Newcomers to Windsor, Ontario are able to access health care easily enough, but find that language barriers remain a strong challenge, according to a new survey of immigrants.
The survey, conducted and released this month by local resettlement agencies, found that almost 90 percent of the 530 respondents have a family doctor. At the same time, however, nearly half – 45 percent – relied upon the services of a translator when seeking health care.
Most of said interpreters come in the form of a family member – most often of which being a child or younger member of the family. This can cause difficulties in understanding as well as strain the relationship as the information might be private and unsuitable for children of other family members to know.
The results of the survey will be used by immigrant advocate groups, as well as health care professionals to design future services. One change, for example, that the results could instigate would be to have more translators on hand at health institutions for at least the most commonly spoken immigrant languages such as Punjabi or Chinese.
Such a policy has been implemented in other urban centers that have seen a jump in immigration in recent years such as Surrey, British Columbia.
Experts warn however, that the sample for this survey was quite limited, as it was administered only in English and used students in language classes, most of whom were female.
Sources: Windsor Star
New figures show that the recent “crackdown” on fraud by Citizenship and Immigration Canada may not have been either as necessary, or as effective as first touted.
Since the crackdown was launched in July of 2011, Immigration Minister Jason Kenney says that 19 citizenships had been revoked. However, the latest data shows that of those 19, only 12 revocations were related to evidence of fraud.
This is causing concern among immigrant advocates who say that the so-called crackdown is ineffective at least and detrimental to the system at worst, as it is causing delays in other areas.
Minister Kenney’s office, however, continues to trumpet the benefits of the strict policy indicating that nearly 3,000 people are currently under investigation, though less than 10 percent of which have been located thus far.
“The process to revoke citizenship is lengthy so it will take some time to revoke the citizenship of thousands of people, considering the process started only a year and a half ago,” said a CIC spokesperson. “But no matter how long it takes, we will ensure that the full strength of the law is applied to anyone who lied or cheated to obtain Canadian citizenship.”
Those who are suspected of fraud do have a potential course of action to pursue to defend their citizenship – they may ask the Federal Court to conduct a review. There is no time limit in which the government may seek a revocation, and they can do so on grounds of “fraud, false representation or deliberately hiding information that could have affected a person’s eligibility for permanent residency or citizenship.”
Source: Calgary Herald
The recent economic boom in the province of Saskatchewan has led to an influx of immigrants and a need for more resettlement services.
One such service is being provided in the form of the Immigration Access Fund (IAF), which provides small-scale loans for new arrivals to the province to help get them on their feet and provide the breathing room they might need to get off to a good start.
Immigrants like Opeoluwa Okunola, who arrived in the province from Nigeria in 2011, often enter the country with high education and skill levels, but find themselves unable to work immediately in their field of specialty. Being able to borrow up to $10,000 from the IAF allows them to focus on doing what they have to do to get re-accredited in their field instead of worrying about the next paycheck.
“I know what it’s like to be an immigrant, the shock and challenges they face,” says Okunola, who, with the help of the IAF, was able to find work in her field of university administration and teaching. “To say that I am fulfilled being able to practice in my chosen profession would be an understatement.”
IAF spokesperson Sandra Grismer says that in the first year of running, the program provided an average of $6300 in funds to 70 newcomers chosen based on their background and goals. Grismer says that the money lent out comes back two-fold in that once employed, immigrants are also contributing economically through taxes, purchases and leasing.
Source: Saskatoon Star-Pheonix
Employers are doing everything they can to help attract foreign skilled trade workers to Alberta in anticipation of growing worker shortages over the next decade.
The province, which has been experiencing massive growth for several years now, is expected to be short upwards of 114,000 workers in the trades by 2021. Such startling figures have prompted employers to seek out solutions beyond their borders, and several new initiatives across the province have been set up with the aim of assisting foreign workers.
One such initiative is the Qualification Certification Program, which enables foreign skilled trade workers who meet minimum certification and experience requirements to come to Canada and work in their trade for up to 12 months before taking exams for recertification.
Since 2005 over 2,000 foreign workers have become certified in the province. Despite these promising numbers, however, employers are still feeling the pressure and hoping that the government can do more to help. The new skilled trade worker immigration stream, introduced this year by the Conservative government, should go a long way in addressing the issue.
“No business owner in their right mind would go through all the costs and hassle of bringing in skilled workers from another country if there was someone down the street willing and able to work in that position,” said Alberta’s director of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business Richard Truscott, adding that the dire situation in Canada has forced employers to adapt to attract and retain more workers from overseas.
Source: Edmonton Journal