Immigration & Diversity news headlines – May 3, 2012


Ethnic enclave series: Visible minorities, lively communities (Douglas Todd, Vancouver Sun)
A host of visible minority and ethnic groups has formed into lively communities in different regions of Metro Vancouver, our fast-growing multicultural city of 2.2. million people. Over the past five days, The Vancouver Sun’s ethnic mapping series has profiled the city’s strong Chinese, South Asian, Filipino and English neighbourhoods. Here we continue to point to the locations of the next largest visible-minority and ethnic groups.

Saskatchewan tightening up immigration rules (CBC)
Saskatchewan is tightening up its rules to fast-track immigrants here. The province’s immigrant “nominee” program allowed people who settled here from other countries to apply for unlimited family members to join them. But under changes going into effect immediately, applications for sponsored family members have to be made one at a time, with a waiting period between applications. Another change is that the family member must have a job offer, not just intend to find work in Saskatchewan, as was the previous requirement.

Stricter immigration laws proposed in Saskatchewan (Natalie Geddes, News Talk 650)
Immigration Minister Rob Norris is tightening the rules on Saskatchewan’s immigration programs while at the same time asking the federal government for a greater share of the country’s immigrants. He says the changes are in reaction to some of the ways people have been abusing the system. Bhavna Vora is new to Saskatchewan, originally from India, she moved to the province when her husband got a job. Saskatchewan’s family nominee program had previously had a little less red tap than other provinces, and Bhavna is aware of some of the abuses.

Startup Canada officially launches (Globe and Mail)
A new Canadian organization that aims to celebrate entrepreneurship and identify challenges facing Canadian startups gets its official launch in Ottawa tonight. Startup Canada, which has already started a cross-Canada tour, will get a boost of support tonight as MPs, industry leaders and entrepreneurs come together for the official launch at the University of Ottawa. Startup Canada is the first national entrepreneur-led initiative of its kind. Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird, who will be attending tonight’s event, said in a press release that he was looking forward to throwing his support behind the initiative.

Keeping Boys At School (CBC Metro Morning)
Matt Galloway spoke with Gary Crossdale, the principal at Lord Dufferin Public School about “Stand Up: Redefining the Colour of Success.” The conference brings grade 8 boys from across the city together to participate in workshops led by men of colour. It aims to motivate them to stay in school.

Two Worlds (CBC Metro Morning)
Matt Galloway spoke with filmmaker Nisha Pahuja about her new documentary, “The World Before Her.” The film — which is screening at Hot Docs — illustrates what life is like for two groups of young women living in India. Some are Hindu fundamentalists, others aspiring beauty queens.

Special Treatment for Conrad Black? (CBC Metro Morning)
Matt Galloway spoke with immigration lawyer Joel Sandaluk about the federal government’s decision to allow Conrad Black to return to Canada when he is released from a Florida jail this week. That decision has raised a debate about whether Black — who renounced his Canadian citizenship — is receiving special treatment.

Lawyers weigh in on ‘special treatment’ for Black (Steven Chase, Globe and Mail)
Conrad Black is once again part of an elite club: a foreign national who has secured a permit to live in Canada even before finishing jail time abroad. As The Globe and Mail first reported this week, a request from Lord Black, the former media baron, for a one-year temporary resident permit was approved by the Department of Citizenship and Immigration in March even while he was still jailed in Florida for fraud and obstruction of justice. Canadian immigration lawyers on Wednesday said it’s extraordinarily rare for the federal government to grant the right to reside here to convicted felons while they’re still in prison.

Toronto-area teen shares domestic abuse story (CBC)
A teen in the Greater Toronto Area who has experienced domestic abuse is shining a light on an issue encountered by many new immigrant women, community counsellors say. The teen, whose identity is not being disclosed by CBC in order to protect her, emigrated from India a few years ago with her family. The family keeps to themselves, and the teen is literally kept under lock and key.

FIFA considering sports hijab created by Montreal woman (Ingrid Peritz, Globe and Mail)
The idea for Elham Seyed Javad’s sports hijab was born during the acrimony of Quebec’s reasonable accommodation debate. Now, it could become the debate’s global contribution to soccer. Last month, Ms. Seyed Javad was flown to Zurich, picked up by limousine and driven to a meeting with a soccer executive who happens to be a prince – all part of her bid to be the designer of the first Muslim head scarf sanctioned by FIFA, soccer’s world governing body. The Montrealer’s prototype has already picked up praise, raising the possibility the Canadian-made creation could ease the way for Muslim women to participate in the world’s most popular sport.

Cousin & wife (Sam Littlefair-wallace,
In a team-building exercise, Fadi writes on a piece of paper that he is getting married, and then puts it in a hat with anonymous facts about the other volunteers. Someone pulls Fadi’s piece of paper out of the bag, and tries to guess who wrote it. Fadi remains nonchalant while they make two or three wrong guesses. When the paper gets matched back to Fadi, the group surges with excitement for him. Lisa, who has known Fadi for four years, gets the first question. “So who is she?” she asks, beaming. Fadi responds with pride and excitement, “She’s my cousin.” The room goes silent. A couple people try to stutter a response. They wait for a punch-line. It never comes. The excitement drains from the room. Fadi’s smile is gone, too.

Canada minister: Next Canadian Prime Minister may have Pinoy roots (GMA Network)
As more Filipinos have chosen to make Canada their home in recent years, a Canadian official said it was not impossible that the next Canadian Prime Minister will have Filipino roots. According to a news release of the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), Jason Kenney, Canada’s Minister for Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, “extolled Filipino-Canadians for what they have brought to Canada and recognized the possibility of Canada being led someday by a Prime Minister of Filipino descent.” The DFA said Kenney made the statement during the launching of the “Tinig Pinoy” Internet radio at Parliament Hill last April 27.

Filipino Film Series for Asian Heritage Month (
In celebration of Asian Heritage Month, Toronto Public Library in community partnership with KAPISANAN and Mavshack presents Filipino Film Series.

Asian Heritage Month (The Governor General of Canada)
I am delighted to extend my warmest greetings to all those taking part in celebrations marking Asian Heritage Month. Diversity, one of Canada’s greatest assets, helps to strengthen our society, owing in no small part to so many Canadians of Asian descent. For nearly a quarter of a century, the month of May has provided us with a wonderful opportunity to recognize, discover and further appreciate the richness of Asian traditions and cultures. Congratulations to everyone working to ensure that these marvellous festivities are a success. I wish you all a most enriching month.

Barrie immigration office shutting doors (Laurie Watt,
The Canada immigration centre will close June 1, putting five people out of work and moving services to an as-yet undisclosed location. “Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is restructuring and will streamline by reducing the number of regional offices across the country. CIC will maintain at least one office in each province,” said Barrie MP Patrick Brown. He added Citizenship and Immigration Canada will be working with partners such as Service Canada to maintain or enhance services which require an element of direct contact with clients.–barrie-immigration-office-shutting-doors

Newcomers need face-to-face ( Editorial)
The Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) office in Barrie is closing June 1. Five people are out of work, but the impact will be far greater than that. People dealing with immigration and refugee issues need in-person service. They don’t need to deal with their cases by phone or Internet.–newcomers-need-face-to-face


Canadian Council for Refugees E-Chronicle Vol. 7 #2, 1 May 2012 (CCR)
Update on Bill C-31: Parliamentary committee hears witnesses, local vigils
Changes to healthcare for refugee claimants and protected persons inhumane
On International Workers Day: Migrant Workers in Canada and Discriminatory Treatment
Participate in the CCR Spring Consultation, Fredericton, 31 May – 2 June 2012
Faces of the CCR: Cathy Kolar, Legal Assistance of Windsor
New resources from the CCR
– Updated resources at

Doctor worries federal cuts could harm refugee health (CBC)
An Ottawa doctor worries planned changes to Canada’s federal health program for refugees could leave many seeking emergency care if the provinces don’t step up to the plate. Mark Tyndall, head of infectious diseases at the Ottawa Hospital, was reacting to Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney’s announcement last week that the government will make changes to the Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP), effective June 30, as part of the 2012 budget cuts.

Clergymen who smuggled friend each get $5,000 fines (Karena Walter, Welland Tribune)
Two Toronto clergymen who escaped the horrors of the Congo must each pay a fine of $5,000 for trying to sneak a woman across the Niagara border into Canada in a “misguided” effort to help her. “Thank you so much judge. God bless you,” George Lwamba called out to Judge Joseph Nadel after escaping jail time in sentencing Wednesday. Lwamba and his brother, vice-pastor Lwamba Mbundanini, each pleaded guilty Jan. 10 in St. Catharines court to attempting to aid or abet Clara Gumbo to misrepresent facts under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.

Toronto queer community plans candle light vigil over Bill C31 in Cawthra Park May 5th (Digital Journal)
On Saturday May 5 – Toronto’s gay community plans a candlelight vigil to raise its concerns over the proposed anti-refugee Bill C31 @ Cawthra Park The new proposed law (Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act,) will have a definite impact, particularly on refugees from the LGBT community. Canada recognizes persecution based on sexual orientation as grounds for asylum. The proposed Bill in its current form will affect permanent residents already settle, new residents in process, refugees in process, and new refugees arriving to Canada. (Expected to be law by June 29th.)

Pathways to dementia diagnosis among South Asian Canadians (Dementia, International Journal of Social Research and Practice)
Urban centers are increasingly ethnically diverse. However, some visible minorities are less likely than their majority counterparts to seek and receive services and treatment for dementia. This study explored experiences of South Asian Canadians, Canada’s largest visible minority group, prior to dementia diagnosis. Six persons with dementia and eight of their family carers described their early perceptions of dementia-related changes, actions taken, including help seeking and diagnosis, and affective responses. Early signs were attributed to aging or personality. Even after cognitive enhancers were prescribed, some respondents continued to believe that the dementia symptoms were ‘normal’. Family carers’ affective responses may be related to their attributions. Before seeking medical attention, family carers modified physical or social environments because of symptoms. Help seeking was delayed up to four years, even with significant dementia symptoms. Recognition of a health problem was influenced by safety concerns, emergence of new symptoms following trauma, and treatment for other health problems. For some, relatives living outside the home or outside Canada were instrumental in recognizing a problem and convincing family carers and persons with dementia to seek medical attention. The pathway to diagnosis might be easier with outreach to help South Asian immigrants differentiate between normal aging and dementia. Symptom recognition by physicians treating other acute conditions was a portal to dementia services for others. Screening and referral in acute care could result in earlier diagnosis and treatment.


As poverty gets pushed to the suburbs, so does panhandling (OpenFile Toronto)
While begging in Toronto is traditionally perceived as an urban pursuit where panhandlers can take advantage of busy foot traffic, a combination of factors appears to be driving more and more of them out to the suburbs. Those factors, according to the half-dozen beggars I spoke to through March, include saturation in downtown areas and increased police presence amid gentrification in the city core. Demographic shifts seem to back up their impressions.

May Be Me campaign raises awareness and funds to prevent violence against women and youth (METRAC)
Violence can silence and shut a woman or young person down. What would happen if we all did the opposite? What if we expressed ourselves to stop violence … before it starts? May Be Me is a campaign that raises awareness and funds to prevent violence against women and youth. It’s launched by METRAC, an award-winning charity that prevents violence. This year, proceeds will support METRAC’s prevention programs; in the future, the campaign will grow to support more prevention programs across Ontario. Join and build the movement!

Discovering the hidden poverty (Canmore Leader)
Sharing a meal with Sean Krausert — once you learned of his diet — is certainly not something most Canadians would want to do. Yet, willingly he has been taking on a series of poverty awareness building experiences the past year and is well aware that millions of people throughout the world exist day-to-day with far less. He says, Canmorites don’t have to go very far, but may have to dig a little, to find how close it comes to hitting home.


Eric Rawlinson, Managing Partner, GTA, Ernst & Young: Diversity – Mindsets to Markets (Tina Edan, DiverseCity Toronto)
Eric Rawlinson has been with Ernst & Young for over 20 years. During this time he has applied his skills and talents to various departments, always with an open ear, commitment to facilitating debate and openness to new ways of doing things. For him, business is about innovation – critical to that is differentiating yourself from your competitors.

Four steps to building diversity (Michael Denham, Financial Post)
We have all heard the saying, “great minds think alike.” But in today’s business world, it is not this sameness that will drive your bottom line. The more you embrace diversity, the greater your organization will become. As consultants, we at Accenture have learned that organizations that want to become high performers must embrace diversity. That’s because it is the richness of ideas, backgrounds, and perspectives that create and sustain high-performing organizations. Not doing so may limit your company’s ability to perform, and retain top talent

Foreign workers: Filling job vacancies with care (David Green, Globe and Mail)
The federal government, which has announced a scheme to speed up the processing of temporary foreign workers, is concerned with ongoing reports of job vacancies going unfilled in Western Canada, arguing that the vacancies act as a bottleneck choking off economic growth. In response, it will cut the time to process a temporary foreign worker to 10 days and allow employers to offer a wage that’s as much as 15 per cent below the “going wage” in the local labour market. The policy suggests that either the Harper government didn’t take basic economics or it failed it. At its most basic level, it suggests the government doesn’t understand the laws of supply and demand. To see this, think about a town in northern Alberta where there are 20 carpenters who are typically paid $30 an hour. Suppose that, initially, there is the same number of carpenters as there are jobs offered by firms at that wage. Now suppose that a new oil field project opens nearby and wants to hire five carpenters at this wage. The Harper government’s response is to bring in five temporary workers.

Migrant workers, two-tiered employment, and health inequities (Wellesley Institute)
Ontario has the greatest number of migrant workers of all Canadian provinces, a surprising number of which can be found right here in Toronto. The number of temporary foreign workers in Canada has doubled in the last five years, and how we treat these workers demands a real discussion. Last June the Wellesley Institute released a project with several partners that identified policy changes that are needed to create better jobs for people here in Ontario. As the province with the most migrant workers in the country, better protection for migrant workers was a big piece of that project.

Migrant Workers Alliance denounces Tory policy to pay migrant workers less than Canadian citizens (Canada Newswire)
The Migrant Workers Alliance for Change, an alliance of migrant workers, labour unions and community organizations denounces the latest Tory “jobs-strategy”, paying migrant workers 15% less than Canadian citizens. “In April of 2010, Canada was shocked to hear of the death of 11 migrant workers that died in a car crash when a car driver after working an 11 hour day could no longer pay attention to the road and crashed. Migrant workers allies hoped that this tragedy would force the Conservative government to change its path,” says Kay Manuel, a Live-In Caregiver and member of the Migrant Workers Alliance for Change. “Instead, the government has further concertized the race to the bottom by legislating lower wages for migrant workers that are already being exploited by employers and third parties.”

Remix… Revamp… Relaunch:’s Online Magazine for Job Seekers (Business Review Canada)
Readers probably don’t need to be told that lately, it hasn’t been the easiest finding work across Canada. In Toronto alone, there are close to 140,000 unemployed! Out of the total population of Toronto, nearly 50 per cent are immigrants. The unemployment rate for newcomers is at 19.7 per cent. Numbers of people looking for work while being employed or those secretly hoping to change their careers don’t exist. And there’s just no way to measure how many people are struggling with their résumés and cover letters at home, how many are still terrified of using social media to find jobs. knows that looking for work, looking to upgrade skills, and simply “window-shopping” for new careers is par for the course for most Torontonians. With this in mind, went back to its proverbial drawing board.


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


Engage April 2012 – PDF (Tamarack Institute)
In this issue:
Meg Wheatley – Need for New Leaders is Urgent!
Collective Impact & Shared Measurement
The Risks and Rewards of Collaboration
Adam Kahane, Power and Love
In Conversation with John McKnight & Peter Block
The Bread of Friendship

Update from the MaRS Centre for Impact Investing – May 2012 (Jo Reynolds,
Opened in late 2011, the MaRS Centre for Impact Investing (the Centre) is designed to increase the awareness and effectiveness of social finance by catalyzing new capital, talent and collaborative initiatives to deliver innovative solutions to Canada’s social and environmental challenges. Now that the Centre has been in operation for three months, we are keen to share with the MaRS community our goals and our progress to date.

Toronto incubates new brand of business-charity hybrids (Carol Goar, Toronto Star)
This is time of great ferment in the non-profit sector. Every week or so a new organization pops up that stretches the boundaries of charity, blends altruism with entrepreneurship or shows that community work can be self-financing. Toronto is the hotbed of this activity. To those in the vanguard, it is exciting and creative. To those steeped in the tradition of selfless giving, it is unsettling, even threatening. To the rest of the population, it’s a blur. The social enterprise movement wants to have a voice in the development of the city. It wants to put progressive ideas back on the agenda. And it wants to show political and business leaders that innovation isn’t confined to laboratories, universities and high-tech companies.–toronto-incubates-new-brand-of-business-charity-hybrids

enp Notes (Enterprising Nonprofits)
In this edition…
Social enterprise development grants available from enp. Apply by May 24th.
BC Social Innovation Council releases action plan
BC Ideas – Nominate a community solution, join the conversation!
enp’s spring workshop round (BC) wraps up
Social Impact Bonds… What ?
Resources, events, and opportunities for social enterprises


Manitoba tackles human trafficking (Sun News Network)
Granting protection orders to victims of human trafficking will stop predators in their tracks, the province says. The law, which came into effect Monday, gives child victims of sexual exploitation, or victims of human trafficking, access to protection orders. There is no fee to apply and orders can be made quickly in urgent situations. Most orders last three years, but can be renewed if necessary.

Oakville hosts forum on human trafficking (Inside Halton)
It’s been described as the modern-day slave trade and its practice is not limited to the Third World. Human trafficking is alive and well in Canada despite going largely unnoticed by the public for many years. On Thursday, May 31, the World Evangelical Alliance’s (WEA) Commission on Women’s Concerns and Anti-Human Trafficking Global Task Force will attempt to bring some much-needed awareness to the subject of human trafficking through a day-long meeting titled, ‘What is so human about trafficking?’ And it’s taking place in Oakville.–oakville-hosts-forum-on-human-trafficking

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Communications in social services/social change, immigration, diversity & inclusion in Toronto. Wannabe librarian, interested in nonprofit tech innovation.

Communications in social services/social change, immigration, diversity & inclusion in Toronto. Wannabe librarian, interested in nonprofit tech innovation.

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