Immigration & Diversity news headlines – June 17, 2014


Event: The Hon. Chris Alexander, Minister, Citizenship and Immigration Canada at CD Howe Lunch (
Please join us for this Roundtable Luncheon with the Hon. Chris Alexander, Minister, Citizenship and Immigration Canada. Register early to ensure you do not miss out.
Toronto Roundtable Event | Friday, September 12, 2014, 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm | C.D. Howe Institute, 67 Yonge Street, Suite 300

Settlement funding–help for refugees and immigrants in Canada has tripled to almost $600 million for 2014-15 (CIC)

Expanded Guidelines for Officers Assessing Work Permit Applications for Intra-Company Transferees with Specialized Knowledge (CIC)
This Operational Bulletin (OB) provides expanded guidance to officers who process work permit applications for Intra-Company Transferees (ICTs) applying under the Specialized Knowledge Labour Market Opinion (LMO) Exemption category. The assessment criteria will now include a more rigorous definition of “specialized knowledge” as well as a mandatory wage requirement for some ICTs. Officers will continue to consider other aspects of Specialized Knowledge as outlined in Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) operational manuals.These new guidelines are effective immediately. Work permit applications for Specialized Knowledge ICTs received from this date forward will be assessed as per the standards and new guidelines contained in this OB.

Bill C-24 would undermine rights to citizenship (Abbas Kassam, Toronto Star)
Bill C-24 would remove decision-making powers on citizenship from independent courts and replace it with the discretion of the immigration minister.

Another view: Weakening Canadian citizenship (The Record)
Citizenship is supposed to mean that every member of a country is equal in all respects. It’s a lifetime entitlement that can never be taken away, unless an individual decides to revoke it in favour of another nationality or committed fraud in obtaining it.

How Canadian are Hong Kong’s 300,000 Chinese-Canadians? (Doug Saunders, The Globe and Mail)
Her parents emigrated from China to Canada. She grew up in Vancouver, speaking Chinese and English, and now she’s moved to Hong Kong, where she’s bought an apartment and is working full-time for a Chinese company.What do you call such people? Some would say they’re fully Chinese, without any Canadian identity, but happen to possess a Canadian passport of convenience. The parents used Vancouver or Toronto as a launch pad to become an “astronaut family” with “satellite kids,” located in Canada but rooted to China. The suggestion that there are thousands of such people, legally Canadian but with no ties, is central to the Harper government’s proposed immigration reforms.

Meet some of Canada’s new citizens as they share their volunteer experiences in an online exhibition (Insitute for Canadian Citizenship)
We’ve officially launched Citizens in Action! Thx for your generous support, and for helping us introduce our country to inspiring new citizens. Can’t wait for our full launch Dec 5.

Ottawa-born man says he has been left stateless by Canada (with video) (Andrew Duffy,
An Ottawa-born man who has served jail time for gun and drug offences has asked a Federal Court judge to declare him a Canadian citizen and end his debilitating episode of statelessness.

Ugandan gay activists granted visas for World Pride (Nicholas Keung, Toronto Star)
Canadian officials have reversed their decision and granted visitor visas to Ugandan delegates to attend a human rights conference during the festival.

From Chinese village girl to Canadian CEO: Cold-FX founder writes her story (Nicholas Keung, Toronto Star)
Jacqueline Shan says good luck and timing play a role, but hard work and resilience are more important factors in an immigrant’s success.

Programs help immigrant youth embrace culture, avoid path to crime (Reid Southwick,
At age 17, Tuan Le was killed with a semi-automatic firearm while sitting in the driver’s seat of a car parked outside a rave in Vancouver. The young gangster’s death sparked retaliation — a member of a rival gang was later shot but not killed in Burnaby — as a violent turf war among Vietnamese thugs escalated.

Diversity at record high at Queen’s Park (Peter Kim,
Ontario reached a milestone last week by electing the most female MPPs in the province’s history. Thirty-nine in total will spend their days at Queen’s Park. Having diversity in the halls of power is good for democracy, according to political science professor Karen Bird, with McMaster University.

The Soccer Fan’s Argument for Immigration Reform (Charles Kenny,
As World Cup competition intensifies in the coming weeks, European soccer fans are going to see a lot of familiar faces on their national teams—and on everyone else’s. A huge proportion of players on national teams from the U.S. to Australia spend most of their year in Europe. But if past competitions are any indication, the free flow of players across borders will create a more equal and exciting competition in Brazil. And therein lies a lesson for global migration on and off the pitch.

Balkan imports hitting big time as Switzerland establish themselves as World Cup regulars (The National)
If Switzerland succeed at the World Cup, a lot of it will have been down to their foreign-born players, such as Xherdan Shaqiri.

Without Immigration, Half of the U.S. World Cup Soccer Team Disappears (Kevin C. Cox,
The U.S. national soccer team plays its first World Cup game on Monday against Ghana. For a country where immigration reform is a such a hot button issue, it’s interesting to note that more than half of the team was born outside the U.S. or have parents who are immigrants.

Hamilton Centre for Civic Inclusion Newsletter


Video: Immigration minister defends government’s record on refugees (The Globe and Mail)
Immigration Minister Chris Alexander says 1,150 of the 1,300 Syrian refugees Canada promised to help are currently in the country

Refugee health care and the power of advocacy (Mark Tyndall, Ottawa Citizen)
It has been two years since the federal government announced major cuts to the Interim Federal Health (IFH) program. This program was designed to provide basic medical care for refugees while they waited to have their paper work processed. If successful with their refugee claim, they would then receive provincial health coverage and if unsuccessful would need to leave Canada.

Protesters against Canada’s cuts to refugee health care vow not to go away (Nicholas Keung, Toronto Star)
Doctors and others wrestle with ethical dilemma of enforcing a discriminatory system that leaves people in dire medical need without coverage — and the broader public’s health at risk.

Advocates denounce treatment of refugees (Carol Sanders, The Winnipeg Free Press)
Canada isn’t the welcoming place it used to be for refugees, say Winnipeg advocates who took part Monday in one of several marches planned in Canadian cities this week.

Docs misleading on refugee health care (Jessica Hume, Toronto Sun)
After a handful of activist doctors arrived on Parliament Hill to decry government cuts to the refugee health program, Immigration Minister Chris Alexander reacted by accusing ’em of misleading the public and Undermining policy.

Refugees denied healthcare in Canada (Robert Devet,
A trip to the doctor or visit to the pharmacy is nothing special to most Canadians, but for many refugees the question of healthcare comes at a much higher cost.

Cuts to refugee care cause suffering, threaten public health and increase costs (Dr. Jane Philpott)
Today is the 3rd annual National Day of Action for Refugee Health. Events have been organized across the country to protest cuts to the Interim Federal Health Program and call on the government to reinstate equitable healthcare coverage for all refugees and refugee claimants. Editorials in major health journals express concern about the effect of these cuts. A court challenge is in place. The Canadian Doctors for Refugee Care have challenged the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration to a public debate. The federal government has ignored requests from the health care community for a discussion about the impact of these cuts.

Media Release-3rd National Day of Action for Refugee Care in Canada (Aids Committee of Ottawa)
The AIDS Committee of Ottawa fully supports the 3rd National Day of Action for Refugee Care in Canada

Refugee Sponsorship Mythbusters (Canadian Lutheran World Relief)
Helping a person or family resettle in Canada after fleeing persecution and violence is a uniquely rewarding way to “welcome the stranger” and put faith into action. However, there are unfortunately many misconceptions about refugees and refugee sponsorship in Canada. We bust some of those myths HERE

World Refugee Day (Windsor Public Library)
June 20 is World Refugee Day. This day was created to honour the courage, strength and determination of women, men and children who are forced to flee their homeland under the threat of persecution, conflict and violence. Help Windsor Public Library celebrate World Refugee Day by learning more about the situation of refugees throughout the world. The following selections are just a few of the many books we house that provide amazing information about the state of refugees across the globe.

Mentoring Refugee Students from Across the World… via Facebook (Michael Atkinson, National Geographic)
Madiha Nasseem smiles as she hops onto Facebook, but she’s not checking out what her friends are sharing on the social network. She’s part of a group that provides mentoring to students… in the refugee camps of Dadaab in Kenya. Tonight she’ll be working with her usual small group of girls who are working hard towards certificates and degrees in one of the world’s most desperate places. “They’re shy,” she says, “but also very welcoming and nice to talk to.” Mentoring is one of several projects conducted by the University of Toronto Refugee Alliance (UTRA), founded by Madiha. UTRA supports the work of refugee organisations, actively involving University of Toronto students. Other projects include helping refugee shelters provide language and clothing assistance, advocating healthcare coverage for local refugees, and more. The mentoring via Facebook is a collaboration with Borderless Higher Education for Refugees (BHER), part of BHER’s new refugee educational program.


Big Ideas: Our mayoral candidates on Toronto’s minimum wage (Toronto Star)
Toronto mayoral hopefuls tell us if they would lobby the province to increase the new minimum wage rate above $11 an hour

Election Forum Puts Temporary Foreign Worker Program in the Spotlight (Digital Journal)
Fort McMurray-Athabasca voters will examine the Temporary Foreign Worker program at a forum on Monday, June 16. At an event organized by the Alberta Federation of Labour, residents of Fort McMurray-Athabasca are invited to share their experiences with how the Temporary Foreign Worker Program has affected the economy and the job market in the region.

Diversity is good for team performance in soccer (Edmund J. Malesky, Sebastian M. Saiegh,Washington Post)
Questions regarding the costs and benefits of diversity for organizational performance affect debates over immigration, university admissions and business hiring decisions. While almost all interlocutors recognize the benefits of diverse talents, perspectives and experiences, there are legitimate questions about the costs that can arise when working groups must negotiate multiple language and cultural roadblocks.


Welcome to our online newsletter containing information about the Institute on Municipal Finance and Governance’s (IMFG) recent and upcoming activities. For more information about the Institute and our past activities, please visit us online. New IMFG Papers – Approaching an Inflection Point in Ontario’s Provincial-Municipal Relations and A Better Local Business Tax: The BVT | Recent Events – Toronto: Looking Forward 2014-2018
IMFG’s 3rd Annual City Manager’s Address

University-based student group offers pro-bono consulting to nonprofit organizations (Charity Village)
University-based student group "VCG-Canada" offers pro-bono consulting to nonprofit and social venture organizations.VCG-Canada was established to offer high quality consulting services to the organizations and ventures that need them free of charge. Our student consulting teams comprise of the best and brightest students who are passionate about helping nonprofit and social venture organization achieve their goals. Our student consultants come from different programs and backgrounds and are rigorously screened to ensure the best fit, talent and commitment for the projects.For more information, or to apply, visit: by June 27, 2014 at 6 pm EST for early consideration or by the final deadline June 30, 2014 at 6 pm EST.

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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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