Canada is a multicultural land that welcomes new immigrants with open arms, open hearts and open minds. Canadian multicultural policies have an impact on all ethnic and faith groups, on rich and poor, on old and young, men, women and transgender people. These policies are equalizers. Nevertheless, they have legal and budgetary restraints.
All applicants intending to immigrate to Canada should be informed about Canada’s brand of multiculturalism at the earliest stages of submitting their applications. Understanding what multiculturalism means in Canada will help applicants adjust their level of expectations to its proper context.
Canada is a functioning democracy, meaning it respects the rule of law, has an independent judiciary, a free press, it respects human rights, gender equality and all levels of free elections.
An immigrant should never expect Canada to sacrifice or weaken its democratic laws to accommodate cultural practices incompatible with its values such as, the practice of the Islamic Sharia Law, female genital mutilation, child and forced marriages, or polygamy and honour killings.
Physical punishment of children as a form of discipline is deemed child abuse and illegal in Canada and could result in a child being removed from the custody and guardianship of his parents.
Even though Canada is liberally democratic and blessed with rich resources it cannot accommodate demands to teach every ethnic language in public schools. Such demands are not only a fiscal burden on tax payers, but are socially isolating. New Immigrants should be expected to come equipped with a basic proficiency in English or French, the two national languages, before leaving their country of residence.
As new immigrants continue to form part of the Canadian multicultural fabric they must fully understand their obligations as a Canadian resident/citizen. They must understand and accept that they are expected to contribute to national safety, stability and social harmony.
Charles Vincent Massey, the late Governor General of Canada once said, “The conditions have always been difficult. We must pass through the barriers of languages and race, of geography and religion, of custom and tradition and we must build on a common foundation, without jealousy or hatred, with tolerance and sympathy.”
Source: Huffington Post