Immigration & Diversity news headlines – September 21, 2012


Fraudsters prey on deportation fears of new Canadians (CBC)
A new phone fraud is targeting new Canadians with threats of deportation unless they hand over money to callers posing as immigration lawyers. The elaborate scam aims to make victims believe they are guilty of immigration fraud and could be expelled from the country if they don’t quickly pay a lawyer to rectify their files. Montrealer Siddharth Kashyap received such a call last week. A software programmer who initially came to Canada as a student, Kashyap officially emigrated from India in 2001 and became a Canadian citizen in 2006.

Taking Business Lessons About Diversity From the Windy City (CBC Metro Morning)
Mayor Rob Ford’s trade mission to Chicago is wrapping up this afternoon. And for the first time in a local trade mission, diversity is on the table. Laura found out why, from Courtney Betty, a lawyer with Miller Canfield.

Toronto Somali communitys cry: Our kids are dying (Toronto Star)
The spate of violence has left the Somali community in Toronto crushed, its leaders desperately seeking answers. They have held meetings throughout the summer to understand why their young men are getting killed and how they can help keep them safe. Theyve asked federal and provincial politicians for more programs and services to help young people get through school and find jobs. They have asked Toronto Police to help. We need help I am not ashamed to say that now, said Mohamed Farah, who works with Midaynta Community Services, an organization that helps Somali-Canadians. There are an estimated 80,000 Somalis in Toronto, another few thousand in Ottawa and, community leaders say, about 3,000 in Fort McMurray, Alta.–toronto-somali-community-s-cry-our-kids-are-dying

Average Canadians suffer from backward immigation policies (Medicine Hat News)
Canada may be in desperate need of highly qualified professionals to join its declining workforce, but if potential immigrants are more than 35 they’re considered too old and their expert experience counts for nothing. The federal skilled worker immigration program is annoying the very professionals Canada needs and the media in the United Kingdom are shouting about it. While anyone applying for immigration used to score points to qualify if they were under the age of 49 they now score points only if they’re under 35. A Canadian immigration lawyer, Michael Niren, told British newspaper The Telegraph there are many skilled people who will be shut out as a result because most applying are in their 40s. What is perhaps most perplexing is the attitude Canadian employers have towards the “foreign experience” these professionals offer.

Studying in North America: Cultural diversity across the pond (Independent UK)
First among them might be the volume of choice available. With over 4,000 institutions in the US and 10,000 degree programmes on offer in Canada it’s hardly surprising that thousands of UK students chose to study across the pond last year (4,500 in the US alone). However, the geographical spread of institutions and the sheer size of both countries also makes it unlikely that those electing to study abroad will find themselves surrounded by Brits.

Multicultural Madness The Fall of British Vancouver and the Rise of Pacific Canada (Ricardo Duchesne, UNB)
Of course, multiculturalism is always presented to the public through rose-tinted glasses as a pluralistic philosophy dedicated to the prevention of discriminatory acts and xenophobic feelings. Immigrants should have the opportunity to celebrate their heritages and religious beliefs as well as being encouraged to see themselves as members of a wider liberal-democratic culture. But multiculturalism contains a negation within its very essence. It protects the group rights of non-Western peoples while simultaneously denying the host (Western) nation any group rights of its own. The host culture is seen as a neutral site characterized by its provision of individual rights, which apply to everyone, and of group rights, which apply only to non-whites. The Anglo-French founders are mandated to be ethnically neutral and historically disinterested; representatives of certain deracinated values that belong to humanity. While multicultural ideologues implicitly recognize that minorities have deep attachment to their ethnic backgrounds, and, in this vein, recognize that humans do have a natural love of their own heritage and ethnicity; they call upon whites to practice historical amnesia and pretend they were not the creators of Canadas institutions, parliamentary traditions, and common law. The historical fact that Canada was built as a nation state around a founding ethnic core must be discarded and hidden from students.

Could It Happen Here? Probably Not, but It Did in Canada! (David North, CIS)
The story both reflects on the courage of the Harper administration in Ottawa, the streamlined nature of some of their enforcement systems, and on the boundless stupidity of one immigration con man in that country.

Two Canadians fear for lives after wrongly linked to anti-Islam film (Joan Bryden, Vancouver Sun)
Two Canadian human-rights activists say they fear for their lives after being wrongly linked to an anti-Muslim film that has sparked riots and protests around the world. Nader Fawzy and Jacques Attalla said Thursday they are among a number of Coptic Christians who Egypt has accused of being involved in the production, distribution or promotion of the film, “Innocence of Muslims.” Both men both deny any link to the film. They told The Canadian Press they’d never heard of the amateurish movie until it began sparking violent protests across the Middle East last week.

Edmonton’s Islamic community to plan protest against racist YouTube video (Catherine Griwkowsky, Edmonton Sun)
Edmontons Islamic community is planning a peaceful protest for Friday in reaction to Islamaphobic YouTube videos. Nawaz Panwar, president of the Edmonton chapter of the Islamic Supreme Council of Canada, said the hate is based on ignorance of the religion. Panwar said non-Muslims are invited to the Friday prayer at 2 p.m. at Markaz-Ul-Islam Masjid, 7907 36 Ave. Islam is a religion of peace and the way this video has been broadcast is so disgusting, Panwar said. So many people not even Muslims they hate this video.

Immigration officer demanded bribes; receives 44 months in prison (Toronto Star)
Sidnei Ramalho feared for his life after receiving an odd call from his immigration officer. Ramalho, 33, came to Canada from Brazil in 2005 to study English and further his computer systems career. When he applied to stay permanently on compassionate and humanitarian grounds, his application was handled by George Gonsalves Barriero, an immigration officer with Citizenship and Immigration Canada who has since pleaded guilty to three counts of breaching the trust of public office.–immigration-officer-demanded-bribes-receives-44-months-in-prison

First Nations consulted on 2013 immigration targets as Tories break new ground (Bruce Cheadle, Winnipeg Free Press)
The Conservative government has wrapped up its consultations on next year’s immigration targets by breaking new ground a precedent-setting sit-down with First Nations. And by meeting with a traditionally disadvantaged group one that has vocally questioned Canada’s generous immigration policy the government may be signalling what’s to come in 2013. Rick Dykstra, the parliamentary secretary to Immigration Minister Jason Kenney, met Thursday with representatives of the Assembly of First Nations and the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples.

Canada’s dwindling birthrate and aging population to hurt economy: expert (Bill Graveland, Canadian Business)
Foot said that although Canada is better educated than Mexico, its NAFTA partner is doing much better with its fertility rate and has a ready supply of new workers for the future. He said Canada’s move toward trying to fast track more immigrant workers to combat the labour shortage is doomed to fail. “If you add immigrants into the mix and look ahead to 2026 … that already has a quarter-million immigrants. I can raise immigration in Canada to 300,000 or 350,000 but it will not change that picture,” said Foot. “Ten million boomers every year are getting a year older. We bring in a quarter-million immigrants. How many years do you have to bring in a quarter-million immigrants? 40 years.” Foot said that aside from taking steps to encourage a higher fertility rate, he doesn’t see the situation changing.–canada-s-dwindling-birthrate-and-aging-population-to-hurt-economy-expert

Video: Doug Saunders | Part 1 | Sept. 18, 2012 | Appel Salon (Toronto Public Library)
Doug Saunders, writer for The Globe and Mail, talks about his book The Myth of the Muslim Tide with National Post’s Jonathan Kay. Moderated by Steve Paikin.


Refugees rally against immigration changes (Jennifer Moreau, The Now News)
Roma-Hungarian refugee families from Coquitlam, Burnaby and New Westminster gathered for a rally Tuesday outside of the federal immigration offices on Georgia Street in Vancouver. “Roma people, Roma families have a big fear to go back to Hungary. Their life is in great danger there,” said Florian Botos, a Burnaby resident who helped organize the rally. The rally attracted mostly Roma refugee families who came to Canada from Hungary. According to Botos, Roma people in Hungary face widespread discrimination and attacks from neo-Nazis, some of which have resulted in death

Refugees find peace and joy in Canada (Meghan Balogh, Napanee Guide)
It was an arrival long-anticipated. Eight refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo arrived in Napanee last week, much to the joy of their family member Mimi Kashira, who has been living in Kingston since 1999. It is overwhelming, she expressed, surrounded by her family. I feel grateful. Grateful to God, grateful to the people of God, that he has used for this to be real. I feel my heart is full of gratitude, that words cannot really express.

Refugee groups want bishops to grill Kenney (Michael Swan, Catholic Register)
When Immigration Minister Jason Kenney walks into a room full of bishops in St. Adéle, Que., Catholic refugee agencies are hoping the minister gets an earful. Five Catholic immigration and refugee organizations in Toronto have written to the bishops asking that they challenge the minister on changes to Canadas refugee and immigration laws. Kenney will address the bishops between Sept. 24 and 28 in a private, off-the-record session at the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops annual plenary meeting.

US Soldier Forced to Leave Canada (ABCNews)
A U.S. soldier who fled to Canada to avoid the war in Iraq has been arrested and detained at the U.S. border after losing her deportation case. Kimberly Rivera, who lived in Canada for five years with her husband and four children, was issued a deportation order last month and given until Sept. 20 to leave the country. The War Resisters Support Campaign said in a statement Thursday that Rivera presented herself at the U.S. border on Thursday and was arrested and transferred to military custody. They said her family crossed separately so her kids wouldn’t see her arrested.


Ottawa tables bill to give EI benefits to parents of sick kids (Globe and Mail)
The federal government has followed through on a promise to help families of gravely ill or injured children. Human Resources Minister Diane Finley announced Thursday that she was tabling legislation to allow parents whose children develop diseases like cancer to collect Employment Insurance benefits for up to 35 weeks.


Program pairs newcomers with business owners (CBC)
The third session of a Greater Moncton Chamber of Commerce program, which pairs new immigrants with business people, kicked off Thursday afternoon. Colin Reeves, a mentor in the program, moved from the United Kingdom to Moncton in 2010. He set up a business that helps British citizens move to the province. Reeves said that even though he came from an English speaking country it wasn’t easy setting up here. “I did the program as a mentee and I’m now helping out as a mentor. I’m helping someone from South Vietnam for the next six months, he said.

Canada heating up as a destination for tech employers (Globe and Mail)
Canadian companies are willing to devote a lot of time and effort sponsoring work visas for immigrants to fill roles that are in high demand, such as people who have governance skills or executive-level advisory experience, in addition to their technical capabilities, he said. Among specialists Randstad has recruited to Canada this year are candidates from New York, England and India who are skilled in Java and also experienced in capital markets. The demand is not just in Ontario but also Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Quebec, said Joanne Boucher, general manager of recruiter Bagg Technology Resources in Toronto.

Gas-and-dash death shines spotlight on vulnerable workers (Prithi Yelaja, CBC)
The tragedy reveals a growing but largely hidden problem, said Denna Ladd, coordinator with the Workers Action Centre. Mr. Prajapatis case reveals how vulnerable workers have very little power or voice in the workplace. We do get lots of calls and people coming in [to the centre] because of this. These kinds of unfair deductions from wages are absolutely happening all the time. According to Ladd, among the most vulnerable are workers in service jobs, such as taxi drivers, restaurant employees and those in the retail sector — those who have access to cash or a till or those who get paid on a so-called honour system, where the customer pays only after consuming the service provided.

“Gas And Dash Theft” (CBC Metro Morning)
Matt Galloway spoke Jim Stonley, he is the co-owner of Corktown Gas Station, and with Deena Ladd. She is a coordinator with the Workers’ Action Centre, an organization that campaigns on behalf of vulnerable workers in the province.

UFCW Canada endorses Metcalf recommendations of status for migrant workers (UFCW)
UFCW Canada, Canada’s leading union and long-time advocate for migrant workers’ rights, endorses the recommendations and agrees with the findings of a new report from the Metcalf Foundation that lays out how current government policy is inadequate in preventing the exploitation and human rights violations of migrant workers in Canada.


Video: Five Good Ideas with Peter Sloly: Public Safety, Service, Trust and Value (Maytree)
Many of us who serve the public face some difficult questions. How can we deliver our services in a digital and global world? How can our services be sustained with shrinking budgets and staffing? How can we ensure that our work is relevant and connected to the communities we serve? There is perhaps no area more relevant to consider these questions than the relationship between our communities and our police services. In this Five Good Ideas session, Deputy Chief Peter Sloly explores the Business of Policing and provides some answers. In particular, he looks at how policing can manage the complex social justice issues of Canadas democracy and how it can engage the full capacity of Torontos youth and diverse communities. This session provides participants with insights, perspectives and the opportunity for direct input into how the business of policing can be more effective, efficient, economical and equitable.

Nonprofits need a strong, unified voice to lobby government, report says (Chronicle of Philanthropy)
Nonprofits need a single organization to spearhead a national advocacy network to champion public policies that help charities and foundations, especially as Washington seems poised to consider an overhaul of the federal tax code, says a new report. A two-year study involving more than 100 interviews with experts and studies of 500 advocacy efforts was released Wednesday by Independent Sector, a coalition of charities and foundations. The report estimated that it would cost $20-million over four years to establish a national organization to push a nonprofit agenda.

Charity watchdog Charity Intelligence Canada has charitable status revoked by CRA (CharityVillage)
Charity Intelligence Canada (Ci), an organization that analyzes the effectiveness of charities in Canada with the aim of helping donors make informed and intelligent giving decisions, recently has been notified by the Canada Revenue Agency that its charitable status would be revoked for failing to meet the annual filing requirements of the Income Tax Act. A notice to this effect was published in the September 15, 2012 edition of the Canada Gazette.

The Mayor’s Community Safety Awards (City of Toronto)
Toronto is a very safe place to live and we are working to keep our city safe. Within Toronto’s communities, individuals, groups, organizations and businesses show leadership in promoting safety and violence prevention and work hard to prevent and reduce crime. The Mayors Community Safety Awards were created to recognize the contributions of five outstanding people and/or groups that help keep our city safe.

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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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