Immigration & Diversity news headlines – August 9, 2013


High birthrate among immigrant women has implications for Canada (Douglas Todd, Vancouver Sun)
New immigrants to Canada are much more likely to have babies than their native-born counterparts. Immigrant women who have spent five years in Canada have almost twice as many children of pre-school age (as) the average Canadian-born woman, according to an extensive study by two noted economists. The University of Waterloos Ana Ferrer and Princeton Universitys Alicia Adsera pored over two decades of Statistics Canada census data to reach their conclusion.

New Rules and Procedures for Quebec Immigration and Skilled Workers Program (Yosie Saint-Cyr, slaw)
Under the Canada-Quebec Accord, the province of Quebec has the right to select most immigrants destined to their province. Recently, new rules have been adopted regarding procedures for the processing of certain applications for a Certificat de sélection du Québec submitted by permanent workers, investors, business people and self-employed workers. These changes were published in the Gazette Officielle du Québec on Wednesday, July 17, 2013. These new rules are in effect from August 1, 2013 to March 31, 2014. All applications will be processed according to the new rules in effect as of August 1, 2013, with the exception of those for which processing began prior to that date.

Chamber urges immigrants to Consider Prince George (Prince George Free Press)
The Prince George Chamber of Commerce has launched a new program aimed at attracting skilled workers from the Lower Mainland. Consider Prince George is a community outreach campaign designed to recruit and retain skilled new Canadians and their families from the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island regions of B.C. to the northern capital.

Coquitlam Diversity Crunch Challenge! (Safe Harbour)
Come join us on Saturday, September 7th for the 4th annual Coquitlam Diversity Crunch Challenge! Proceeds will support a Community Diversity Fund to provide grants to Tri-Cities individuals, non-profit organizations, or community groups initiating actions, programs or education aimed at improving integration, participation or access in the community any diversity group(s) identified by the community as being marginalized. Priority will be given to initiatives which benefit the people of Coquitlam.

More babies, please (Rod Lamb, Kenora Kayl Miner and News)
Were seeing this in Europe and the Middle East right now, where youth unemployment is upwards of 50 per cent and young people have no hope for the future. The 2008 recession is still with us. Even the upper middle class have had to curb their spending. So its not just the poor and rest of us who are effected, its everyone. Its the reason our immigration policy on foreigners who are here on work visas, is a lightning rod of discontent. Not that theyre taking jobs, theyre doing the kind of labouring work the average Canadian doesnt want, but they are becoming prisoners in a way of life which is too prosperous for them to return home but doesnt give them the opportunity of becoming citizens and the joys and opportunities that that gives.

Chinese students take in Winnipeg culture at language camp (CBC)
Some students from China are learning English by immersing themselves in everything Winnipeg has to offer, from Folklorama festivities to a baseball game and a trip to the zoo. The 23 students and three instructors are taking part in Red River College’s first-ever language summer camp, which began July 29 and wraps up at the end of this week. The camp is a pilot project at the Winnipeg-based college, which wants to give the Chinese students an opportunity to immerse themselves in the English language and the city for two weeks.

Commentary: Time for Ottawa to show some compassion for U of R students (Vianne Timmons, Leader-Post)
Over the past year, two Nigerian students – Favour Amadi and Victoria Ordu – have taken sanctuary in a church to avoid deportation in hopes of continuing their studies at the University of Regina. In reading about these two young women, you may have wondered why they would spend a year of their lives in hiding. To begin to understand this sacrifice, you need to know their life stories and hear their words.

Real Women attack on Baird a lesson for multicultural Canada: Brender (Natalie Brender, Toronto Star)
Just for a change of pace, heres a news story you did not read about this week: A collective statement by traditionalist Sikh, Muslim and Jewish groups attacking Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird for defending gay rights in Uganda and Russia has produced outraged reactions across Canada. Call-in shows and comment boards are flooded with alarms about the threat to Canadian principles posed by immigrants, and pundit Mark Steyn has warned that Canada is in danger of being taken over by barbaric non-Western cultures. Massive protests are being organized by gay-rights groups on Parliament Hill. Harper government ministers are fanning out across the country denouncing the statement, with Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander declaring that the government would sever all ties with the groups and asserting that Canada must now consider European-style values testing for prospective immigrants. Quebec Premier Pauline Marois has cited the episode as further proof that the rest of Canada is out of step with Quebec values. Meanwhile, academic experts are calling the statement further proof of the dangers posed by Canadian governments propensity to pander to ethnic groups in foreign policy-making. You didnt read about this story because its not true but does it ring a bell somehow? If so, thats because just such a statement was made this week by the conservative group Real Women of Canada, who criticized Baird for imposing a particular agenda on other countries. The group unabashedly links their criticism of Bairds gay-rights activism to their religious and traditional beliefs, with the groups vice-president asserting that she doesnt want other countries to get what we have here where peoples religious values and traditional values are being pushed aside.


New language rules for temporary foreign workers include loophole (Tobi Cohen, Vancouver Desi)
It appears the federal government has included a language loophole for companies seeking to hire temporary foreign workers. After a B.C. mining company came under intense fire for listing Mandarin as a language requirement when it applied for temporary foreign worker permits, the federal government announced in the last budget that it would revamp the rules to prevent employers from mandating foreign language skills to work in Canada. The new regulations, which will take effect once published in the Canada Gazette, state that employment of a foreign national is unlikely to have a positive or neutral effect on the labour market in Canada if the offer of employment requires the ability to communicate in a language other than English or French.

Employers must advertise positions for four weeks before hiring foreign workers as Ottawa toughens temporary worker program (National Post)
More details have emerged about new measures to improve Canadas temporary foreign worker program. The federal government indicated Wednesday that employers are now required to advertise positions in Canada for at least four weeks, instead of two, before they can apply to hire foreigners. They will also have to complete a series of questions related to impacts on the Canadian labour market, and obtain a positive labour market opinion, showing there are no Canadian workers available to do the job, before the government will grant a temporary foreign worker permit.

Temporary foreign worker rules get revamp (Amanda Stephenson, Calgary Herald)
The federal government announced new rules Monday aimed at preventing abuse of Canada’s temporary foreign worker program, but one business group says Alberta employers with legitimate workforce needs will suffer as a result. “The changes that were announced today were entirely a step in the wrong direction,” said Richard Truscott, Alberta director for the Canadian Federation of Independent Business. “The temporary foreign worker program has been a real godsend to small business. It really is unfortunate that the alleged misuse of the program by some big companies and big banks has put it into question for many other employers.”

Diversity Training Shouldnt Be Comfortable (Evelina Silveira, Diversity and Inclusion at Work)
It is only by working through these real-life situations as described above will we make progress in how to deal with them. We need to abandon our political correctness that makes some groups as angels and others as devils. Diversity trainers should challenge themselves to use real-life workplace situations instead of labeling some groups as sacrosanct or untouchable. Creating unrealistic expectations of certain groups is an insult to the groups themselves and to the participants intelligence. Next time, if you leave a diversity training session provoked or uncomfortable that might be a good thing. You should be taken out of your comfort zone with challenging workplace examples that can be used to create balanced and fair solutions for each situation.

Programs help new Canadians access trades (Asian Pacific Post)
The Industry Training Authoritys Immigrants in Trades Training initiative, funded through the Canada British Columbia Labour Market Agreement, helps skilled New Canadians who are unemployed or employed and low-skilled overcome barriers to gaining Canadian certification and entering the trades. The new academic year is fast approaching. Soon thousands of British Columbians will be heading back to school, some of whom will be starting on the path to a career in the trades. Now is the time to become certified in a trade and take advantage of the exciting opportunities that BC has to offer.

Why Seeking Diversity in the Workplace Is a Primitive Concept (Don Tennant, IT Business Edge)
If youre diligently striving to create a diverse workplace by focusing on gender parity and a balanced representation of people from different racial, ethnic, religious and social groups, guess what. Youre languishing in the 1990s, and youre blind to the fact that your approach hasnt worked in decades past, and it certainly isnt going to work now. That was my takeaway from a fascinating discussion with Trevor Wilson, a Canadian global diversity strategist who insists that we need to stop identifying individuals in terms of what group they belong to. Instead, he says, we need to start focusing on those individuals unique talents and strengthsthat is, their human equity. Wilson, who describes himself as biracialhalf black, half Indianhas been immersed in the diversity field for two decades, and his outlook has undergone a dramatic transformation since he wrote his first book on the subject 17 years ago. His most recent book, The Human Equity Advantage: Beyond Diversity to Talent Optimization, encapsulates that new outlook.

CCA open to rolling in Canada Job Grant (Kelly Lapointe, Daily Commercial News)
While it comes as no surprise to the president of the Canadian Construction Association (CCA) that Canadas premiers are concerned about the Canada Job Grant, he welcomes a national strategy to deal with the countrys skilled labour challenges. Were not suggesting that the federal government usurp what is a provincial area of responsibility, but I think theres been a real call and perceived need on the part of a national strategy, said CCA president Michael Atkinson.–cca-open-to-rolling-in-canada-job-grant


A Social Innovators Guide to Systems Thinking (Tim Draimin, Tamarack)
As I wrote in Shifting From Scale to Reach (PDF), an article featured in last months issue of Engage!, individual social innovators are making enormous strides in building valuable innovations that generate meaningful social change. However, in order for those individual initiatives to scale up to achieve deep, broad and durable impact, we need to shift gears to collaborate with others operating in the related system.

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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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