I am afraid that your newspaper has inadvertently misled your readers about family class immigration levels (Government chops visas that reunite immigrant families, February 18).
In fact, the Harper government is planning to increase family class immigration this year.
We believe in the importance of family reunification as one of the objectives of Canada’s immigration policy.
That’s why, in the 2011 immigration plan I tabled in Parliament late last year, which remains in effect today, I made clear we are increasing our planning range for family class immigrants to allow up to 65,000 immigrants into Canada.
That’s an increase from the 59,029 who were admitted in 2010; and not, as you call it, a “cutback.”
Within the family class, our government is putting wives, husbands, and children first.
That means more dads, mums, and children being reunited with their loved ones than in previous years.
In the five years the Harper government has held office, the average number of immigrants admitted under the family class each year has been 63,476.
That is significantly higher than under the six years prior to that when the Liberals held office, during which the annual average was 60,224 immigrants.
Unlike the Ignatieff Liberals, our government doesn’t just talk about the importance of immigration, we actually take steps to welcome more immigrants to Canada, and help them succeed once they arrive.
Hon. Jason Kenney, PC, MP
Minister of Citizenship and Immigration
Note the braggadocio tone of the letter. Also note how politicized it is.
Hands up if you think Jason Kenney is a tool. Keep them up if you think the Conservative Party has been an absolute disappointment on the immigration issue. The Conservative and Liberal parties are pretty much the same party in Canada now with a slight difference in taste like Pepsi is to Coke.
The family reunification class has been a prime contributor to increasing poverty rates within immigrant communities since those who enter Canada this way need no pertinent job skills and language skills. Thus, Canadians are forced to pay for their skills upgrade just to give them a fighting chance in the job market which translates into years of below par productivity and heavy public subsidy. But they do work on the cheap. And the Conservatives plan to bring in more of them during a slowdown in the economy. And this is saying nothing of the negative effects this has on Canada's working poor, recent immigrant arrivals, on our health care system and public school system.
They are also future voters which is what this is all about (and Jason Kenney's future run for leader of the Conservative party). Indeed, be they Conservative or Liberal or NDP, immigration is first and foremost a voter importing mechanism. Go ahead and tell me it isn't.
Hat tip to Immigrationwatchcanada.org.