Immigration & Diversity news headlines – August 8, 2012


Cuts to immigration services a big draw back (Dan Maclennan,
A citizenship ceremony in Campbell River last May was a sign of troubles to come for people trying to become Canadian citizens. The ceremony was the last to take place in Campbell River before Citizenship and Immigration Canada shut down 19 regional offices across Canada on June 1 including the Victoria office with nine staff, and a Nanaimo office with two staff. “That’s a real worry,” North Island MLA Claire Trevena – who’d taken the same oath of citizenship 13 years earlier – told the Courier-Islander. “It’s a concern if they’ve closed those offices, if you have to go to Vancouver, if you’re a new immigrant you don’t necessarily have a lot of money. It’s going to make it more difficult or people. It doesn’t really encourage openness. I think it’s a sad day. It really is.”

Cities and Immigrants (Nelson Wiseman, Project Muse)
In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content: A century ago, in 1913, over 400,000 immigrants arrived in Canadaone immigrant for every sixteen residents in the country. In 2012, as in the other years in the past decade, the immigrant influx will be about 250,000 or approximately two-thirds of one percent of the national population. Recent immigrants attract attention because they are overwhelmingly visible and officialdom defines them as such. In their own way, the immigrants of a century ago were visible as wellforeign dress, customs, languages, and diets communicated their visibility. During the Depression, some cities had immigrants who were receiving welfare payments deported. Todays immigrants arrive in a context of public policies designed to aid them. The policy motive for the massive inflow in the early part of the last century was rural settlement in the West; well into the 1920s, the Canadian Pacific Railway aggressively lobbied Ottawa to admit more immigrants from the non-preferred countries of central and eastern Europe because over thirty million acres of vacant land were within fifteen miles of the CPRs rail network, making the railway less viable than it might otherwise have been. Some immigrants in this turn-of-the twentieth century wave also headed for eastern Canadian cities to labour in their then-burgeoning manufacturing sector.

Austria picks up Canadian ideas (Jennifer Campbell, Ottawa Citizen)
When Michael Spindelegger, Austrias current vice-chancellor and foreign minister, came to Canada a few years ago, he returned to Austria full of ideas about immigration and integration, some of which have since become Austrian law. It was a huge success because he had very interesting meetings with (Citizenship and Immigration Minister) Jason Kenney and the then Liberal critic for immigration and he met a number of NGOs, explained Austrian Ambassador Werner Brandstetter on the eve of a visit from Sebastian Kurz, who occupies the countrys newly created position of junior minister for integration. He came home with a number of good ideas, some of which were integrated into Austrian law. The new ministerial position hes officially called the secretary of state for integration was also inspired by what the vice-chancellor saw when he came to Canada.

RCMP Fails to Hit Minority Recruiting Targets (Amy Boughner, Care2)
The Department of National Defence (DND) is failing in the goal to recruit more women and more visible minorities into the forces. DND raised their targets for recruitment in 2010. Their targets are for 25 percent of the force to be made up of women, around 12 percent to be visible minorities and just under 3.5 percent Aboriginals. According to CBC, the forces now have just over 14 percent women, not quite 5 percent visible minorities and 2.12 percent Aboriginals. This is especially problematic since the youngest population of Canadians is Aboriginal and immigration is growing all the time. The Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Defence says they are pushing for these targets because it is important to have the make up of the forces represent the demographics of the country.

That’s History : Next SCC appointment unlikely to redress judicial diversity gap (Phillip Girard, Law Times)
Given the retirement of Supreme Court Justice Marie Deschamps, now is a good time to reflect on the conventions that have characterized appointments to the top court since its creation. In a nutshell, these conventions began with regional, religious (meaning Protestant or Catholic), and ethno-cultural (meaning English or French) representation and then slowly broadened after 1970 to recognize gender and multiculturalism as factors. Ever since the first Supreme Court Act mandated that two of the initial six judges should be from the Quebec bar, there has been an assumption that the court should reflect the regional variation and ethno-cultural makeup of the country. As Canada became more culturally diverse and women came to play a more important role in public life, its not surprising that new conventions have evolved to reshape the court. Region, however, remains the strongest convention in Supreme Court appointments. Aside from the current statutory requirement of three Quebec judges, all of the other conventions are unwritten but remain no less powerful.

Canada to deport man after 32 years in country (AFP)
Canada’s crackdown on immigration fraud has unwittingly snared a Portuguese man living in the country for 32 years who said Tuesday he is being deported over an administrative gaffe. Married to a Canadian woman, Jose Pereira had four children and several grandchildren in Canada and has never committed a crime. Public broadcaster Radio-Canada said his permanent residency card expired two years ago during a trip abroad and a replacement was not processed because Pereira did not reply to a letter asking for more information.

Helping newcomers connect to the land they now call home (Gerard Keledjian, Prepare for Canada)
When Victor Reyes left the Philippines to pursue his Master of Engineering in Australia, he didnt think he will end up in Canada. And just when the idea of staying in Australia started to tempt him, he fell in love with a Canadian, got married and moved to Toronto in 2006. Reyes didnt do any research. When in Toronto, he contacted a credential evaluation service and had his degrees certified. The next logical step would have been having them recognized by a professional body such as the P.Eng.. However, Reyes didnt really look into it, because he had already decided not to practice engineering. Early on, I knew I wanted to work for an environmental non-profit, he says.

Share the Puck program introduces hockey to new Canadians (Prepare for Canada)
Six months ago, Eyob Ketema couldnt wrap his head around the idea of an ice rink, let alone trying to play a sport on an ice surface. But after moving to Ottawa from Ethiopia with his family in February, the 17-year-old quickly learned that hockey was the most popular sport in the area. Ketema was eager to try the new sport for the first time. But with his broken English, lack of equipment and no knowledge of the rules or how to play, the newcomer didnt think hed get a chance to try it. But thanks to Share the Puck, Ketema was able to hit the ice for the first time on Wednesday.

The Expatriate Mind on LoonLounge – Harper’s new foreign worker pilot program revealed (LoonLounge)
In a meeting in Bonnyville-Cold Lake (a provincial electoral district in Alberta), Immigration Minister Jason Kenney outlined the future of Canada’s temporary foreign worker program. One that apparently has nothing to do with immigration opportunities.

The ethnic vote still has no home in PQ ranks (Jonathan Kay, National Post)
When Pauline Marois became leader of the Parti Québécois in 2007, one of her first acts was to introduce an identity act that would ban non-French speakers (including Canadian citizens) from holding public office, or even from petitioning the Quebec legislature. In the rest of Canada, this sort of baldly unconstitutional proposal comes from no-hope third parties. In Quebec, it comes from the official opposition. In the current provincial election campaign, Ms. Marois had a chance to elevate her message. Jean Charest, after all, had opened the door to his opponents by dragging his feet on calling a proper inquiry into the crooked quarters of the provinces construction industry. Ms. Marois might have campaigned on the theme of good government, even if she also mixed in the usual unedifying Harper-bashing and separatist propaganda. But a newly released PQ campaign video suggests Ms. Marois is doubling down on the identity issue. Titled Quelle direction le Québec doit-il prendre? the two-minute ad shows footage of a confident-looking Pauline Marois addressing an unseen audience, interspersed with stock snippets of proud-seeming citizens. For the sake of disparagement, boogeyman images of Jean Charest, Mr. Harper and the Queen also are thrown in.

Rush for help after city office closure (Robert Barron, Times Colonist)
Hilde Schlosar’s worst fears have been realized since the closure of Nanaimo’s Citizen and Immigration Canada office on June 1. Schlosar, executive director of the Central Vancouver Island Muticultural Society, said more than 60 immigrants from the region have visited to the society’s Selby Street office looking for help with their paperwork and other concerns since the office’s closure. Society workers are not trained immigration officers and cannot provide much of the assistance required by the clients, which include aspiring Canadians, temporary workers and international students, Schlosar said. The society is not receiving any additional funding to help deal with the immigrants’ concerns, and staff sometimes spend many hours with each client in an effort to help them with bureaucratic issues. In response to such concerns, Citizen and Immigration Canada has said much of its work can be accomplished by telephone, Internet and mail.

Rachel Blaney accepts prestigious invitation to Conference Board (Courier-Islander)
The Executive Director of the Immigrant Welcome Centre of North Vancouver Island, Rachel Blaney, pictured here, has accepted an invitation to join the Conference Board of Canada’s Leadership Roundtable on Immigration. “We are very pleased that Rachel Blaney has accepted the invitation of this amazing opportunity,” said Diane Bojsza, board chair of the Immigrant Welcome Centre. “It is a compliment to the communities we serve and an acknowledgement of the local leadership and expertise concerning immigration in our rural communities.”

Cricket up and running in North Bay (Ken Pagan, The Nugget)
When Howbasir Ramsoondaar moved to North Bay last year from Trinidad, he began looking for an opportunity to get involved in sports. An inquiry with the North Bay & District Multicultural Centre about the possibility of forming a group to play cricket helped get the ball rolling. Since November, a group of cricket enthusiasts have gathered regularly indoors during the winter at Ecole publique Odyssee and a couple of times per week during spring and summer on the grounds at Vincent Massey Public School. After eight months of informal practice, the North Bay Multicultural Cricket Club played its first official match Saturday, hosting a team from the Sudbury Cricket Club at the Amelia Park ball diamond as part of Summer In The Park activities.

Sikhs have been living in fear of hate crimes since 9/11 (Ritu Bhasin, Globe and Mail)
As a Sikh Canadian, I had a dreaded feeling that one day a Sikh gurdwara somewhere in North America would be terrorized by bloodshed because of hate, fear and ignorance. And as we hear from the media coverage of the Wisconsin shooting, Im not the only North American Sikh who felt this way. Sikhs all over Canada and the United States have been living in fear since 9/11. Because we have brown skin and some Sikh men look like our Muslim brethren with their turbans and beards, hate crimes in our community persist despite our continued advocacy to raise awareness about the racism that we and other communities, like Muslims have experienced post-9/11.


Latest Media and Policy News: 7 August 2012 (ISAC)
Poverty and Policy news around Ontario and nationally.


Where even time-strapped professionals can find time to help newcomers improve their prospects (Yonge Street)
It sounds familiar. You take a seat opposite a stranger, a bell rings and you have 10 minutes to ask questions and to get to know each other. Then the bell rings again and you have to move to your right and try your luck with the next person. The difference is that these aren’t singles searching for a love connection, and the questions they’re asking have nothing to do with feelings. They’re immigrants looking for a career track, not romance. With luck, these 10-minute encounters with possible mentors from some of Canada’s biggest companies will help these skilled new Canadians land their dream jobs. Ada Wong, senior manager of marketing and communications at Accessible Community Counselling and Employment Services (ACCES), admits that the six-year-old speed mentoring program is based on the idea of speed dating. The focus here, though, is on helping ACCES clients find out what job hunting is all about.

Diversity Team (CVIMS)
This website was developed to encourage broad community engagement in creating a welcoming and inclusive community. It is a tool that you can use to explore the diversity in our communities. CVIMS and its community partners want to hear from you so we can continue to improve this site.

We need YOU to act before September 4th 2012, yes that means you! (Eric Brooke, Start Up Visa)
Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is pleased to invite you to participate in an online consultation on how a Canadian investor program can best support Canadian economic priorities. The Economic Action Plan 2012 announced that business immigration programs will be reformed to target more active investment for Canadian growth companies. Additionally, in April 2012, the Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, announced that Citizenship and Immigration (CIC) is considering whether it should use its authority under the amended Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) to create small short-term programs that can have a greater impact on Canadas economy.


Wednesday’s Headlines (Spacing Toronto)
A daily round up of mainstream media news on Garbage, Condo Boom Ford, Cycling and Other News.

Tuesday’s Headlines (Spacing Toronto)
A daily round up of mainstream media news on Development, City Hall Garbage and Other News.


New School for Social Entrepreneurs debuts its fellowship program (Yonge Street)
This month, the School for Social Entrepreneurs Ontario (SSE-O) is choosing 20 students who will join them for their very first nine-month fellowship program. The 20 students will form the inaugural cohort for a new kind of Ontario school, one that favours “action learning” over classroom learning and whose application process favours “drive and values” over educational or career background. Once selected, the 20 SSE-O fellows will participate in a nine-month course that will help them build the resources and connections they need to get their social ventures off the ground.

The following two tabs change content below.


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

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

Leave a Reply

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

Read previous post:
Daily Reads/Micro Thoughts Summary

RT @manish_vij: More terrorism plots in US by white supremacists, right-wing extremists than by Islamists since 9/11. ... RT...