Immigration & Diversity news headlines – June 14, 2013


#cdndiversity a new conversation on Twitter (Maytree)
You may have seen it already the Canadian Institute of Diversity and Inclusion (CIDI-ICDI) started using a new hashtag on Twitter: #cdndiversity. We thought it was a great idea. We tweeted it out and suggested that Canadians tweeting about diversity start using it.

Immigration Cost to Countries Is Overstated, Study Finds (David Jolly, New York Times)
Public debate about immigration is being distorted by unfounded concerns over the financial burden that new arrivals put on governments, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development said in a report on Thursday. Across the developed world, the fiscal impact of immigration is close to zero, the organization said in the report, which compares the costs of immigration internationally. The current impact of the cumulative waves of migration that arrived over the past 50 years is just not that large, it added, whether on the positive or negative side.

Multiculturalism: More than Cultural Diversity (Isabelle Lafontaine-Émond, Library of Parliament)
In Canada, one in five people is foreign-born, and more than 200 ethnic origins have been reported. Given this situation, it is interesting to compare the way in which Canadas multiculturalism model manages growing pluralism with how integration models elsewhere in the world do so. Canadian multiculturalism Multiculturalism defines society as a mosaic of communities. It does not provide recognition to the culture of the majority, or founding peoples. Indeed, the Canadian Multiculturalism Act advocates the recognition and appreciation of the diverse cultures of Canadian society, as well as the promotion of the expressions of those cultures.

Diversity reigns among wealthy Canadians (
The study found that two-thirds (67%) are self-made millionaires, making their wealth on their own, while only one-in-five (20%) attribute at least part of their wealth to an inheritance. Additionally, almost half (48%) are either immigrants to Canada (24%), or describe themselves as first-generation Canadians with at least one parent born outside of Canada (24%). Within this group of new Canadians, more than two-thirds (68%) reported that their wealth was self-made. Interestingly, the study found that new Americans account for only one-third of the wealthy in the U.S.

Nearly half of our millionaires are immigrants, new Canadians (CTV)
A new survey finds close to half of the country’s millionaires are either immigrants or first-generation Canadians who made the bulk of their money after their arrival to the country. By comparison, only 20 per cent of respondents attributed at least part of their wealth to an inheritance. The BMO Harris Private Banking survey found that 48 per cent of Canadians with liquid assets of $1 million or more were either immigrants (24 per cent), or first-generation Canadians (24 per cent), meaning they had at least one parent born outside the country. In British Columbia, a full 68 per cent of the millionaires said they were new Canadians.

Video: The new profile of Canadas richest (Business News Network)
Close to half of Canada’s high-net-worth individuals are immigrants or first-generation Canadians, says a new study. The survey conducted for BMO Harris Private Banking found that 48 percent of the country’s affluent – those with investable assets of $1 million or more – are either immigrants (24 percent) or describe themselves as first-generation Canadians with at least one parent born outside the country (24 percent). In the United States, only one-third of the wealthy are either immigrants or first-generation Americans, according to the report. The poll also concluded that 67 percent – or two-thirds – of wealthy Canadians are self-made millionaires, with 20 percent attributing at least part of their wealth to an inheritance.

NDP filibuster would-be bill to strip terrorists of Canadian citizenship (Tobi Cohen,
Furious with the Conservative Party for its attempt to overhaul a private members bill to include provisions to strip Canadian citizenship from convicted terrorists, the NDP has launched a filibuster in whats shaping up to be a He Said, She Said procedural battle. Devinder Shory, the Conservative behind Bill C-425, said the NDP has reached a new low by standing in the way of efforts to protect the safety and security of Canadians and integrity of Canadian citizenship. NDP immigration critic Jinny Sims, meanwhile, said the Conservatives are abusing parliamentary process and usurping private members business to push forward the governments agenda.

Citizenship stripping bill sparks late-night clash at committee (Kady O’Malley, CBC)
As the House continues to meander its way through the government’s legislative priority list, a pitched battle is underway at Citizenship and Immigration over Conservative MP Devinder Shory’s bid to strip citizenship from dual nationals who commit acts of war against Canadian soldiers. At press time, the details of the ongoing dispute are somewhat sketchy, but reports suggest that the opposition parties are attempting to stop the Conservatives from using their majority to extend the existing deadline for sending the bill back to the House by an additional 30 days, which would, in theory, give them sufficient time to incorporate the substance of Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney’s musings on the matter earlier this year by extending it to cover acts of terrorism as well.

Public Citizen: Red tape cut to help Haitian toddlers adoption (Hugh Adami, Ottawa Citizen)
It appears that Smith, the Haitian toddler being adopted by a Kanata couple, will be in Canada sometime in the coming months after all. As recounted in Thursdays Public Citizen, a sponsorship application for permanent residency from the mother-to-be, Sarah Currie, had still not made it to the processing stage by Wednesday even though the papers arrived at Citizenship and Immigration offices in Mississauga on June 4. But late Thursday morning, the department emailed Currie to tell her she meets the requirements to sponsor Smith as a permanent resident.

Let ethnic vote evolve in Canada (Joe Jeerakathil, Star Phoenix)
I sincerely wish that politicians such as Kenney leave the ethnic communities alone. Are these groups considered easier to brainwash and possible prey to the blandishments and promises of a golden era if they vote Conservative? Let minorities evolve. Given time, they will figure out Canada’s political contours. At the same time, there is nothing wrong with political parties seeking support in a whole range of communities. It is highly desirable for parties to appeal to voters simply as citizens, not as hyphenated Canadians. Politicians should refrain from influencing ethnic communities with hyperbolic nonsense. And ethnic communities shouldn’t swallow lock stock and barrel what politicians tell them. Strident political apparatchiks such as Kenney are just politicking when they try to woo their votes.

On the soccer pitch, we are all Sikhs now (John Ivison, National Post)
Soccer player Yiannis Amir, right, with teammates Thomas Plante St-Cyr, left, and Kairbek Mourtazov wear turbans during practice of FC Brossard U14AA on Monday June 10, 2013 at Poly-Arena park in Brossard, Quebec. Pierre Obendrauf / Postmedia News A YouTube video has been circulating among the members of my OldTimers soccer team, entitled: How to tie a turban. The team, based in Chelsea, Que., is planning to don the Sikh headgear to protest the idiocy of the Quebec Soccer Federations turban ban.

Its Team Multiculturalism vs. Team Integration in Quebec (Wayne K. Spear, National Post)
Its slippery on that field where we kick around notions of respect and tolerance. The teams in Quebecs match of the turbans, which Ill call Team Multiculturalism and Team Integration, each make valid points. They are also punting to the stands, not to the actual goal. One side hardly notices that pluralism may obtain within a larger, integrationist framework, an arrangement that would make principled objections to the dastar, rumal and patka superfluous. By principled objections I mean to include only those arguments that address the real issue: multicultural societies must foster social and cultural unity and cohesion, or face the consequences if they do not.

Permanent Residents (CBC Metro Morning)
What would the right to vote mean to permanent residents? This morning Matt Galloway spoke with Subra Balakrishnan, he came to Canada 10 years ago from India, and with Shadi Rezvan. She came here from Iran eight years ago.

Black lawyers win Ontario discrimination appeal (Jeff Gray, Globe and Mail)
The Ontario Court of Appeal has reversed a lower-court ruling and sided with a pair of Toronto-area black lawyers who say they faced racial profiling when they were asked for identification by an employee at a courthouse library. The provinces top court also ordered the Peel Law Association and one of its librarians, Melissa Firth, to pay $30,000 in legal costs as it reinstated $2,000 awards ordered by the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal for lawyers Selwyn Pieters and Brian Noble.

The Growing Linkages Between Migration and Microfinance (Migration Policy Institute)
Yet increasingly, there are threads of discourse linking migration and microfinance. MFIs (sometimes with the support of development institutions) are targeting migrant households for a variety of microfinance services, including loan products. These organizations, as well as some policymakers and academics, view microfinance institutions as ideal actors through which to empower migrant households. Moreover, there is increasing recognition that migration and microfinance have already been interacting in unexpected and sometimes problematic ways. Some households use microcredit as an advance on expected remittances from family members abroad; others use loans to finance the costs of migration. There is also evidence that migration is used as a coping mechanism to manage debt when microenterprises fail, pushing loan recipients abroad in search of better economic opportunity. These connections highlight that linking migration and microfinance has the potential to expand opportunities for migrants and their families, as well as generate or exacerbate vulnerabilities.

Proud Politics (SOY H.E.A.T. (Human rights. Equity. Access. Team))
Proud Politics is working with the Maytree Foundation School4Civics to increase diversity in our political system by increasing the number of elected LGBT officials at all levels of government. We’re gonna be mixing up the tried and true Maytree School4Civics bootcamps with some queer-tastic LGBTQ elements via the Proud Politics team. Here are a few key dates and a general outline of what you could be taking part in! PLEASE SAVE THESE DATES and register where appropriate!


Veteran journalist Peter Goodspeed wins Atkinson Fellowship (Karissa Donkin, Toronto Star)
Veteran journalist Peter Goodspeed will use the year-long Atkinson Fellowship in Public Policy to produce an in-depth series of stories about Canadas refugee system. The fellowship, with a $75,000 stipend and $25,000 research budget, gives a reporter the resources to dig into and write about a public policy issue that matters to Canadians.

Refugee health cuts: 50 prominent Canadians sign declaration demanding an end to suffering (Debra Black, Toronto Star)
About 50 prominent Canadians including Giller Prize winning author Dr. Vincent Lam, Life of Pi author Yann Martel, Margaret Atwood, Rohinton Mistry, Kiefer Sutherland and former Governor General Adrienne Clarkson and her husband John Ralston Saul have signed a declaration asking Ottawa to reverse its cuts to refugee claimants health care. A year ago, Ottawa announced cuts to the Interim Federal Health Program that critics say have left many patients suffering, including sick children and pregnant women fleeing sexual violence.

Refugee family wants to call Canada home (Dominik Kurek, Oakville Beaver)
While a local family failed to successfully tug the heartstrings of immigration officials, a group of students and staff at T.A. Blakelock High School is hoping the deportation of one of their own can be stopped. Im perplexed with how we do things sometimes, said Blakelock construction teacher Leonardo Petti. We have people who get away with murder and they can travel here … and do whatever they want, and here we have some good people and we cant keep them in our country. Its frustrating.

Video: Health Justice Collective (IChannel)
Activist who work in the healthcare field in Montreal form the Health Justice Collective in response to cuts to the Interim Federal Health plan. Dr. Nazila Bettache, Dr. Samir Shaheen-Hussain and nurse Anne-Marie Gallant tell Kevin OKeefe about the hardships they see because of cuts to refugee healthcare.


CBA great way to build our city and neighbourhoods through the Big Move (Evelyn Myrie, Hamilton Spectator)
The Big Move provides a great opportunity for cities to consider ways to create better communities and better social infrastructure, too. As Metrolinx rolls out its regional transportation plan, community leaders in Toronto are pushing for the creation of what is known as a Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) a contract with Metrolinx that would spell out the community benefits of the project.


Practical Ways for an Employer to Maximize International Talent (
Even as were heading into summer vacation, keep HR needs in mind to maintain your companys productivity. Consider these useful tips on how you can maximize immigrant talent, courtesy of the Waterloo Immigration Partnership.

Whatever you call it, discrimination is alive and well in the work place (Grace-edward Galabuzi And Sheila Block, Globe and Mail)
Economist Frances Woolley raises important issues about the term visible minority in a recent Globe Op-ed. She questions its lack of precision and its usefulness as an indicator of labour market discrimination and, therefore, whether it is a legitimate policy objective to try to improve labour market outcomes for people described as visible minorities. Discomfort with the term visible minority is shared by the United Nations. This discomfort is shared even closer to home, by many Canadian scholars and advocates who are also concerned with the visible minority label and its connotations. The difficulties we have in describing or considering race are grounded in its conceptual limitations. As a result, a number of other terms have emerged to describe the set of social and economic experiences that are captured by the concept of race or racialization. We know that race is not a scientific term; there is no biological basis for our ideas about racial differences. We also know that our concepts of race change over time. In the last century, Jewish and Irish were considered to be separate races in North America, just as Black and South Asian are considered to be now.

Controversial Inspection Measures Proposed for Foreign Worker Program (CICS News)
Enhanced inspection regulations for Canadas Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) were announced on Saturday, June 8th. When the proposed regulations take effect, immigration officials will have the right to enter Canadian places of employment without first obtaining a search warrant. The inspection regulations have been proposed in the midst of a nation-wide controversy surrounding Canadas use of temporary foreign workers. Specifically, two highly publicized cases brought to light what may be widespread abuses of the TFWP. In response to public criticism, the government has announced a number of new measures to demonstrate its tough policy towards Canadian employers who refuse to comply with program standards.

Accused wasnt going to discard Filipino nanny like a piece of trash, defence lawyer tells jury (Keith Fraser, The Province)
A man accused of enslaving a Filipino nanny knew that she was in Canada illegally but didnt want to put her out on the street like a piece of trash, the accuseds lawyer said Tuesday. Franco Orr and his wife Nicole Huen have pleaded not guilty to human trafficking charges arising from an allegation they brought Leticia Sarmiento to Canada from Hong Kong under false pretences. Sarmiento has claimed that things went well in Hong Kong but that her life changed dramatically when she arrived in Vancouver and that she was kept in domestic servitude for nearly two years.

Nanny pleaded to come to Canada, trial told (Globe and Mail)
A Filipina nanny who claims she was tricked into coming to Canada on the promise of becoming a permanent resident was told explicitly by a customs agent she could remain in the country for only six months, a human trafficking trial has heard. Franco Orr and his wife, Nicole Huen, are charged with human trafficking for allegedly bringing Leticia Sarmiento to B.C. from Hong Kong and forcing her into domestic servitude. They have pleaded not guilty. The couple says the trip was intended to last only two or three months, after which they would return to Hong Kong and Ms. Sarmiento to the Philippines.


Capital for you to change the world! (Tonya Surman, CSI)
At CSI, we believe that new innovations are the key to turning the environmental, social, cultural and economic challenges we face into opportunities to improve our communities and our planet. We know that early stage social ventures often struggle to raise capital to test and scale their ideas. Well, were all about solutions, and we dont like excuses! Thats why I am so pleased that we were able to announce the launch of the $600K Ontario Catapult Microloan Fund. The first multi sector partnership of its kind, Catapult is a small but mighty fund that is dedicated to supporting early stage social enterprises with loans of $5-25K. Our first investments will be made in September and there will be a total of four investment rounds over the next year as part of this pilot.

Social enterprise – a threat to traditional charity? (Charity Village)
Social enterprise is gaining more and more traction in Australia, following its success in the US and UK but is it a threat to the traditional charity model, asks Daniel Flynn, Managing Director and Co-Founder of Thankyou Water.

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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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