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Canada badly needs skilled immigrants

The best immigration policy is controlled immigration. That has been the practice of successive Canadian governments since the end of the Second World War.

Immigration alone can’t solve the epidemic of Canada’s low fertility rate. It has never been designed to solve inherently local social problems.

Canada’s aging population is just at the beginning of its ascendency. Just imagine what Canada would look like without the 250,000 to 260,000 immigrants that it is getting each year.

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business released a study in 2007 saying: “Sixty-nine per cent of small businesses expect the shortage of labour to get worse, but the immigration system does not come close to meeting the needs of smaller firms.” Furthermore, by 2012 all labour growth in Canada will be dependent entirely on immigration.

In fact, in 2008 the government introduced a new category for immigrants called the Canadian experience class. It targets specifically international graduates and foreign workers already in Canada who most likely acquired language skills and basic knowledge of the country. We badly need these doctors, IT specialists, engineers, retail workers and general labourers in all trades.

The government is caught between a rock and a hard place: On one side, the business community keep lobbying and pushing for an immigration system that is adaptive and reflective of the economy’s needs.

And, on the other side, demographers of all stripes and social conservatives are telling the government that immigration is not a solution and may well become a problem down the road.

By as early as 2015, a recent study by Statistics Canada predicts, Canadians aged 65 and older will, for the first time, outnumber those aged 15 and younger.

Immigration alone cannot change a demographic makeup of a country in one or two generations.

Columnist Dan Gardner is right in sending the message that producing babies, changing social habits and culture are more important and urgent than depending on foreign help to solve indigenous calamity that is heading our way. He is as thoughtful, elegant and well-prepared as ever.

Elie Nasrallah,

Source: The Ottawa Citizen

Ottawa to unveil proposals to reform refugee system

By Norma Greenaway, Canwest News ServiceMarch 28, 2010

Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Ottawa+unveil+proposals+reform+refugee+system/2737289/story.html#ixzz0jXKTE3Hl

OTTAWA — Immigration Minister Jason Kenney will unveil long-awaited proposals to reform Canada’s refugee system this week in what he has portrayed as a serious bid to speed the approval process for legitimate asylum-seekers while clamping down on abuse of the system.

Kenney plans a two-day roll out of the proposed initiatives, beginning Monday at a news conference at the Catholic Immigration Centre in Ottawa. On Tuesday, he is expected to introduce the legislative package to implement the changes, his office said Sunday.

Among other things, the package is expected to speed the initial handling of refugee applications by using trained federal civil servants to do the initial assessment, as opposed to the current system where applications are heard by a one-man refugee board. It would be part of a new system to fast-track applications from a list of so-called “safe” countries where human and democratic rights are deemed to be honoured.

Officials say the new system would still provide asylum from such “safe” countries to citizens who can demonstrate they are persecuted. They say the government has taken into account that women, gays and lesbians and other minorities can face persecution even in democracies.

The “safe” country idea is among the most controversial of the measures that will likely be proposed this week. The Liberals have indicated they are open to the idea, but the New Democrats and Bloc Quebecois are opposed.

The reform package is likely to generate fierce debate in the minority Parliament and across the country, with several refugee organizations vowing to dig in to keep the system as open and fair as possible. One of the big questions hanging over Kenney’s head is how much money the government is willing to earmark for the changes, including a stepped up effort by the Canada Border Services Agency to make sure rejected claimants are removed quickly from Canada.

Kenney has said the government is determined to come up with a system that will speed the 18 to 20 months it now takes for asylum claims to be heard, thereby reducing the 60,000 backlog in claimants still waiting to get their day before the Immigration and Refugee Board. The legislation will still allow claimants to resort to the courts if the board rejects their claim, but it is expected to reduce some of the appeals avenues.

The legislation caps a months long campaign by Kenney to persuade Canadians the system is broken, and overly generous to “bogus” claimants, as he puts it. Canada accepts about 40 per cent of all claims, a higher percentage than many other industrialized countries.

Kenney brought attention to what he called a major flaw in the system when he decided last summer to force visitors from Mexico and the Czech Republic to obtain visitors visas before entering the country after there was a sharp spike in refugee applications from Mexicans and Czech citizens as soon as they landed in Canada. He has warned the numbers coming in from Hungary also are unacceptably high, but so far has refrained from requiring visitors to have visas before arriving.

Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Ottawa+unveil+proposals+reform+refugee+system/2737289/story.html#ixzz0jXKfOAgQ

Proposed regulatory changes amending the Canadian temporary foreign worker program

Canada
March 23 2010
Seyfarth Shaw LLP logo

Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), in cooperation with Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) and the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), has proposed amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations. Among the proposed regulations are four main regulatory changes that, if enacted, would dramatically alter the existing Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP).

1. The TFWP would be amended to clarify the process for and establish the factors to be considered in assessing the genuineness of all offers of employment.

The proposed regulations provide a set of criteria by which immigration officers may assess the genuineness of an employment offer. The proposed regulations also clarify that genuineness will be assessed in all offers of temporary employment where an employer-specific work permit (as opposed to an open work permit) is required. Currently, there are no established factors by which an immigration officer may consider the genuineness of a temporary employment offer. However, before an officer can issue a work permit, he or she must be satisfied that there is an actual job opportunity for the applicant, that the employer is able to employ the applicant, and that the applicant is qualified and able to fill the proffered position.

Making a determination that a temporary employment offer is genuine will hinge on the following factors:

* Whether the offer is made by an employer that is actively engaged in the business in respect of which the offer is made;
* Whether the offer is consistent with the reasonable employment needs of the employer;
* Whether the terms of the offer are able to be reasonably fulfilled by the employer; and
* Consideration of the past compliance of the employer with federal or provincial laws that regulate employment in the province in which it is intended that the foreign national work.

2. Noncompliance would subject an employer to a two-year period of ineligibility to access the TFWP, as well as public notice of such ineligibility.

If it is determined that an offer of employment is not genuine (i.e., where an employer has been found to have provided significantly different wages, working conditions, or occupation than what was offered), the employer will be subject to a two-year bar from accessing the TFWP. Hence, the employer will be precluded from hiring any foreign nationals in Canada for a period of two years. In determining whether the bar will apply to a particular employer, the assessment would be undertaken at the time of the application or request and take into account any employment of temporary foreign workers in

the immediately preceding two years. In addition to being barred from use of the TFWP for the next two years, the employer’s name, address, and period of ineligibility to access the TFWP would be posted on CIC’s external website for public viewing. Please note that this determination of ineligibility will be made by the officer processing the application.

3. Work permits, with certain exceptions, would be issued for a maximum of four years in duration, followed by a period of six years in which the temporary foreign worker would not be authorized to work in Canada before a subsequent work permit could be issued.

Temporary work permits in Canada will only be issued for four years and will be truly “temporary” in nature. Once the fouryear maximum is reached, the foreign worker will be prohibited from seeking an extension or subsequent work authorization for a period of six years. The exception to this rule would be for foreign workers who perform work pursuant to an international agreement between Canada and one or more countries, such as NAFTA.

4. Established expiration dates for Labour Market Opinions (LMO)

According to the proposed regulations, HRSDC would be required to establish a period of time during which the LMO is in effect. The impact of such an expiration date would require employers to apply for a work permit for an employee within a specific time period or the employer would be required to request a new LMO.

Finally, these regulatory amendments would be applied prospectively; that is, they would apply only to those requests received by HRSDC and to applications received by CIC on or after the date on which the regulatory amendments come into force. It is expected that these regulatory amendments will come into force within the next six months.

Feds to introduce refugee-system reforms this week

CTV.ca News Staff

Date: Sun. Mar. 28 2010 12:48 PM ET

Ottawa will introduce new legislation this week to fix what it calls a broken refugee system that delays legitimate asylum claims while allowing bogus claimants to remain in Canada through a years-long appeals process.

Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said he will introduce a bill Tuesday that will offer faster protection for real refugees while scuttling the claims of those who use the refugee system to fast-track their way into Canada.

While he declined to reveal many specifics about the legislation, Kenney told CTV’s Question Period that it will “streamline” the appeals process through which claimants who have been turned down by the Refugee Board endeavour to have their claims approved.

“It’s a balanced reform,” Kenney said in an interview from Montreal. “It will speed up the system and give faster protection to real refugees while sending the message to the bogus claimants that you’re not going to be able to use the system in Canada anymore. We’re going to remove you a whole lot more quickly.”

According to Kenney, his ministry faces a backlog of 60,000 asylum claims, which has led to a 19-month waiting period for a hearing or a decision.

“That’s terrible for real victims of persecution,” Kenney said.

The minister said the slow-moving legal immigration system attracts false claimants who use the asylum system to “jump the queue” and gain entry to Canada “through the back door.”

According to Kenney, 58 per cent of asylum claimants are found not to need protection and are either rejected by the Refugee Board, or withdraw their claims.

He pointed specifically to one “European democracy” that has become the number one source country for asylum claims, saying that 97 per cent of those who say they need protection withdraw or abandon their claims. Only three of 2,500 cases from that country that went before the Refugee Board last year were accepted, he said.

While Kenney did not name the country in question in Sunday’s interview, earlier this month he said Hungary has become Canada’s number one source country for refugee claims, at several hundred per month.

“This is telling me that Canada, with the highest number of asylum claims in the developed world, has become a destination of choice for false refugee claimants and it’s simply burdening the system,” Kenney said. “Each one of those claims can cost us as much as $50,000 and four-and-a-half years before they even exhaust all of the appeals under the current, totally dysfunctional system.”

Kenney also said Sunday he will be introducing legislation later this spring to crack down on dishonest immigration consultants.

“We intend to come forward with legislative changes to crack down on the bogus, unscrupulous consultants and advisers who counsel people to commit fraud, who often take money and provide no services, and many of whom counsel immigrants looking for status in Canada to make false refugee claims.”

Thriving Toronto tech firm shows wisdom of hiring immigrant talent

Samtack Computer Inc. doesn’t believe Canadian experience is the best thing since sliced bread. 90 per cent of this tech firm’s workforce is comprised of immigrants or folk trained outside Canada — a hiring practice that has paid off big time.
3/26/2010 6:00:00 AM By: Nestor E. Arellan

Source: http://www.itbusiness.ca/it/client/en/home/News.asp?id=56957

“Help wanted. Canadian experience not necessary”.

For many immigrants applying for jobs in Canada –be it as a factory worker or an IT professional — those words are but a dream.

Unless, of course they happen to apply with Samtack Computer Inc. where having “Canadian experience” on your résumé doesn’t mean a thing.

As a job qualification Fouad Jazouli doesn’t believe Canadian experience counts for much. “I respect it, but set greater store on a person’s attitude,” said Jazouli, vice-president of marketing and operations for the firm.

Jazouli is originally from Lebanon.

Based in the Greater Toronto Area, in the city of Markham, Ont., Samtack is one of the largest computer and parts distributing companies in Canada. It counts Wal-Mart, Future Shop and Best Buy among its clients. More than 90 per cent of its workforce — from factory floor to the board room — is comprised of immigrants who’ve been educated and trained outside Canada.

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For nearly 20 years now the company’s hiring strategy has been to tap into skills of immigrants rather than turn away job applicants because they lack Canadian experience that many hiring managers seek from applicants.

The strategy has worked very well for Samtack, according to Royson Ng, president of the company and himself an immigrant from Malaysia. In the past nine years, the firm’s revenues soared more than six-fold from $20 million to $130 million.

The icing on the cake was when the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC) recently awarded Samtack the RBC Immigrant Advantage Award in recognition of the company’s efforts to hire newcomers. The Council’s mandate is to create and champion initiatives that better integrate skilled immigrants in the Greater Toronto labour market

Living the Canadian dream

“I am living the Canadian dream and would like to give other newcomers a chance to achieve it to,” said Ng whose first job upon landing in Canada, 19 years ago, was working as a gas jockey at the age of 32. The going was tough. Ng’s wife was pregnant and his salary barely paid for their needs.

Ng managed to snag a position as a salesperson at Furture Shop. Within three months he was a manager in training, another three months later he was manager of the branch. Within two years, Ng became regional manager for Future Shop. Eight years later he left the electronics store to take up a vice-president’s position with Samtack.

“I know immigrants have it in them to succeed. That’s why we give them the opportunity and training to achieve that,” he said.

Ng said his company has 115 employees and about 90 per cent come from countries such as China, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Lebanon, Sri Lanka, Africa and Malaysia.

Immigrants, typically, are hardworking because they come to Canada with a strong focus on getting a better life and providing for themselves and their families, he said. “They also usually have a great attitude, and you need that to succeed.”

Immigrants with money — keep them coming

By Don Cayo, Vancouver SunMarch 25, 2010

B.C. is doing much better than any other province at attracting immigrant investors, says a new study on my desk.

What the study doesn’t say — but what I think you’d find if you drilled deeper into the data — is that Metro Vancouver is doing very, very much better. And the rest of the province, not so much.

I say this based merely on anecdote and casual observation, not the stuff of academic studies. But Roger Ware, an economics professor at Queen’s University and one of the study’s authors, agrees that immigrants tend to wind up in places like Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal. And he, like me, thinks it would be good policy to find ways to encourage newcomers to distribute themselves more evenly across the land.

Ware and two associates — Pierre Fortin, emeritus professor of economics at Universite du Quebec, and Pierre Emmanuel Paradis, senior economist at Analysis Group — found a lot of good reasons to want investor immigrants living nearby.

First and foremost, after 2-1/2 decades that Canada has been recruiting about 2,500 investor families a year (just three per cent of all our immigrants) this relative handful collectively adds about $2 billion a year to our economy.

In addition, they provide provincial governments — mainly B.C., since we’re home to 49 per cent of these new arrivals — with $400,000 each in interest-free money that must be left on deposit for their first five years in the country.

Plus they come with an average of three family members — more than most immigrants — and they tend to be independent and well-educated.

Contrary to common perceptions, they also tend to commit to Canada. The study found that 80-plus per cent spend at least 10 months a year here, and they continue to do so years after they’ve immigrated.

Almost three quarters of Canada’s new immigrants are of Chinese descent — 29 per cent from Mainland China, 23 per cent from Hong Kong, and 22 per cent from Taiwan.

And investors who come to Canada tend to be younger than those who choose countries like Australia or the U.K., our competitors for attracting new citizens with money to invest. Ware speculates this might be because the $400,000 deposit required by Canada is less than these other countries demand, so we’re affordable at an earlier stage in their careers.

While a relatively low financial requirement might be a positive when it comes to recruitment, Canada also has one big negative factor, he notes. This is the time it takes — 31 months on average — for our bureaucrats to process an application. This compares to 12 months in Australia, and just 14 weeks in the U.K. And it’s getting worse as the number of applicants rises while processing capacity does not.

This is a shortcoming that Ottawa could deal with easily, assuming it wants to.

But the study also points to a deficiency — and therefore an opportunity — that the province could and should address. This is in the area of services available to help immigrants integrate into their new communities — an area where many new arrivals find us wanting.

Although it’s not the point of the study, this unmet demand might also provide a way for communities that are usually overlooked by immigrants to compete for a greater share. If they were to prepare a thoughtful and helpful welcome mat, so to speak, it might encourage at least a few newcomers to give them a second look.

Investor immigrants bring money, and money creates jobs. The $2 billion a year in continuing benefits is a big boon to Canada, and attracting young families is becoming increasingly important to communities where old folks will soon outnumber the young.

dcayo@vancouversun.com

Visit Don Cayo’s blogs, one on tax issues and one on globalization, at http://www.vancouversun.com/blogs
© Copyright (c) The Vancouver Sun

The Canadian Government Must Expand Opportunities for Immigrant Investors, Study Concludes

Annual Contribution of $2 Billion to the Canadian Economy

TORONTO, March 24 /CNW/ – Three prominent Canadian economists recommend that the Canadian government expand its Immigrant Investor Program, which provides an annual contribution estimated at $2 billion to the Canadian economy.

A study released today by Analysis Group measured the economic impact of the Program, which was founded 25 years ago to encourage the immigration of individuals likely to provide a positive economic and social contribution to Canada. In the study, Roger Ware, Professor of Economics at Queen’s University, Pierre Fortin, Emeritus Professor of Economics at Université du Québec à Montréal and Pierre Emmanuel Paradis, Senior Economist at Analysis Group, conclude that Canada should welcome more immigrant investors, as they directly contribute to alleviating the country’s demographic and economic challenges.

The authors of the study state that the “Immigrant Investor Program should be not only maintained, but expanded. It is financially profitable from a management standpoint, and results in the presence in Canada of thousands of affluent families who significantly contribute to the economy. Moreover, their demographic profile and the integration of the second generation directly contribute to respond positively to our future economic and social challenges. Also, because they still represent only 3% of new immigrants to Canada, their numbers may well be raised substantially.”

Since its inception, more than 130,000 individuals have immigrated to Canada through the Immigrant Investor Program. About 34,400 of these immigrants were principal applicants and the rest were their family members. Program participants must demonstrate a net worth of at least $800,000 (all countries combined), commit to an interest-free investment of $400,000 for five years and possess adequate business and management experience.

Mr. Ware, Mr. Fortin and Mr. Paradis indicate that the Canadian Program is clearly competitive vis-à-vis similar initiatives designed to attract wealthy immigrants throughout the developed world. In addition, they recommend that Canadian authorities leverage the study’s analysis as a starting point to optimise the Program’s criteria and conditions compared to similar international initiatives and improve its weaker aspects. Specifically, they suggest reducing the processing time of applications, analysing the levels of initial contribution and wealth requirements, and improving the integration of new immigrants.

On the selection process, the study states that “although the number of applications processed reached an all-time high of 3,700 in 2008, it represented only half of the total number of applicants during this same year. A huge inventory has resulted from this excess demand, with nearly 9,000 files still waiting to be processed at the end of 2008.”

The benefits of the Program include direct foreign cash inflows, productive use of investor funds, acquisition of personal assets (houses, cars, etc.) and personal consumption items, net productive contribution of immigrant workers and entrepreneurs, and the integration of second-generation immigrants in Canadian labour force and society.

Additional findings of the Analysis Group study include:

– top-5 countries of last permanent residence for immigrant investors
in Canada are China (29 %), Hong Kong (23 %), Taiwan (22 %), South
Korea and Iran. After 1999, mainland China became the main source
country, accounting for 53% of all investor immigrants;
– British Columbia is chosen as the primary province of settlement by
49% of all investor immigrants, followed by Ontario (23%) and Quebec
(22%);
– each immigrant investor is accompanied, on average, by three family
members, which is almost twice as much as in other economic immigrant
categories;
– the majority of immigrant investors were between 40 and 49 years old
at the time of immigration;
– educational attainment has substantially improved over time, as the
proportion of individuals with a high school education or less
dropped from 50% to 30% in recent years after 2000;
– immigrant investors are active players in the Canadian economy,
having acquired an average of $721,500 in personal and business
assets in Canada, including real estate;
– a majority of immigrant investors (82% of respondents) reside in
Canada on average between 10 and 12 months a year. About 90% of them
bought an apartment or house after settling in the country;
– among self-employed immigrant investors, some 30% were active in
business in Canada, with 12% having invested more than $1 million in
business assets;
– about 80% participated in philanthropic activities by donating their
time and/or financial support to a charity organization.

Canadians immigration looks at future skills needs as economy improves

Posted on 23 March 2010 by Apostolos Papapostolou
Source: http://canada.greekreporter.com

The Canadian economy is doing better than expected. There are increased job opportunities, overall trade data including oil exports are on the up. It is against this background that Immigration Minister Jason Kenney announced recently a consultation to identify likely future skills needs. Canadian immigration will look at possible changes to make it easier for immigrants with the right skills to gain entry to Canada.
The Canadian Government would like views of Canadian on steps to take to make sure that Canada fully recovers from the recent Worldwide economic recession. The consultations will consider worker shortages in trades and professions in Canada. It will also look at factors that affect an immigrant’s ability to find a job in Canada.

The immigration consultations will help with the development of instructions to immigration officers on which economic immigration applications should be eligible for processing to help meet Canada’s skilled labour needs. The Action Plan for Faster Immigration resulted in the first set of instructions being issued in November 2008 which kept the backlog of applications from growing, and reduced the waiting times for immigrants.
“The Action Plan for Faster Immigration is designed to make immigration more responsive to Canada’s economic conditions. When these conditions change, the instructions are meant to change too,” said Minister Kenney. “The first set of instructions has had a significant impact, but our research shows it is time to revise them to make sure they continue to meet their goals.”
Canadian immigration says that the Action Plan for Faster Immigration has reduced the federal skilled worker category backlog by 40 percent. Previously there was a backlog of 600,000 applicants. Canadian skilled worker immigration applications are now dealt with within a year. This compares with processing times of perhaps six years under the old immigration system.

Internationally Trained Engineers Experience Success Through Employer-Led Bridge Training Program

Citizenship and Immigration Canada, Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration and Toronto and Region Conservation Celebrate Success of Professional Access and Integration Enhancement (PAIE) Program Participants –

TORONTO, March 22 /CNW/ – Thousands of trained and educated professionals immigrate to Canada every year with the intention of building a better life, advancing their careers, and contributing to the Canadian economy. However, significant barriers restrict internationally trained professionals from continuing their careers in Canada. Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA) is taking action to promote access to Canadian work experience through the Professional Access and Integration Enhancement (PAIE) Program for Internationally Trained Environmental Professionals, a program that is funded by federal and provincial levels of government through Citizenship and Immigration Canada and the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration. On March 23rd, TRCA will be hosting an event to celebrate the successful completion of the program by 45 Internationally Trained Environmental Engineers representing India, China, Egypt, Colombia, Iraq, Pakistan, Nigeria, Ukraine, Bangladesh, Iran, Philippines and Venezuela to name a few.

The event also celebrates the dedication and support of funders, partners and employers who helped make the program a success. Many participants have been gainfully employed in their professional field and obtained their professional licenses through Professional Engineers Ontario and the Association of Professional Geoscientists of Ontario.

“The inclusion of sustainable communities and social equity within The Living City vision is a testament to our role as a leader and innovator within the environmental field,” said Brian Denney, CAO, Toronto and Region Conservation. “PAIE candidates bring technical expertise, global perspective and cultural insight; assets that are pertinent to the success of organizations operating within the GTA. These participants have worked very hard to complete the program and their dedication, along with the support from our funders, partners, and participating employers will help make the GTA a greener, healthier place to live.”

Now in its fourth year, PAIE is well established and recognized as a successful and effective mechanism to connect employers with highly skilled talent, offsetting the labour shortage and filling employment gaps that have been identified in the environmental sector, while providing much-needed Canadian experience to deserving candidates.

The PAIE Program provided participants with 150 hours of Enhanced Language Training, over 80 hours of Technical Training Workshops and a series of hands-on field excursions led by TRCA and industry experts. In addition, the program offered highly-skilled 12-month paid engineering work placements with host employers in the public and private sectors.

The PAIE Program is working in conjunction with ACCES Employment Services, Professional Engineers Ontario, Workplace Communication & Diversity Inc., A2Z Technical Services Ltd., Council for Access to the Profession of Engineering, Skills for Change and MCB Solutions.

PAIE – CELEBRATING EXCELLENCE
DATE: Tuesday, March 23, 2010
TIMES: 8:30 a.m. (Registration); 9 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. (Event and
Recognition)
LOCATION: Black Creek Pioneer Village, 1000 Murray Ross Parkway,
Downsview, Ontario
WHO: Meeta Bhimani, Director of Settlement Operations, Toronto &
York, Citizenship and Immigration Canada; Rahel Ogbagzy, Senior
Program Advisor, Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration; Gerri
Lynn O’Connor; Chair, Toronto and Region Conservation
Authority; Brian Denney, CAO, Toronto and Region Conservation
Authority; Kathy Wallace, P. Geo Associate Terraprobe; and
Meranda Morcos, PAIE Participant.

With over 50 years of experience, Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA) helps people understand, enjoy and look after the natural environment-creating a cleaner, greener and healthier place to live, for you today and for your children tomorrow. For more information, call 416-661-6600 or visit us at http://www.trca.on.ca

For further information: For media information contact: Rowena Calpito, Supervisor, Media Management, Toronto and Region Conservation, (416) 661-6600 ext 5632, rcalpito@trca.on.ca

Canadian Immigration a boost for economic and social diversity

Since 1892, Canadian immigration programs have helped boost the country’s economic, social, and cultural diversity by helping new migrants enter the country.

The Canadian immigration service, or Citizenship and Immigration Canada, was created in 1994 to link Canadian immigration services with citizenship registration, to promote the unique ideals all Canadians share, and to help build a stronger Canada.
In 2008, the Multicultural Program was moved from the Canadian Heritage department to the Canadian Immigration department.

The mission of Citizenship and Immigration Canada is to develop and implement policies, programs and services that facilitate the arrival of new migrants and their successful settlement into Canada, as well as enhancing the values of Canadian citizenship, and fostering increased intercultural understanding.

The main goal of the Canadian Immigration department is to advance the global migration policies in a way that supports Canada’s immigration and humanitarian objectives, with an approach to Canadian immigration that responds to the needs of communities in all parts of the country.

To achieve this goal the department strives to deliver impartial, unbiased and accountable decisions for all applicants.
Some of the work that the Canadian Immigration service does includes:

* Admitting migrants, overseas students, temporary workers and tourists who will aid Canada’s economic growth and social vibrancy;
* Resettling and protecting refugees;
* Aid new migrants in adapting to Canadian society;
* Provide security and integrity of the Canadian borders and laws; AND
* Help Canadians and newcomers alike to be full participants in the economic, political, social and cultural life of Canada.

These roles build upon Canada’s history of welcoming migrants, and the Canadian immigration and refugee system, combined with a network of other organisation, are among the best in the world.

Recent statistics show that one out of every six Canadian residents was born outside Canada, proof that Canadian immigration has helped make the country culturally rich and progressive.

In terms of migration, Canadian Immigration service handles five different types of processes: tourism visitors, temporary workers, overseas students, permanent migrants, and refugees.

Depending on the country of nationality, and the reason for your visit, you may need to meet certain entry requirements to enter Canada. In some cases Canadian Immigration will require you obtain a Temporary Resident Visa, which can be applied for online but must be obtained before you can board a flight to Canada. Even if you are a citizen of a country where you do not need a Canadian Visa to enter you must still have a valid passport. For specific information on passport requirements it is recommended to seek advice from the Canadian Embassy in your country.

It is important to note the visa exemption does not guarantee automatic entry into Canada, as you must still satisfy a Canadian immigration officer that you are admissible.

If you want to work temporarily in Canada you are part of some 90,000 foreign workers who enter Canada and help address skills shortages.

Canadian Immigration issue work permits for temporary workers, but not all temporary workers need a permit and your employer will help you determine if you are eligible. If you do not need a work permit to work in Canada you will still need to adhere to other Canadian immigration rules.

For example, athletes and coaches are one category for which you may not need a work permit but if you are from a country that Canada requires having a visa you must apply for a Temporary Resident Visa.

Foreign students to Canada obtain a Canadian Study Permit, or a Temporary Resident Visa depending on the length of stay and the country of origin. But before you can apply to Canadian immigration for a study permit you must be accepted at a recognised school, university or college in Canada.

Canada has a number of different categories whereby a person can immigrate to Canada, with programmes for: skilled workers and professionals; Quebec-selected skilled workers; Canadian experience class; investors, entrepreneurs and self-employed people; provincial nominees; and a family class.

Negotiating the permanent migration process can sometimes be difficult; some many people choose to use a migration agent to help them with Canadian immigration. A migration agent also may also be able to help a new permanent migrant beyond the immigration process, with advice for moving, government services contacts, and other relevant information for completing the move to Canada successfully.

Canadian immigration also offers protection for refugees, in and outside of Canada, who fear returning to their home country. Canadian immigration provides protection to thousands of people every year who fear persecution or whose removal from Canada would subject them to any danger.

Canada operates a global refugee resettlement program that in 2007 resettled refugees of about 70 different nationalities. On average, Canada resettles 10,000 to 12,000 refugees every year, and both the domestic refugee system and the resettlement program have been praised by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

Source: Whitehaven News

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