Monday, 9 April 2012

Recent Study Questions Wisdom Of Importing High Number of Immigrants During Economic Downturn.

File this one under DUH!!!
A new report on immigration outcomes questions Ottawa’s insistence on maintaining Canada’s high immigration levels despite a recession.
Bringing in a huge number of immigrants during an economic downturn could create an underclass of new Canadians caught up in adversity, said the study by the Institute for Research on Public Policy.
We do not learn anything new from this report as it reiterates what immigration critics have been saying years but it is a welcome one nonetheless since it helps bring attention to an immigration system that may end up doing more harm to Canadian society than good.

And there is ample evidence to suggest the caution the report encourages is warranted.

The Toronto Star gives us this report on the dramatic upswing in the number of Toronto's working poor.
The legions of Toronto area workers pouring coffee, cleaning toilets and otherwise toiling for low wages in office towers and factories is growing dramatically.
Between 2000 and 2005, the area’s working poor grew by 42 per cent, to 113,000 people, according to a groundbreaking report based on Statistics Canada labour and income data.
Across the region, they accounted for 6.4 per cent of the working-age population. But inside the city of Toronto, they surged to 8.2 per cent of the workforce, or 70,700 people, says the study by the Metcalf Foundation, released on Saturday.
“Working many hours and holding full-time, year-round employment is no longer a guarantee of escaping poverty,” says the report, entitled: “The ‘Working Poor’ in the Toronto Region; Who they are, where they live, and how trends are changing.”
And here's the kicker:
Almost three out of four are immigrants, and almost half are single or lone parents. More than half have some post-secondary education, about the same as the average Canadian worker. 
Almost 60 per cent are renters, and more than 60 per cent are between the ages of 18 and 44. 
Bear in mind that this was the picture during the region’s boom times.
Although StatsCan income data for 2011 isn’t yet available, the situation has likely worsened, says economist Armine Yalnizyan of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.
The Toronto Star also gives us this report on immigrants being the "new homeless."
But a new study on immigrant housing warns that thousands of newcomers continue to live in “hidden homelessness” — in shared, overcrowded housing — an issue that has grown more acute, especially in Toronto, where affordable rental units are in short supply.
The national study by Metropolis, an international network of researchers in immigration policy, found most newcomers reported spending more than 50 per cent of income on housing, with 15 per cent spending 75 per cent or more. 
What is to be expected when unemployment rates for immigrants have typically been higher than the national average?  Here StatsCan informs us that back in 2006 the unemployment rate for recent immigrants was 12.3%, nearly double the national average at the time of 6.3%.  Should we assume the gap has shrunk since then?  I doubt it.  And let us not forget that the official rates characteristically understate the severity of unemployment in the country since it does not take into account the underemployed, seasonal and other temporary work, part time work, and those who have become so discouraged they have withdrawn from the labour market altogether.  It is quite likely then that the current unemployment rate for recent immigrants is near 15%.

There is no wisdom in allowing over 260,000 permanent residents into Canada this year, along with an additional 200,000+ temporary workers.  But has it been wise to allow so many into the country over the past two decades?  This is a question ImmigrationWatchCanada.org raises and the report never addresses.  The answer is no, it has not been wise to do so and every excuse used to justify such high numbers fails upon closer examination.

With an apparent immigrant underclass already established in Canada's major urban centres importing record numbers of more immigrants into the country will make matters worse.  Marry this to youth unemployment and what you have is a disaster in the making.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Pax, I have bad news. Even if the Toronto Star started posting only reasonable articles about immigration overnight, the massive import of foreigners to Canada would not stop. How do you explain that the current governing party of Canada with a former Reform Party MP as prime minister (just a reminder, the Reform Party’s immigration platform back in the early ‘90s opposed "any immigration based on race or creed or designed to radically or suddenly alter the ethnic makeup of Canada”) holding majority power in Ottawa keeps the floodgates open? Kenney keeps himself on the news with reform announcements that sound good to the core conservative voters, but he continues letting in nearly half a million mostly Asian immigrants/refugees/temp workers annually, not questions asked...

My explanation is that Canada‘s economy is addicted to the drug called immigration. The lack of economic concept that federal governments have represented in the last four decades is truly showing, and there is no attempt to change it is in sight. Harper “focuses on the economy”, that’s what he says all the time. “In Canadian” it means keeping the economy afloat with mass numbers of immigrants. As long as the banks, the RE and immigration industries and the Oil Sands in Alberta are running well, he can deliver the growth numbers.

No surprise here, only the politicians’ complete lack of vision on federal and provincial levels. Combine it with multiculturalism and the rest of the PC garbage and it is really a disaster in the making.

PaxCanadiana said...

How do you explain that the current governing party of Canada with a former Reform Party MP as prime minister...holding majority power in Ottawa keeps the floodgates open?

I think politics is the main influential factor. The Conservatives are clearly aware of the power of the ethnic swing-vote in scores of electoral ridings in Canada's voter rich cities. It's about votes both current and future votes from imported "new Canadians."

Kenney keeps himself on the news with reform announcements...but he continues letting in nearly half a million mostly Asian immigrants/refugees/temp workers annually...

If you are implying that Kenney's reforms are mostly cosmetic then I agree. While I do applaud his attempts at reforming the system he isn't addressing the real problems affecting the system; the main one being the one you allude to: too many immigrants and too many of the wrong kind from too few source (Asian) countries.

I think a lot of it is for show, to make it look like the government is doing something about it while not doing anything at all. The refugee system is the best example of this. The problem is the Singh decision which can be corrected by invoking the notwithstanding clause. But instead of doing this the government opts to dance around it by legislating patchwork solutions.

Politics is the reason as the Conservatives are afraid of scarring off "ethnic voters" by appearing anti-immigrant through much needed reforms to the system. And you can sure as hell bet on the opposition parties opportunistically capitalizing on any reforms by painting them as anti-immigrant even if the reforms are in the best interests of the country and us Canadians.

My explanation is that Canada‘s economy is addicted to the drug called immigration.

If by economy you mean a potential housing bubble and a commodities boom fuelled by speculative capital flooding the futures market then the state of the Canadian economy is not as healthy as it appears.

But I agree to the extent that what you say is true for some key segments of the economy particularly the housing market. The housing market is addicted to immigration and if it is currently in the midst of a bubble then it is understandable the government will want to continue to flood the country with immigrants to keep the bubble from popping. It's going to pop sooner or later but I think the government is trying to buy time so that it will be better positioned to deal with it when, or if, it comes. At least I hope they will be. The BoC's Mark Carney recently stated he will intervene in the event of a debt crisis so this just tells us they are aware of the issue.

No surprise here, only the politicians’ complete lack of vision on federal and provincial levels. Combine it with multiculturalism and the rest of the PC garbage and it is really a disaster in the making.

This country truly lacks leadership at all levels of government.

Anonymous said...

paxcanadiana, dude run for government id vote for you, pretty soon its gonna be too late. any politican is gonna need the asian vote. fuck, thank god I'm an american citizen.

Anonymous said...

Yes paxcanadiana - run for government, I'd vote for you too!