Immigration & Diversity news headlines – July 19, 2013


North York Community House releases new report on Immigrant Entreprenuership (North York Community House)
Findings of this study are based on a review of literature on immigrant needs, and models to support immigrant entrepreneurs, as well as interviews with 100 immigrants entrepreneurs and several service providers in this area. The research indicates that increasingly, immigrants are starting small businesses due to challenges they face finding traditional employment, as well as to supplement their household income. This is a highly diverse group of motivated individuals who require support tailored to their gender, background and previous business experience. Strong mentors and networks are shown to be instrumental supports an important finding for service providers who offer programs designed to help immigrant entrepreneurs succeed.

Education and the art of social justice (CCPA)
The summer 2013 issue of Our Schools/Our Selves finds educators and students who are using dance, music, poetry and illustration to illuminate the act of learning and to open up space for challenging conversations about race, gender, privilege, and fairness.

Operational Bulletin 534-A July 18, 2013 – Guidelines for Individuals Affected by the June 2013 Flooding in Alberta (CIC)
This Operational Bulletin (OB) provides operational instructions to Citizenship and Immigration Canada and Canada Border Services Agency staff on the public policy and procedures for temporary and permanent residents and citizens affected by the June 2013 flooding in Alberta.

Calling all internationally trained journalists in Toronto (PINs)
Do you want to write about mental health issues among newcomers to Canada? New Voices is looking for newcomer journalists to write on this topic for its Fall 2013 issue New Voices is a community-based advocacy magazine of the Mennonite New Life Centre of Toronto. It features articles written by internationally trained journalists living in the Greater Toronto Area. Previous editions have addressed issues such as Poverty, Employment, Social Change, Civic Participation and Canadian Experience, all from a newcomer, immigrant perspective.

Its all white, folks (Julia Leconte, NOW Magazine)
The Polaris pool this year is awfully white. So much so that its caused quite a stir in the media, both south and north of the 49th parallel. I noticed, too. I was thinking about it a lot when the long list came out, but I didnt say anything for a couple of reasons. One, Im not a Polaris Prize juror, and so not privy to the inner workings of how the long list is made and exactly which albums were/are available to vote for. Second, I wondered, was I just being sensitive? I had the same complaint about the Junos telecast there were only white performers. Instead of the mosaic we pride ourselves on, here we were presented with a Kazimir Malevich monochrome. Yawn. Im not arguing theres some great conspiracy in the vanilla mainstream of Canadian media. Actually, maybe I am. Being formerly of the monthly glossy publishing world, where decision-makers openly discuss the fact that people of colour allegedly dont sell magazines (Vanity Fair just had its first black woman on the cover in six years!) I cant believe that those same things arent discussed behind the scenes at television networks.

TD Banks makes $250,000 deposit to support Pier 21 immigration museum (Chronicle Herald)
The Pier 21 immigration museum in Halifax has received a $250,000 donation from TD Bank Group. Immigration is as important to Canadas past as it is to our future. Its made us a culturally rich nation, diverse in thought and experiences, which has helped build and grow businesses and communities, Ed Clark, the banks president and chief executive officer, said in a news release Thursday.

Tonika Morgan: From Street Dreams To Transformative Realities (Samueal Getachew, Huffington Post)
Like Frank O’Dea, Morgan also experienced being homeless with very little education at a young age. Her own shortcomings and circumstances made her angry at herself as well as society. She felt lost and confused. Finding mentors to give her foundation and advice became hard to find. The only option she had was to turn to an area shelter to find refugee and reform her young life. The shelter gave her space to grow and reflect. As she transitioned out of the shelter and went back to school – she also became an eloquent voice to a wealth of young girls and women who were experiencing the many shortcomings of life in the troubled areas of Jane and Finch.

Joining Boards: It’s Not Just Who You Know That Matters (Deborah Bell, Boris Groysberg, Harvard Busines Review)
For many, a corporate directorship is a career capstone. But attaining one is far from easy. No one can say for sure how to get on a corporate board, but many people point to two routes: the first is to break into the “right” network and the second is to seek a progression of board seats that begins with, for example, a seat on a not-for-profit or community board and eventually results in appointment to a corporate board. Both paths are problematic neither is particularly transparent or relies on objective measures and given that many boards are stubborn bastions of white masculinity, pursuing the “right” network can be fraught, especially for women and other diverse candidates. Indeed, our research reinforces that concern: many boards still rely on their own (mostly white, mostly male) networks to fill seats.

The most (and least) culturally diverse countries in the world (Pew Research Center)
Looking for a real multicultural experience? Head to Chad in north-central Africa where 8.6 million residents belong to more than 100 ethnic groups or to Togo, home to 37 tribal groups that speak one of 39 languages and share little in the way of a common culture or history. But if you find a kaleidoscope of cultures distracting, then consider a visit to Argentina, Haiti or the isolated Comoros islands off the southeast coast of Africa. They rank among the least culturally diverse countries in the world. This multicultural map of the world is based on an analysis of data reported in a new study of cultural diversity and economic development by researcher Erkan Gören of the University of Oldenberg in Germany.

Iran Festival (CBC Metro Morning)
One of the largest Iranian arts and culture festivals in the world is happening right here in Toronto. It officially kicks off tonight at Harbourfront Centre.There are lots of people coming to town to take part in the festival. Among them Najmieh Batmanglij .She’s an award-winning cookbook author. Her latest book is called “Food of Life” and she will be giving cooking demonstrations at the festival. She spoke with our guest host Helen Mann.

Scarborough subway: Route makes immigrants, students and poor the losers (Marco Chown Oved, Toronto Star)
As with any transit decision, there are winners and losers. In Scarborough, where city council has decided to scrap plans for an LRT and endorse a subway, new immigrants and lower-income residents stand to bear the brunt of the decision. Demographic data from the 2011 census shows how the seven-stop LRT plan would have run through lower-income neighbourhoods and serviced a greater number of newly arrived immigrants.


Supreme Court to decide on war crime refugee case (CBC)
The Supreme Court of Canada will issue a ruling Friday morning that could redefine how immigration officials decide if someone was complicit in war crimes. The case stems from a decision by the federal government to deny refugee status to Rachidi Ekanza Ezokola. He worked for the government of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) for eight years, four of them as a prominent diplomat at the United Nations.

Roma refugees should be welcomed, not rebuffed (Dow Marmur, Toronto Star)
If there are bogus refugees in Canada, the Roma arent likely to be among them. The latest evidence comes from a report by the United Nations Childrens Fund. It states that the Roma are at great and growing risk in the European countries of their birth. Their rights are being systematically violated through deliberate neglect and persecution. They arent being killed outright, but extreme poverty, social marginalization and countless other forms of discrimination condemn many to a slow death.


Why we have not time for politics (Alex Himelfarb)
Samara recently published yet another study showing that Canadians, especially young Canadians, are profoundly disengaged from formal politics. Not only are citizens voting less and participating less in political parties, they are not writing, reading or even talking with friends about party politics. While many are still donating money and time to causes, they dont have much use for politics. Of course this is not the first such study. With every passing year, we get more evidence that trust in politicians, government and our democratic institutions is in sharp decline. Every election seems to bring a new low in voter turnout and, inevitably, a flurry of opinion on what needs to be done elevate politics, renew democratic institutions, strengthen accountability and transparency, motivate disengaged citizens. And yes, these are all worthy goals but despite the studies, despite all the talk, nothing much changes, things just seem to get worse. Maybe were missing something.


Ontario Award for Leadership in Immigrant Employment (Settlement AtWork)
The Ontario Award for Leadership in Immigrant Employment recognizes individuals and organizations who are forward-thinking champions of immigrant economic integration. They may be employers who recognize the competitive advantage of a diverse workforce or immigrant entrepreneurs who are creating opportunities for themselves and others, contributing to Ontarios globally-connected economy.

Separating TFW facts from fiction and fiction (Jock Finlayson, Ken Peacock, Vancouver Sun)
Canada has a long tradition of attracting immigrants to become permanent residents. Immigration in many ways built the country and did much to stimulate economic growth in the postwar era. The context for international migration, however, is changing. Greater international mobility, instant access to information from around the world, and growing cross-border flows of goods, services and knowledge have all made international migration a possibility for a rising share of the worlds population. The result is an increase in the volume and types of movement of people between jurisdictions. Today, this includes substantial numbers of temporary migrants who come to relatively affluent countries like Canada for work or education.

Temporary Foreign Workers shortchanged (Alberta Federation of Labour)
Temporary Foreign Workers (TFWs) face a greater risk of being the victims of payroll fraud. Information obtained by the Alberta Federation of Labour shows that employers are likelier to violate the Employment Standards Code when theyre dealing with TFWs. Of investigations launched because of a complaint by a TFW, 47 per cent found the employer had contravened the Code. By comparison, the figure was 33 per cent when the complaint came from a Canadian worker.

‘If We Can Be Six In the Apartment, Why Not?’ (Krystle Alarcon,
Richu Binu Vadath, a radiologist, and James Paul, a business management graduate, laughed over what little responsibilities they had in Kerala, India. They never thought they’d barely be making ends meet when they came to Canada. The two men share a room in Riverdale, a neighbourhood of Whitehorse in the Yukon Territories. In total, there are three men in a two-bedroom apartment. And they’re not the only ones cutting costs by living in sardine-can conditions. They’re part of a growing trend of migrant workers in Whitehorse’s service sector industry who have bunked up two to a room to afford housing with their meagre salaries.

Were missing jobs, not skills, Mr. Kenney (Jim Stanford, Globe and Mail)
This weeks cabinet shuffle was probably the first in history unveiled on Twitter. And cabinets most pugnacious tweeter, Jason Kenney (the new Minister of Employment and Social Development), wasted no time going online to map out his coming approach. Within minutes of his appointment, he tweeted, I will work hard to end the paradox of too many people without jobs in an economy that has too many jobs without people. That message spoke volumes about Mr. Kenneys view of the Canadian labour market. The government will continue to play down job creation as an economic priority. Instead, the minister fully accepts the mismatch theory: Namely, that the key challenge is matching up unemployed Canadians with employers anxious to use their services. Help employers find the right workers, in the right place, at the right price, and presto problem solved.

Minimum Wage Panel (CBC Metro Morning)
It’s been three years since the last increase in Ontario’s minimum-wage. Now, the provincial government is looking to change how that wage is determined in the future. It has created a new minimum-wage advisory panel. Helen spoke to Estina Geeten who is currently working two minimum-wage jobs. She’s also part of the Workers’ Action Centre, which advocates for an increase to the minimum-wage. Helen also spoke to Anil Verma who will be chairing that panel.


Five Good Ideas on Why You Should Welcome Complaints – Sept 23 (Maytree)
Complaints can transform service, but few of us know how to handle them well. Too often they are a source of irritation and create defensiveness. But engaging with and valuing the knowledge of service users can generate improvements and better performance. As drivers for cultural change, complaints are a great source of innovation. Turning complaints into compliments and making the most of them are value-adds and ensure the organization remains relevant. Making the most out of complaints is just common sense and a cost-effective way to be cutting edge in service delivery.

Five Good Ideas about Shifting Job Description – Oct 18 (Maytree)

Five Good Ideas about New (Canada and Ontario) Non-profit Corporations Act – Nov 22 (Maytree)

Why you have the best – and the worst – job (Jason Mogus, Communicopia)
The 15 years since the start of online advocacy with NGOs. Internet has been the vanguard of change and new models many times. From fundraising to constituency building, meme-spreading to supporting actual grassroots organizing, the web offers opportunities that orgs doing advocacy, fundraising, social service, volunteer engagement, education, etc have rarely seen in one place. But most is just clicktivism. The core problem: the web is not a technology. Its not ever just a communications or fundraising channel, its your whole organization. Most institutions lack culture, structure, and people to lead in this new world.

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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.

2 Responses to “Immigration & Diversity news headlines – July 19, 2013”

  1. ForHereorToGoMovie says:

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  2. For Here or To Go Movie says:

    Anyone interested in Immigration Entrepreneurship may want to check out our movie, “For Here or To Go?” A new drama/comedy about home and belonging. This heartfelt,endearing film is about culturally displaced, well-educated immigrants bound by America’s immigration laws — trying to assimilate and achieve their American dream. Check out our concept video here:

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