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NCM NewsFeed

 

Here and Now

We are in summer holiday season and most folks are on vacation, at their cottages or on a beach somewhere, or doing what people do “back in their homelands.” This summer slumber was also reflected on our pages, but didn’t stop Michael Bach of the Canadian Institute of Diversity and Inclusion from writing a thoughtful piece on how our border services agency handled the arrival of five Hindu sadhus from India. His verdict: it was handled all wrong.

This last week also gave us an opportunity to explore a theme we’ve wondered about for a while: immigration through the eyes of multiple generations. We finally located a father-daughter duo in Vancouver who offered to write for us; they happen to be journalists. They offer very different perspectives on life in Canada and how they’ve come to be where they are.

It also seems to have been the week of “racist flyers.” First came news about yet another racist pamphlet in Brampton aimed at the Sikhs there, but intrepid reporter Priya Ramanujam alerted us to another one late in the week, this time on the campus of York University, put up by an organization called Immigration Watch Canada. Their rallying cry: “Why Is Canada bringing in 250,000+ immigrants per year? Ottawa has never provided a logical answer to that question.”

 

In other headlines:

 

 

Ripples

A Canadian cleric from Pakistan is making waves on the sub-continent, leading a campaign to topple the government in his native country. Tahir ul Qadri, who left Canada in June to return to Pakistan, says he will continue his fight despite a murder investigation launched against him by the Pakistani police. He has asked thousands of his supporters to march on the capital Islamabad in a bid to oust the elected government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. In response, the government has barricaded the capital and his home with shipping containers.

A made-in-Canada experimental Ebola vaccine is being offered for use in West Africa to fight the raging epidemic.  The news came after the World Health Organization said a panel of experts decided that it would be ethical to use untested drugs and vaccines to try and stem the threat.

Another Canadian making ripples, albeit much smaller ones, was Arthur Porter, the ex-McGill hospital boss at the centre of an alleged $22.5 million bribery and kickback scandal. He was trampled during a violent prison riot in Panama. Dr. Porter, who was also a former head of Canada's spy watchdog agency, has been in prison ever since his arrest in May 2013 on an international warrant. He is fighting a request by Quebec police for his extradition back to Canada.

Harmony Jazz

 Among the numerous articles on antisemitism and the ongoing situation in Gaza, some of the better pieces include The Difficult Work Of Measuring Anti-Semitism In Europe | FiveThirtyEightStop the Anti-Semitism When Talking Gaza – The Daily Beast, and The Guardian view on Gaza and the rise of antisemitism.

Racism and discrimination are both of the past and yet remain enduring. On the anniversary of World War 1, WWI racism: black, Asian and aboriginal volunteers faced discrimination and Battling enemies overseas, fighting racism on home front remind us of our past injustices. This included wartime internment for many Eastern Europeans, particularly Ukrainian Canadians, as well as immigration restrictions, which touched particularly Indo-Canadians and Chinese Canadians among other visible minorities.

A University of Alberta researcher tracked tweets [that] reflect racist attitudes online, while south of the border, Danielle Henderson argues that We’re not a post-racial society. We’re the innocent until proven racist society.

Back Pocket

This summer Nova Scotia’s Immigrant Settlement & Integration Services (ISIS) has released a special publication that focuses on 15 individuals and families who settled in that province as refugees. Resilience and Resettlement is a 19-page booklet, available for viewing online, that tells the harrowing stories of refugees fleeing from conflict zones around the world and their struggles to make new lives in the Maritimes. While clearly intended to highlight and promote the work of ISIS, the publication also gives a rare glimpse into the experiences of those immigrants that come to Canada in the most difficult circumstances. The United Nations estimates that, in 2012, 45.2 million people were forcibly displaced from their homes worldwide, including 11.1 million refugees; that year, Canada accepted 6,226 refugees to its shores. While fewer than 10% of Canada’s refugees end up in Nova Scotia, Resilience and Resettlement is creative way to make them and their histories more visible.

To continue to build an increasingly multicultural society, we must acknowledge our past failings as a nation and educate our next generation so they can do better. But it can be difficult to talk to children about racial discrimination and to teach them about history in a way that balances past injustices with current realities. Canadian publisher Lorimer Books offers a resource in Righting Canada’s Wrongs, a series of books for young readers that explore historical incidents of discrimination by the Canadian government against certain groups of citizens and how those peoples have sought redress and built paths to fuller, more just citizenship for all. The series, geared toward readers 13-and-up, includes titles on the Italian and Japanese internments during World War II and the Komagata Maru affair, as well as a volume on the Chinese Head Tax to be released this fall. Resource guides for teachers are also available. 


Before you go, do take a moment to weigh in on our new Poll Question: Do you agree with Michael Bach when he says the CBSA mishandled the arrival of five Hindu sadhus at Pearson airport in Toronto?

Results from our last poll question: Is grammar important to convey meaning? 67% voted Yes, 22% voted No, and 11% Don’t know. Thank you to all those who took the time to weigh in.

With that, have a great weekend and don’t forget to look up the next edition of NCM NewsFeed every Friday morning! We will soon be launching an e-mail version of this newsletter, so please subscribe by clicking here.

Publisher’s Note: This NewsFeed was compiled with input from our Newsroom Editors and regular columnist, Andrew Griffith. We welcome your feedback.

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Poll Question

Do you agree with the new immigration levels for 2017?

Yes - 30.8%
No - 46.2%
Don't know - 23.1%
The voting for this poll has ended on: %05 %b %2016 - %21:%Dec

Featured Quote

The honest truth is there is still reluctance around immigration policy... When we want to talk about immigration and we say we want to bring more immigrants in because it's good for the economy, we still get pushback.

-- Canada's economic development minister Navdeep Bains at a Public Policy Forum economic summit

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