced a number of measures that will address several longstanding issues of concern to the Canadian construction industry, while affirming its long-term commitment to the renewal of Canadas aging infrastructure. These measures will ensure Canada remains set on a path to future prosperity.
http://www.pr.com/press-release/402107

Why immigrant professionals are still driving cabs (Marni Soupcoff, National Post)
The federal government’s new plan to hire a private firm to assess the educational credentials of potential immigrants is wise. The significance of degrees and professional certificates varies widely and wildly from place to place (country to country and sometimes even city to city) across the world and across disciplines and specialties. The federal bureaucrats who
http://www.nationalpost.com/immigrant+professionals+still+driving+cabs/6395290/story.html

Two new employers to launch mentoring programs with IEC-BC (IEC-BC)
Following the success of a mentoring pilot program with the City of Vancouver, IEC-BC has partnered with Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) and Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to deliver mentoring programs within their respective organizations. 12 mentors from CRA and 7 from RBC have each committed to four-month programs, where they will dedicate 24 hours, over the program duration, to help skilled immigrants with their job-search. Mentors hold key positions within their respective organizations, including management positions in finance, HR and information technology.
http://www.iecbc.ca/about-us/news-and-events/two-new-employers-to-launch-mentoring-programs-iec-bc

IEC-BC to release report based on BC employer consultation (IEC-BC)
From December 2011 to February of this year, IEC-BC met with employers across the province to listen to their needs and solutions regarding hiring and retaining skilled immigrants in their workforces. The findings will be published in the form of a report, inclusive of recommendations for action, which will be released at an upcoming summit, in the Fall of 2012.
http://www.iecbc.ca/about-us/news-and-events/iec-bc-to-release-report-based-bc-employer-consultation

Real Stories: IEC-BC’s Mentoring Program In Action (IEC-BC)
When Kassie Sambaraju arrived in Canada, she was on the outside looking in. She left a comfortable position back home, working in the social development sector, to start anew in an unfamiliar city. Unable to find work comparable to her previous position in Bangalore India, she signed up with IEC-BC’s Mentoring Program to help grow rebuild her professional network. With help from her new mentor, Patrick Tobin, Regional Executive Director at Canadian Heritage, Kassie’s confidence has been restored.
http://www.iecbc.ca/about-us/news-and-events/real-stories-iec-bcs-mentoring-program-action

IEC-BC to launch New Canadian Assessment Resource for employers (IEC-BC)
In April 2012, IEC-BC will be launching a new, innovative resource to help employers more effectively assess the language proficiency, credentials and work experience of immigrant job candidates. Called the New Canadian Assessment Resource, this easy-to-use online resource eliminates the need for navigating through endless links on the subject, offering employers a one-stop source for assessing skilled immigrant job candidates.
http://www.iecbc.ca/about-us/news-and-events/iec-bc-to-launch-new-canadian-assessment-resource-employers

Your skilled immigrant business intelligence a roundup from hireimmigrants.ca (Maytree)
hireimmigrants.ca, provides businesses with the tools and resources they need to better recruit, retain and promote skilled immigrants. The site also profiles good examples and innovative practices of employers across the country. Each week we bring you a round up of the useful resources posted there.
http://maytree.com/blog/2012/03/your-skilled-immigrant-business-intelligence-a-roundup-from-hireimmigrants-ca-2/

Ireland tapped as potential source of labour (Richard Gilbert, Journal of Commerce)
The B.C. Construction Association (BCCA) led a small group of industry leaders from western Canada on a trip to Ireland, in order to examine the apprenticeship training system and facilitate the recruitment of skilled workers. It was a very positive week of meetings from a whole bunch of perspectives, said Manley McLachlan, president of the BCCA.
http://www.journalofcommerce.com/article/id49457/–ireland-tapped-as-potential-source-of-labour

CGA Canada Launches Assessment Tool For Foreign Trained Accountants (Heather Williams, LEAP blog)
Coming from overseas to start an accounting career in Canada comes with many challenges. Deciding whether or not to strive for a Canadian accounting designation and subsequently determining how ones education and experience measure up to exemptions can be confusing and time consuming. CGA Canada has launched a new website, Accountants to Canada, designed specifically for foreign trained accountants new or coming to Canada that are considering the path of obtaining the CGA designation.
http://wp.leapesl.ca/?p=890

CITY OF TORONTO / CITIES / CIVIC ENGAGEMENT

Monday’s Headlines (Spacing Toronto)
A daily round up of mainstream media news on City Hall and Other News.
http://spacingtoronto.ca/2012/04/02/mondays-headlines-230/

SOCIAL INNOVATION / NONPROFITS

New rules in budget create more fear among politically active charities (Paul Waldie, Globe and Mail)
Ross McMillan has a pretty good idea that Finance Minister Jim Flaherty aimed one part of this weeks federal budget squarely at his organization and its partners. Mr. McMillan is chief executive of Tides Canada, a Vancouver-based charity that has been criticized by Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver for funding groups opposed to the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline that would connect British Columbia to the Alberta oil sands. Mr. Oliver has called Tides groups radicals and accused them of hijacking the regulatory hearings for the project.
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/new-rules-in-budget-create-more-fear-among-politically-active-charities/article2388001/

Budget 2012 – If You Are a Charity You Can Breathe Now (Adam Aptowitzer, Drache Aptowitzer)
Anyone that has been following the news over the past few months is well aware that the Conservative government has been concerned about charity involvement in what are loosely termed ‘political activities’. In fact, the concern about charity spending in the area is not limited just to this government as judges have been facing this issue for many years. Fundamentally, the reason that charities cannot engage in political activity is that it would be impossible for a judge to determine if that particular political activity was properly in pursuit of a charitable object. For example, if a charity organized to relieve poverty undertook lobbying activities to change a law it felt relieved poverty, a judge may have to decide whether such a change to the law would actually be charitable. This is an impossible position for a judge and so political activities in general have been struck.
http://www.drache.ca/articles/budgets/budget-2012

Big Changes in the Ability World (Al Etmanski)
The federal government has made PLAN an offer we can’t refuse – to take over the running of the Federal Office of Disability Issues. The Board of PLAN has agreed to the takeover – with two conditions: the majority ofl employees must be based in BC. We will maintain a skeleton office in Ottawa but since BC has been the major source of disability innovation in the past three decades (think Rick Hansen; Sam Sullivan, Jack Collins; Ted Kuntz; Joan Laurence; Barb Goode, Stephanie Cadieux) it makes sense to be headquartered where innovation thrives. the emphasis will shift from advocacy and rights to families and networks.
http://www.aletmanski.com/al-etmanski/2012/04/my-blog-has-been-silent-these-past-two-weeks-because-ive-been-engaged-in-confidential-negotiations-with-the-federal-governmen.html

Governments Incorporate Social Finance & Enterprise Into Budget Agendas (Trish Nixon, Socialfinance.ca)
It is a momentous moment for (government) actuaries and accountants. Today marks the close of the 2011/2012 fiscal year. It is a year in which Canada has seen great momentum in social finance. A series of policy announcements this past week from federal and provincial governments foretell of further progress, and highlight future developments to watch over the coming year.
http://socialfinance.ca/blog/post/governments-incorporate-social-finance-into-budget-agendas

HUMAN TRAFFICKING / MODERN-DAY SLAVERY

Human trafficking merits harsh punishment (Hamilton Spectator)
It is imperative that Canadian courts follow the example of a Hamilton judge in coming down hard on those who traffic in human beings. The buying and selling of humans slavery is abhorrent to Canadians. Our country is a compassionate and welcoming place for those who come from elsewhere seeking a better life, often a life free from fear. We must make it absolutely clear to the rest of the world, particularly those who might view Canada as a good place in which to launch a slave trade business, that we will not tolerate such behaviour in our country. To send that message, our courts must be consistent in dealing harshly with those found to be involved in human trafficking in any way.
http://www.thespec.com/opinion/editorial/article/696632–human-trafficking-merits-harsh-punishment

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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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