Immigration & Diversity news headlines – July 9, 2012


To ensure prosperity, immigration reform must not halt the flow of newcomers (John Ibbitson, Globe and Mail)
In a triumphalist speech at the Calgary Stampede, Stephen Harper vowed that, as long as Conservatives were left in charge, Canada would be the exception to the developed world’s decade of decline. “I’m determined that Canada will continue to outperform Europe, the United States and Japan,” Mr. Harper said, “that we will not fall into the long-term difficulties that those economies are facing.” Nice to hear. But the Harper government needs to take care that its immigration reforms don’t generate a backlash that could bring about those very difficulties. A recent Ipsos Reid poll shows that 36 per cent of Canadians believe that this country’s high immigration levels are harming the economic recovery.

Grants and Contributions Funding – Settlement and Resettlement (CIC)
In early August 2012, CIC will be issuing a Call for Proposals (CFP) for projects that are local, regional, national and international in scope. The CFP will determine which projects will be funded for 2013 and beyond under the following Grants and Contributions Programs:

Minister Kenney launches new Best Practices in Settlement Services Webpage (CIC)
Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), in response to recommendations made by the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration, has launched a Best Practices in Settlement Services webpage. The purpose of the webpage is to create a single window to feature best practices from a broad range of stakeholders, sectors and disciplines including non-traditional service providers. Submissions for best practices were obtained through a national call to the settlement sector. All submissions were then considered and assessed using criteria developed by a national panel of settlement experts from immigrant-serving organizations and government, and finally categorized under the various activity streams of CIC’s Settlement Program.

Visible minorities under-represented among B.C.’s lawyers, study finds (Christopher Reynolds, Vancouver Sun)
The legal profession is not keeping pace with B.C.’s increasing ethnic diversity, according to a report by the Law Society of B.C. Using numbers from the 2006 census, the report shows that visible minorities constituted only 14.6 per cent of lawyers in B.C. compared with 25.3 per cent in the general population. “What I think this report really addresses is that there are systemic barriers in the profession,” said Thelma O’Grady, chair of equity and diversity at the Law Society of B.C. “Lawyers tend to recruit young lawyers that remind them of themselves, so you sort of get this in-group bias.” In Vancouver, 18 per cent of lawyers were from visible minorities, while the overall minority population was 42 per cent. By 2031, visible minorities are projected to comprise about 60 per cent of the population. The relative lack of diversity can affect recent immigrants, who may need lawyers to communicate in their native language and understand how legal issues might affect them.

Webinar: Healthy Living: Promoting Health and Safety in Immigrant Communities (Cities of Migration)
Learn about innovative health and safety initiatives in Auckland and Vancouver that promote healthy living through clear language and accessible programming that ensures new immigrants and their families are safe, sound, and empowered to seek solutions for their personal well-being.

World economies should look to Canada for success, Stephen Harper says (Lauren Krugel, National Post)
Prime Minister Stephen Harper told a gathering of party supporters that other nations hoping for economic success in the future, must “become what Canada is today.” At his annual Stampede-week barbecue in his Calgary riding, Saturday, he said that the country will not “slip back” under his leadership. Harper said measures his government has taken, such as reforming immigration, expanding trade and streamlining environmental reviews, put Canada in a much stronger position than other traditional economic powerhouses like the United States, Europe and Japan. “New economic powers continue to rise and older ones, ones very much like our own country, continue to struggle. They’re weighed down by debts they can’t control, by entitlements you can no longer afford and growth that shows no signs of returning,” he said.

Language Barriers to Integration: A Canadian Perspective (Albert Galiev, Sepideh Masoodi, University of Calgary)
The Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) program, established in 1992, is a federally funded initiative with the aim of facilitating the social, cultural and economic integration of immigrants and refugees into Canada through language instruction in either English or French. By exploring discourses of 30 immigrant students of English as a Second Language (ESL) regarding their language practices and experiences within and outside the program, the study argues that while immigrants realize the importance of language learning for social and cultural integration through the LINC program, they believe that it is professional accreditation that matters the most. While integration through language learning is mainly seen as the responsibility of immigrants (Evaluation of the LINC Program 7), little research has been done with a focus on immigrants’ own perceptions of integration and their experiences both within the programs being implemented and within the communities into which they are integrating. Existing studies suggest that immigrants’ language learning experiences cannot be fully understood outside of their social and cultural context, and a number of contributing factors which could either hinder or facilitate their language learning and integration should be examined (Derwing and Thomson 44–45).

Second World War not over for would-be Canadian (Peter Worthington, Toronto Sun)
It’s pretty hard to believe that Citizenship Minister Jason Kenney would tell the daughter of a Canadian war veteran in Vancouver that her father, who was born in Canada and had never set foot out of the country until it asked him to go to war, was not, in fact, a Canadian citizen but a British subject. Insulting, degrading … and wrong. This is a theme Kenney and Citizenship and Immigration (CIC) have been pushing for some time. It’s not just a slip of the tongue or a misunderstanding, but a considered view to which the government is apparently committed.

Ahmadi Muslims finding home in Canada (Maryam Shah, Toronto Sun)
“The very first bullet that was fired that day was fired at me.” Zakria Nasrullah Khan is an Ahmadi Muslim from Lahore, Pakistan. He never considered leaving until May 28, 2010. That was the day suicide bombers and gunmen stormed two Ahmadi Muslim mosques in Lahore, killing 86 members of his community, including his father. His son, six at the time, was saved by a cousin who was injured while covering him. Recounting the story, it is clear that the grandson of Pakistan’s first foreign minister Chaudhry Zafarullah Khan is experiencing unwanted emotions as he recalls the day he almost died. The first bullet missed Khan by about an inch. He was part of a group of five security volunteers standing outside. Three were killed, one a childhood friend. Yet he maintains a steady voice, telling his story of persecution and slaughter, one that many Ahmadi Muslims find all too familiar.

90-day delay granted in immigration battle over Bill C-38 (Kendyl Sebesta, Canadian Lawyer)
A 90-day delay has been granted for a group of immigration lawyers fighting to keep their client’s applications intact nearly a week after sweeping changes to Canada’s immigration system came into effect. Quebec law firm Campbell Cohen and Toronto’s Bellissimo Law Group were granted the extension on behalf of their clients, allowing a 90-day delay in the return of their client’s federal skilled worker applications under Bill C-38. The delay follows an action by the group, including Toronto lawyer Lorne Waldman, to stop the Canadian government from wiping out the applications of more than 280,000 people who have been waiting to immigrate to Canada since 2008.

Conman’s Canadian victims speak out after conviction (Jonathan Bell, Royal Gazette)
A fraudster who conned a guest worker out of $14,346 by pretending to be an immigration lawyer was handed a suspended prison sentence, and ordered to pay his victim back. Joel Balfour, a Trinidadian IT worker, told Senior Magistrate Archibald Warner: “This has set me back in my life. I have lost my job, but I was able to come up with 90 percent of the financing.” As his victim looked on, the 42-year-old told Magistrates’ Court that he could pay back $13,000 that same day. Noting that the fraud caused Jamaican guest worker Albert Ricketts “great mental stress, as well as the loss of his savings”, Crown counsel Geoffrey Faiella suggested an immediate custodial sentence of nine to 12 months. The court heard earlier that Balfour created a nonexistent Canadian immigration lawyer named Patrick Ferguson.

New Canadian Immigration Rules May Pave the Way for Simpler Immigration Says Davis Immigration Law Offices (Digital Journal)
Citizenship, Immigration, and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney announced a number of significant changes and updates to the Canadian immigration system on June 28th, 2012 in Calgary. Canadian immigration laywer David Davis says this is welcome news for his clients and aspiring immigrants everywhere. This program “should be welcome news for the trades industry in Manitoba as there is a huge shortage of skilled trades people,” says Davis Of the changes being made, it is anticipated that the Canada Experience Class of immigration applicants will soon only be required to prove one year of work experience rather than the current two years of work experience to qualify for permanent residency. The Canada Experience Class is designed for temporary foreign workers currently working in Canada or foreign students who have graduated in Canada and who wish to apply for permanent residency.

Safe Harbour: Respect for All Story from Mission, B.C. (Safe Harbour)
Sandie Zdunich, who works at the Fraser River Heritage Park, a Safe Harbour Certified Location in Mission, recently helped a woman who was beaten in the Park by strangers. She offered her a glass of water and a place to sit for some time and then took her to the Women’s Resource Society (which is also a Safe Harbour certified location) for extended support. The Safe Harbour training helped Sandie know what to do in the moment. The help and the respect given to the woman moved her so much that next day she came to volunteer at the Park and picked the weeds from the flowers bed for the whole day. Sandie recalls “when I go to visit places in the community and I notice the Safe Harbour sticker or poster, it automatically enhances my respect for that place and the people working there. I feel more confident visiting that place.”


Nobel laureate joins Toronto rabbi group in condemning refugee health cuts (Globe and Mail)
Holocaust survivor and Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel has joined leading members of his Jewish faith in denouncing cuts to the funding of refugee health care introduced by the Conservative government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, which has spent years courting the voters in that community. The challenge to the rollback of health benefits is the latest attack against the measures that were part of a sweeping slate of reforms to Canada’s immigration system. Eight of Canada’s leading health associations have condemned the reductions. Doctors threaten to keep account of the harm done. And the Canadian Medical Association Journal is publishing an article on Monday that will say that the new rules are potentially damaging to the psychiatric health of vulnerable people.

Refugee Health Cutbacks: Canadian Jewish Groups Respond (Or Not) (Big City Lib)
Since the negative consequences of Bill C-31 have become apparent over the last month or so–for example, many refugee claimants will lose access to life-saving drugs such as insulin, and to preventive care–several Jewish organizations have expressed concerns with the law. They have been especially troubled by those sections of it relating to the prevention of illegitimate refugee claims. Designating countries like Hungary as “safe” would make it near impossible for claims from Hungarian Roma to succeed, even though the country is far from safe for this particular minority group. And due to their common experiences of persecution during the 2nd World War, the Jewish and Roma communities have often been thought to share an historical bond. The Toronto Board of Rabbis has spoken out in an open letter to the PM. The Montreal Holocaust Centre has also gone public with its objections. Even noble Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel has stepped into the fray. But what of those groups typically seen as speaking for the Canadian Jewish diaspora as a whole? Well, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) has issued a statement that comes across as both minimalist and mush-mouthed.

The Conservatives repeat themselves (Janet Bagnall, Montreal Gazette)
The government proceeded as it always does. First, denigrate the program: Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney has tirelessly painted the IFH program as little more than a draw for bogus refugee claimants. Free eyeglasses and a round of antibiotics are, apparently, more than enough reason for people to try to sneak into Canada on their flight from war, famine or violence. Kenney labels failed claimants “illegal immigrants.” Second, tell Canadians they are being played for fools: Kenney has done his best to set Canadian citizens against refugees, saying refugees have until now been given better health care than residents, whereas in fact refugees have been given the same level of care as the lowest-income Canadians. Third, when Canadians protest, as virtually the entire medical community in the country has, just tough it out: Call them “militants,” “activists” and “extremists.” Dr. Philip Berger, chief of family and community medicine at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto and a founding member of a group called Canadian Doctors for Refugee Care, says that those are words Kenney has used to describe national medical groups including the Canadian Medical Association, the College of Family Physicians of Canada, the Canadian Federation of Nurses Union, the Canadian College of Physicians, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, the Canadian Psychiatric Association and the Canadian Paediatric Society.

Opposition mounts to refugee health coverage changes (Michelle Lalonde, Montreal Gazette)
More than 800 doctors, nurses, patients and staff at the Montreal Children’s Hospital have signed letters sent to Immigration Minister Jason Kenney Friday expressing opposition to changes that would severely limit health care coverage provided to refugees in Canada. Opposition to the federal government’s move to cut health care funding to refugees – particularly those from countries the minister deems to be usually safe – has been almost unanimous among health care workers across the country. The new policy was to come into effect Saturday, although the Quebec government has announced it will temporarily cover some costs abandoned by the federal government.

Denial of refugee benefits follows a pattern (Janet Bagnall, Times Colonist)
The Harper government is nothing if not predictable in how it goes about dismantling a program or service. It starts by denigrating the program and the program’s beneficiaries, and telling Canadians that they have been played for fools by the beneficiaries. Once that message has been drilled home, and the government judges that the moment is right and Canadians’ attitudes changed, it proceeds to get rid of the program. Examples include the gun registry (accompanied by criticism of the police departments that claimed it was useful) and alternative sentencing programs (with much sneering at justice departments, notably Quebec’s, that believed having sentencing options was good for society). The latest case is the government’s decision to severely curtail or simply eliminate health benefits for refugees, with some slight backtracking last Friday.

Denying medical care to refugees isn’t right (Eva Sajoo, The Province)
Maria left her country in the middle of the night. She and her husband dodged armed patrols to get across the border. They would have been shot if they were discovered. Her husband had only recently been released from detention as a political prisoner, where he was tortured. Soon after their escape, they came as refugees to Canada. They arrived on a ship, with nothing but what they wore, and a very small amount of money they received as part of the resettlement process. They were my grandparents. On June 30, Canada radically altered the way refugees are treated. The department of psychiatry at the University of Toronto states that these new changes to our health-care system “will leave many refugees with less access to care than what they may have received in refugee camps, putting them at risk of developing new onset mental-health problems.”

Doctor crashes announcement (Paul Everest, London Community News)
A London doctor identifying himself as a Palestinian refugee and decrying federal cuts to health care coverage for refugees disrupted a federal funding announcement in London Thursday morning (July 5). As federal Human Resources and Skills Development Minister Diane Finley was about to announce more than $112,000 worth of government grants for the efforts of the London Employment Help Centre (LEHC), Scouts Canada and the London Potters Guild to allow their clients and members with disabilities to participate more fully in each organization’s programs, services and facilities, when Tarek Loubani, 31, stepped forward and interrupted the minister.

ER doctor creates a fuss (Alex Weber, London Free Press)
What was supposed to be a run-of-the-mill funding announcement Thursday quickly turned sour when police were called to remove an emergency room doctor from the London Employment Help Centre. Diane Finley, minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, was at the centre to announce federal government funding for three local organizations to help improve their accessibility. But her remarks were delayed by Dr. Tarek Loubani. Loubani, an emergency room doctor at London Health Sciences Centre, was protesting the Conservative government’s recent changes to refugee health care in Canada.

Why I interrupted the minister (Tarek Loubani, London Free Press)
When federal Human Resources and Skills Development Minister Diane Finley spoke in London on Thursday, I stood and interrupted her in the name of fellow physicians and our refugee patients. Here’s why. The federal government has implemented severe health care cuts for refugees. Under these cuts, it’s possible a refugee having a heart attack would not be covered for treatment. Nor a pregnant woman. Nor a child with a broken arm. The list of common scenarios is only limited by the imagination and is not speculation. The federal government has outlined these very scenarios and has indicated clearly funded care will not be received by some of those in the worst affected categories. The minister asked me to “get all of the facts,” but I know what I’m talking about.

Petition (Jason Kenney’s website)
We, the undersigned, thank Jason Kenney for his efforts to streamline benefits afforded to refugees claimants under the Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP) and bring them in line with the benefits received by tax-paying Canadians, including new Canadians. We don’t think that smuggled migrants and bogus asylum claimants should be getting better health care benefits than Canadian seniors and taxpayers. We think it is important that the government scale back some of the benefits provided to refugee claimants to make sure they get essential basic care and pharmaceuticals that are necessary for public health, but that they don’t get benefits not available to the average Canadian.


Free one-way plane ticket and $2,000: Tory plan pays failed refugee claimants to leave Canada (National Post)
The federal government will give some failed refugee claimants $2,000 and a free one-way plane ticket to expedite their departure from Canada under a new pilot program quietly launched last week. The “Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration pilot program,” run by the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) and the International Organization for Migration, promises failed claimants a voluntary return “with support, dignity and anonymity.” “Should you choose to voluntarily leave, you may qualify for a new government program — the AVRR — that will help you travel to, and make a fresh start in, your home country.”

Bribe or incentive? Refugees offered $2K to go home ? (Metro News)
It’s akin to a bribe, but few will admit to calling it that. Ottawa is offering as much as $2,000 and a one-way plane ticket to any refugee claimant denied asylum who will voluntarily go home. The pilot program was up and running this week in Greater Toronto so the expected number of takers isn’t yet known, but it has created a buzz among lawyers and refugee groups. “It’s a win-win situation,” said Peter Showler, a law professor at the University of Ottawa. Failed applicants go back without losing the ability to return and receive some money to re-establish themselves, while the government gets prompt, trouble-free removal, he said. Efficient removals have long been a sticking point as people may linger for years after their refugee claims have been refused.

Bill C-31: Democracy doesn’t always protect rights (Alice Herscovitch, Louis-philippe Jannard, Montreal Gazette)
On June 28, Bill C-31 took effect, its aim to reform the refugee-protection system. The Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre urges the government to apply these new reforms with extreme caution, given the resurgence of racist and anti-Semitic threats in certain European countries. Among the law’s new measures, of gravest concern is the establishment of a list of designated “safe” countries of origin. This list will allow the government to identify countries deemed unlikely to produce refugees, in part because of their democratically elected governments. Asylum-seekers from these designated countries will be given a shorter period of time for the preparation and judgment of their claims, and will not be entitled to an appeal process. The new two-tiered system leaves these individuals without the same rights and protections available to other refugee claimants.

Bill C-31: I crawled into bed (CJ News)
When Bill C-31 was passed by the Senate, I fell into a deep sadness. I did because I couldn’t understand how men and women elected to lead our country could unanimously decide to deny a place of refuge, and vital medicine, to men, women and children longing for the safety and security we cherish. Bill C-31 implicitly determines that if a Jew persecuted in Hungary, as is happening today, or a Roma who has been attacked and is the victim of what Amnesty International calls (regarding Hungary) “violent and hate crimes” (see this report:, it will still be nearly impossible for them to stay in Canada. Furthermore, when they’re denied refugee status, they won’t be able to appeal the verdict and will be sent back to the place they fled within 45 days, a place where right-wing thugs are openly calling them vermin and bugs.

Refugee ‘safe countries’ list may be ready in months (Daniel Proussalidis, Toronto Sun)
A list of so-called safe countries may be ready by “September at the earliest,” helping Canadian officials deport bogus refugee claimants faster, QMI Agency has learned. The list was part of a raft of immigration and refugee reforms passed into law last month. A well-placed source says the list will likely include the United States and “most, if not all” European Union countries. Safe countries are generally democratic and have strong legal systems, but the primary requirement for a country to be put on Canada’s list is for refugee claims from it to have at least a 75% rejection rate, or a minimum 60% withdrawal or abandonment rate — something seen with claims from Hungary and Mexico, for example.

Failed refugee family holed up in church for a year (Tom Godfrey, Edmonton Sun)
Failed refugee claimants Ilan and Irit Brovman and their two young children have been hiding for more than a year in an east-end church to escape deportation to Israel. Brovman, 42, his wife, Irit, 40, and their children — Tom, 8, and Katrin, 5 — are receiving some support from members of West Hill United Church, where they’ve been holed up in a basement apartment for more than a year. The family shares two comfortable rooms and have many of letters of support from two churches as well as community groups, leaders and politicians. They claim they rarely venture outside since their biggest fear stems from officers from the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) raiding the church and removing them for deportation.

Impossible to stop human smuggling into Canada: expert (News 1130)
No matter how much money and technology we use to catch human smugglers, we cannot stop people from entering Canada illegally. That’s the opinion of a local immigration expert, as Canada Border Services announces its latest case against a human smuggler resulted in a four year sentence. Mikael Prone was arrested in Nov. 2011 at Vancouver International Airport after two passports were found in his carry-on, which investigators later traced to two Iranians who had used them to get on the same plane. Immigration lawyer Richard Kurland points out it’s unusual for smugglers to be arrested on Canadian soil. “It’s the nature of that business. The smugglers tend to be overseas and rarely will entertain entry into Canada,” he notes.–impossible-to-stop-human-smuggling-into-canada-expert

Immigration Detention in Canada (Refugee Research Net)
The Global Detention Project (GDP) is a research initiative that assesses states’ use of detention in response to global migration. Based at the Graduate Institute’s Programme for the Study of Global Migration in Geneva, Switzerland, the GDP’s aims include: (1) providing researchers, advocates, and journalists with a measurable and regularly updated baseline for
analysing the growth and evolution of detention practices and policies; (2) encouraging scholarship in this field of immigration studies; and (3) facilitating accountability and transparency in the treatment of detainees.

Huntley takes another route to stay in Canada (Noelene Barbeau, Independent Newspapers)
Brandon Huntley, who sought refuge in Canada by citing his fear of black South Africans, is gearing up for a new bid after his refugee status was revoked. This time, the former Cape Town man will try to convince Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Board that he will come to harm if he has to return to SA, because the extensive media coverage of his case has placed him in the spotlight. The board’s decision to grant Huntley refugee status in April 2008 received considerable publicity and was criticised as racist by the SA government.

Appointments to the Order of Canada (The Governor General of Canada)
Elizabeth McWeeny, C.M. Thunder Bay, Ont., For her work as a volunteer, advocate and leading Canadian voice on behalf of refugees.


Canadian Social Research Newsletter : July 8, 2012 (Canadian Social Research Links)
Canadian content
1. Stretched Beyond Human Limits: Death By Poverty in First Nations (Canadian Review of Social Policy, issue No. 65-66 – 2011) – June 2012
2. Statistics Canada details program adjustments to meet budgetary savings target – June 27
3. New figures showing static poverty rates mask daily reality of Canadians (Campaign 2000) – June 18
4. Submission by the Canadian Labour Congress to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance Regarding Pooled Registered Pension Plans (PRPPs) – March 2, 2012
5. What’s New in The Daily [Statistics Canada]:
— Labour Force Survey, June 2012 – July 6
6. What’s new from the Childcare Resource and Research Unit


Career Bridge Internships Lead to Full-Time Jobs for Skilled Immigrants (
Since 2003, more than 1,700 skilled immigrants have gained valuable Canadian work experience through Career Edge Organization’s Career Bridge paid internship program. The results? More than 80 per cent of interns have landed full-time employment in their field post-internship. Because of this success, Career Bridge was honoured with the 2011 CBC Toronto Vision Award for Immigrant Inclusion as part of the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council’s Immigrant Success (IS) Award

Thompson man fined $12,000 for illegally hiring Filipinos (Carol Sanders, Winnipeg Free Press)
THE owner of a Thompson gas bar has been fined $12,000 for illegally hiring foreign workers who paid a recruiter thousands of dollars for low-paying jobs in Canada and then were kicked out. Adnan Chaudhary, owner of the Shell station in Thompson, pleaded guilty last week to misrepresentation and illegally hiring the temporary foreign workers.

Activist group calls for greater migrant worker protections (Toronto Star)
Migrant workers in Canada are not only turned back when jobs don’t materialize, they leave empty-handed even though in many cases they have been paying into Employment Insurance, Justicia for Migrant Workers says. When much of Ontario’s apple industry was devastated by frost this year, migrant workers saw their opportunity for employment vanish, said Chris Ramsaroop, organizer with J4MW. “Hundreds of migrant workers have lost work this year. Many were sent home after only a few weeks of work or will not be called up to work in Canada this year. The social safety net is designed to protect workers when there is an economic downturn. Seasonal migrant workers pay into EI but for the most part can’t access benefits . . . We need protections in place so that all workers are supported through this situation,” Ramsaroop said. “Basically we are just sending them home. They are not going to have a pay cheque because there is no work.”–activist-group-calls-for-greater-migrant-worker-protections

Statement of Solidarity with Filipino Migrant Workers and Their Class Action Suit Against Denny’s (Justice for Migrant Workers)
An injury to migrant workers is an injury to all Canadians, especially when their labour rights and standards are violated. We are members and representatives of diverse groups, from faith-based groups, research and academia, service providers, grassroots organizations, migrant workers’ associations to human rights groups, working collectively under the umbrella of the Coalition for Migrant Workers’ Justice (C4MWJ). We sign our names and our organizations to this letter to publicly show our solidarity and support for the Denny’s temporary foreign workers in their fight for justice and for their rights through the class action lawsuit against the large family enterprise, the Northland Properties Corporation, the parent company of Denny’s Restaurants.

Community Call Out: March & Vigil To Commemorate The Hampstead Accident (Justice for Migrant Workers)
Six months have passed since the tragic accident that killed eleven people near Hampstead, Ontario. Amongst the dead were 9 migrant chicken catchers from Peru. The impact of this accident has been felt across the hemisphere as families struggle to cope in the wake of this accident. To commemorate the sixth month anniversary, Justicia for Migrant Workers (J4MW) is organizing a March and Vigil entitled ’Remembering the Dead, Standing up for the Living’. It will take place Sunday July 22, 2012 starting at noon.

2012 WIL Award (WIL Employment Connections)
Gus Kotsiomitis, VP Commercial Banking (London/St. Thomas) for RBC Royal Bank has been recognized by WIL Employment Connections for outstanding community leadership in facilitating the economic integration of immigrants and newcomers in London region. Gus was presented with the 2012 WIL Award at our Annual General Meeting held on June 21, 2012. Nominated by the London Middlesex Immigrant Employment Council (LMIEC), Gus Kotsiomitis was the first regional business leader to step forward and accept an invitation to Chair the LMIEC in 2007. This employer-led initiative has connected hundreds of local businesses and business leaders to Canadian newcomers seeking employment opportunities commensurate with their international training and experience.

Why did we ever issue work visas to sex workers? (Andrea Demeer,
Some business people are a hard sell when it comes to public sympathy. Cigarette manufacturers come to mind, as do owners of sex-trade-related operations. Therefore, it’s hard to get excited watching Canada’s adult entertainment community flex its muscle over last week’s promise by the immigration minister to refuse temporary work visas for foreign strippers, masseuses and escorts. An industry association is considering an appeal of the ban on imported talent, saying all the wrong things and reinforcing the need for such restrictions. There is nothing wrong with sex trade-related work, provided the people doing it are making informed choices and skirting exploitation. That’s an ambitious bar to clear under the best of circumstances.

Workforce utilization of visible and linguistic minorities in Canadian nursing (Stephanie Premji, Josephine B. Etowa, Nursing Management)
Aim This study seeks to develop a diversity profile of the nursing workforce in Canada and its major cities.
Background There is ample evidence of ethnic and linguistic segregation in the Canadian labour market. However, it is unknown if there is equitable representation of visible and linguistic minorities in nursing professions.
Methods We cross-tabulated aggregate data from Statistics Canada’s 2006 Census. Analyses examined the distribution of visible and linguistic minorities, including visible minority sub-groups, among health managers, head nurses, registered nurses, licensed nurses and nurse aides for Canada and major cities as well as by gender.
Results In Canada and its major cities, a pyramidal structure was found whereby visible and linguistic minorities, women in particular, were under-represented in managerial positions and over-represented in lower ranking positions. Blacks and Filipinos were generally well represented across nursing professions; however, other visible minority sub-groups lacked representation.
Conclusions Diversity initiatives at all levels can play a role in promoting better access to and quality of care for minority populations through the increased cultural and linguistic competence of care providers and organizations.

Canadian recruiters seek valley prospects (Mike Perrault, My
Coachella Valley carpenters, electricians, iron workers, plumbers, roofers and other skilled construction tradesmen looking for work could soon find it — north of the border. An innovative program initiated by Riverside County officials aims to link local workers from virtually every trade with Canadian companies facing a shortage of skilled workers. Canadian firms in provinces ranging from Newfoundland and Saskatchewan to British Columbia need skilled workers for major building projects, most of which have already been funded. Most of the jobs offer good pay, such as an average $90 an hour with benefits for a skilled carpenter. Riverside County officials have had at least 10 face-to-face meetings and 40 conference calls with Canadian representatives in recent months to iron out details about immigration requirements, prevailing wages, benefits, taxation and other matters, said Tom Freeman, lead negotiator in the talks and commissioner of the county’s Office of Foreign Trade.

Police vice unit backs foreign worker ban (David Hutton, Star Phoenix)
The head of Saskatoon police’s vice unit says she supports a new ban that stops strip clubs, massage parlours and escort services from bringing foreign temporary workers into the country. But Sgt. Rhonda Ellingboe says it’s not the silver bullet to stop the exploitation of foreign women lured into the sex trade. “They’re trying to stop the exploitation, which is great. But we have found that there are girls who are on visitors passes or are from other countries that even this legislation wouldn’t stop from being exploited,” Ellingboe said. “But it’s a step in the right direction.”

Redefining Diversity For The New Global Workforce (Daniel W. Rasmus, Fast Company)
Traditionally, diversity focused on the integration of people from racial, gender, physical ability and religious perspectives inside of large corporations motivated by political or operational imperative, or social good. The idea was to create a diverse workforce that reflected the composition of the American population in a way that could be seen, one that reflected the diversity of their customers. But America is no longer a walled garden of talent that can be managed and nurtured independently of the global context. As most multinational firms already know, and many smaller firms are beginning to realize, diversity is now a business necessity. Even if a business doesn’t include a strategic imperative for diversity, or any need to offer diversity as a social good; they still need to consider diversity as employee, customer, supplier and partner configurations expands to include people of all races, religions, regions and world views.


Monday’s Headlines (Spacing Toronto)
A daily round up of mainstream media news on Condos, Transportation, Around the city, OneCity, City Hall and Other News.


Are Canadian Nonprofits Too Political? (Rick Cohen, Nonprofit Quarterly)
Ottawa Citizen columnist Dan Gardner has a message for Canadian nonprofits that probably increases the pulse – favorably ­­– of U.S. nonprofit activists such as Tim Delaney and his colleagues at the national Council of Nonprofits and Robert Egger at CForward. Gardner responds to the Harper government’s criticism of charitable involvement in political issues (a charge Harper’s cabinet officers have frequently aimed at environmental nonprofits) by agreeing that here is a problem with charities in politics: “They don’t do it nearly enough.”

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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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