Immigration & Diversity news headlines – March 28, 2013


Canadian Budget Reveals Upcoming Immigration Changes (CICS News)
Last Thursday, the Canadian government released the Economic Action Plan, its budget for 2013. This plan includes a number of immigration measures to be implemented in this fiscal year and beyond. Most notably, the government has announced its intention to enact significant reforms to the Temporary Foreign Worker program, in addition to a number of international initiatives outlined throughout the document. The following is a summary of the budgets notable immigration-related announcements.

#CdnImm Event #13 – Pursuing Further Post-secondary Education in Canada (Settlement AtWork)
Immigrants Going Back to School: How to support and advise migrants wanting to pursue post-secondary studies in Toronto

Event April 19: Peels Diversity and Inclusion Charter Launch (Regional Diversity Roundtable)

2013-2014 Leaders in Residence application is out! (Skills for Change)
We are in search of the next Leaders in Residence to take their own innovative ideas into actions that lead to social change. This is a one-year program that provides a $5,000 start-up stipend to help LIRs in rolling out their projects. Read below and feel free to apply! We will be accepting applications until Monday, April 15 (a fair chance for the brilliant crammers who could really use that extra weekend).

Newcomer Success Stories: Interview With Maali Albalt (Victoria Hetherington, Orange LLP)
An incredibly driven and thoughtful individual, Maali Albalt came to Canada from Dubai only seven months ago, where she worked in management. This week Maali and I discussed strategies for professional newcomers, the nature of happiness, and her new business, a life-coaching service for professional women.

Stephen Harpers Border Road Show (Hans Rollmann, The Independent)
Austerity has a less visible dimension too, and that became readily apparent last week in the controversy that erupted surrounding the federal Conservatives approval to let a reality television program Border Security: Canadas Frontline, now in its second season on the National Geographic Channel film a raid on a Canadian worksite, where they filmed the arrest and interrogation of eight allegedly illegal immigrant workers. By illegal, what is meant is that in at least some of their cases, they were working without having yet received the proper authorization permits to do so (at least one of them was only one day away from completing their immigration sponsorship forms). This is very similar to the many Canadian tourists I know who turn themselves into illegal immigrant workers by busking to earn cash for their hostels while traveling. Or the many Canadian students I know who, while studying abroad, turn themselves into illegal immigrant workers by serving tables to earn a bit of extra cash to supplement their student loans. I even know at least university professor from Canada who recently became an illegal immigrant worker by getting paid for a guest lecture at a university (in violation of the terms of their tourist visa).

Canadas a heaven for those from the developing world (Divya Kaeley, South Asian Generation Next)
Canada is sufficiently liberal and forward looking. But at the same time, acquiring Canadian experience is a must for orientation and induction in the Canadian work system. The Canadian government, however, needs to address the brain waste that some highly qualified immigrants have to undergo for some time before settlement. I am glad the government has taken care of it in the immigration policy announced on 16th of Jan 2013.

Canadian brands target new immigrants with Welcome Pack (Brenda Bouw,, Yahoo! Finance)
Nothing says, Welcome to Canada like a Tim Hortons gift card, a Royal Bank savings account offer and an explanation of the countrys archaic tax system. These are just some of the products new immigrants in the Greater Toronto Area are expected to receive starting this fall as a result of a new marketing initiative created by the folks at Markham-based Dyversity Communications. The WelcomePack Canada program is actually a box filled with gift cards, coupons and products from up to 40 brands. The box which is also designed as a keepsake – will also have handouts offering advice and information for newcomers on everything from establishing a credit rating to the various taxes citizens must pay.

Human Trafficking for Forced Labour Forum (Settlement AtWork)
The forum will focus on persons trafficked internationally for the purposes of forced labour and the barriers to services and protection for these populations.

Diversity In Radio (CBC Metro Morning)
Matt Galloway spoke with Susan Marjetti. She is the Managing Director of CBC Toronto and the Ontario Region.

Another migrant heads home after being nabbed in raid (Jessica Barrett, Vancouver Sun)
Another worker arrested in the high-profile Canada Border Services raid earlier this month is set to be deported. Tulio Renan Avilés Hernandez is scheduled to fly back to Honduras late Wednesday, in compliance with a deportation order issued after he was found at an East Vancouver construction site without permission to work in Canada or legal status to be in the country. The raid on March 13 was filmed for the documentary series Border Security, igniting national controversy and concern about privacy and consent issues of the workers involved and government resources devoted to the show.

Davids Blog: Justice Delayed is Justice Denied (
Citizenship and Immigration Canada is patting itself on the back these days for having reduced the backlog of permanent resident applications by forty percent since its high water mark in 2008. When it comes to the processing of citizenship applications, however, the same government department is far less effusive with self-praise. And with good reason. Not that long ago, a routine citizenship application would move through the system in about one year. Today, the average processing time on a run-of-the-mill application is 23 months even longer in some parts of the country. Keep in mind, the option to apply only arrives after three years of permanent residency status.

Young and faithful (Micah Toub, The Grid TO)
Religion is an integral part of the citys past, and with believers of all stripes continuing to move here, it remains very much a part of its present. Still, when was the last time you brought up God in the public sphere, or in the pub? When you do meet someone at work or at school and, after becoming pals, discover that they are a person of faith, it might surprise you. Maybe even shock you. The loudest voices on the topics of faith are, well, loudand for some, off-putting. So for those who have a less than casual relationship with a supreme beingwho feel grateful to that power as the sun finally warms their face after an overly long winterbelief can carry a stigma. Is there really that much of a gap, though, between you spirited but less spiritually inclined folk and everyday believers? You might seek courageous inspiration by watching The Amazing Race, you may find calm on the ferry ride to Toronto Island, and your community could be the people you hang with at the dog park. For the devout, religious faith brings these comforts, too. Here are six young urbanites who are not only keeping the faiththeyre owning it.


Are you proud to protect refugees? (CCR)
Following recent changes to Canada’s refugee determination system, it may be tougher to protect refugees in Canada. Join us in showing Canadians and the world why we are still proud to protect refugees and refugee rights. The Canadian Council for Refugees is suggesting that refugee advocates and allies find some way to show this publicly under the banner Proud to protect refugees in Canada. Help send a positive message about refugees, in the face of the negative discourse and restrictive changes.

News Release Canada to Welcome 1,000 Additional Bhutanese Refugees (CIC)
Canada will welcome up to 1,000 additional Bhutanese refugees from Nepal, Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney announced today. Canada has a longstanding tradition of assisting refugees and welcomes one in 10 refugees resettled globally, more than almost any other country in the world, said Minister Kenney. We recognize the importance of family reunification in this process, and resettling refugees who already have family in Canada will help them adjust much faster and more easily.

Canada making contingency plans to resettle Syrians, says Immigration Minister Jason Kenney (Tobi Cohen, Edmonton Journal)
Canada is making contingency plans to resettle Syrian refugees should it be asked to do so by the United Nations, Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said Wednesday after announcing it will take in an additional 1,000 Bhutanese refugees from Nepal with ties to Canada over the next two years. A large-scale refugee resettlement is not a desirable option. It just further complicates things, he said of the situation in Syria.

Canada preparing to announce more support for Syrian refugees (Michelle Zilio, ipolitics)
In a phone interview from Geneva, Switzerland Wednesday, ICRC President Peter Maurer told iPolitics he suspects the ICRC will ask donor countries, including Canada, for more support in the coming weeks. He said the organizations October 2012 budget for Syria ran out of money faster than expected, due to overwhelming pressures in the region. Maurer was in Ottawa last week, where he met with Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird, Defence Minister Peter MacKay, Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) officials and the Canadian Red Cross.–o4_t5nGtY&usg=AFQjCNF-_GfUHgHYfbsfwwtYiL0BP0EwbA

In The Field March 24, 26 2013 (CBC Radio)
This week on In The Field, you’ll hear about how First Nations patients were cared for – or not – at the racially segregated hospitals in B.C., and you’ll find out how recent refugees from Bhutan via Nepal are taking care of their families and their future.

Canada to resettle 1,000 more Bhutanese refugees (Tobi Cohen,

Canada will resettle an another 1,000 Bhutanese refugees from Nepal, in addition to the 5,500 refugees from the South Asian country the government has already committed to resettling. Canada has a longstanding tradition of assisting refugees and welcomes one in 10 refugees resettled globally, more than almost any other country in the world, Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said in a news release. He will make the official announcement at a news conference in Ottawa Wednesday afternoon. We recognize the importance of family reunification in this process, and resettling refugees who already have family in Canada will help them adjust much faster and more easily.

JusticE-News : Citizens for Public Justice March newsletter (CPJ)

In This Issue

Whom does the 2013 budget serve?
New: Proud to Protect Refugees campaign
Living Eco-Justice book in the works
May conference on religious discourse and secular society
50th Anniversary: first event a success!
Book launch: The Great Revenue Robbery
Recent Web features
CPJ in the community[UNIQID


Now is the time to tackle Poverty in Ontario (Poverty Free Ontario)
In 2009, all three Ontario political parties voted for legislation to reduce poverty… but things are getting worse. The minimum wage, social assistance rates, and other measures intended to lift Ontarians out of poverty have all fallen farther and farther behind. Despite growing wealth in our Province, it is harder for the poorest residents of our province to pay the rent, keep food on the table, and afford even the most basic necessities. Right now, there is a window of opportunity to turn that around. At Queens Park, all three parties are negotiating what should be in the 2013 Ontario budget expected in April. This is our chance to tell Premier Kathleen Wynne, Tim Hudak, and Andrea Horwath to live up to tackle poverty in Ontario by taking decisive action now.

Toronto ombudsman says city owes non-profits an apology for unjustified rent increases (David Rockne Corrigan, Globe and Mail)
A new report by Torontos ombudsman says city staff hiked rents for several non-profit organizations by as much as 550 per cent without justifying the increases. Fiona Creans report looks into the citys Below-Market-Rent (BMR) program, which allows non-profit community groups to lease space from the city at a reduced cost.


The results are in: Mentoring improves employment outcomes for skilled immigrants (ALLIES)
Mentoring helps newcomers find jobs that match their skills and talent. Thanks to a new ALLIES-Accenture report, we now have the evidence to confirm the positive impact of mentoring on newcomers and our economy.

Mentoring reduces immigrant unemployment, boosts earnings (Nicholas Keung, Toronto Star)
Matching skilled immigrants with Canadians in the same fields helps newcomers build professional networks and boost their career prospects, a new study finds. According to the pro-bono study by Accenture, a business consulting company, immigrant participants in job-mentoring programs saw their unemployment rate drop from 73 per cent to 19 per cent a year after completing the program. Their average annual full-time earnings also increased by 62 per cent, from $36,905 to $59,944, said the report released Wednesday by ALLIES, Assisting Local Leaders with Immigrant Employment Strategies.

Applying to become a Mentee Is a mentoring relationship worth it? (ERIEC)
Its wonderful to know that many skilled immigrant professionals have benefited from our different programs. When we receive an online application from a skilled immigrant who has decided to become a mentee in our CareerMentorshipProgram, we really do get EXCITED! Why such a fuss? Well, first of all, we are thrilled that someone has chosen this particular path to career success and want to connect to their profession here in Canada. Secondly, these applicants realize that they need the support of a local professional in their field, a mentor, who can show them the ropes.

London Hydro Diversity Report 2012 – PDF (London Hydro)
With their community statement Powering London. Empowering You. its no surprise that London Hydro has proactive human resource practices. Their notion of empowering you reaches into both the community and their organization. For London Hydro, this statement means recognizing and supporting a wide variety of cultural backgrounds and perspectives in their work environment as a reflection of the changing diversity of the community which it serves.

Boom in temporary migrant workers creates vulnerable workforce and increases inequality (Anelyse Weiler,
In 2013, for the first time in Canadian history, retirees will outnumber young people entering the workforce. Immigration is a sensible way to offset population shrinkage and economic decline and, for decades, federal programs have invited new workers to settle in Canada for precisely that reason. But now, on the cusp of Canadas baby bust, a migrant workers boom is underway. Since 2006, the number of guest workers has surpassed that of economic immigrants who can become permanent residents and ultimately Canadian citizens. This policy shift not only increases the vulnerability of these workers, but also undermines wages and conditions for all workers in Canada.

Award ceremony to honour savvy GTA employers tapping the skilled immigrant talent pool (Canada Newswire)
On April 3, the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC) and RBC will honour leading GTA organizations for their leadership in recruiting and retaining skilled immigrants at the 7th Annual Immigrant Success (IS) Awards. Tapping this important talent pool is critical to innovation, and the award ceremony will honour three organizations and one individual who serve as excellent examples for other organizations and businesses to follow.


Torontos Urbanism Headlines: Thursday (Spacing Toronto)
A daily round up of mainstream media news on TTC, Toronto Casino, Rob Ford, Police and Other News.

Promises Made, Promises Broken: An Investigation into the City’s Below Market Rent Program (Toronto Ombudsman)
The City of Toronto Ombudsman, Fiona Crean, says two City divisions failed to provide proper service to a group of six community agencies. Crean today released Promises Made, Promises Broken, the report of an investigation into the application of the City of Torontos Below-Market-Rent (BMR) program. The policy allows non-profit community groups to lease space from the City at a below market rate, as long as the Citys costs are covered. In return, these agencies deliver important programs to Toronto residents at a lower cost than the City could provide. These non-profit agencies were treated very badly, says Crean. Staff from the Citys Real Estate and Facilities divisions gave them widely varying estimates of pending rate hikes, never provided the increases in writing, failed to explain or justify the increases, and invoked harsher terms than those given to other agencies. The six community agencies were met with a litany of failures by City employees, says the Ombudsman. “Staff repeatedly broke their promises and commitments to the agencies.”

SPT Soundbites e-bulletin March 27, 2013 (Social Planning Toronto)

1. 2013 Frances Lankin Community Service Awards
2. When City Hall Doesnt Work for You Torontos Ombudsman
3. Poverty Free Ontario Petition Campaign Launched
4. 25 in 5 Network for Poverty Reduction Pre-Budget Actions
5. It All Begins with SPACE April 25, 2013
6. Worth Repeating: Poverty Free Ontarios Six Point Plan for Action
7. News from our Partner

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

Shared 14 links. CERIS Use sketchnotes and graphic recording to spread your speech’s messageRob Cottingham RT @jaredbkeller: Your use of...