As concerned citizens of Canada, we firmly support a diverse and plural society and recognize that Canada's future growth and prosperity is dependent on our ability to attract and retain the right people to immigrate to Canada.
The current system fails both Canada and our new immigrants, by institutionalizing a mismatch between skills, values and ability to contribute to our society. This leads not only to a drain on Canadian resources, but condemns new immigrants to a subordinate life on the margins of Canadian society.
In order to ensure that our immigration system benefits both Canada and the new immigrants, we urge the Federal Government to take the following steps immediately:
1. Ensure English or French language proficiency for all Economic migrants.
2. Limit migration and sponsorship to immediate dependent family only, i.e. spouses and children under 21.
3. Confirm Canadian equivalence of education and professional credentials, and admit professionals only after ascertaining they can perform in their chosen field.
4. Give preference to individuals with existing and validated offers of employment from Canadian employers.
5. Factor in previous familiarity with and knowledge of Canada and our culture, values and institutions.
6. Ensure that immigrants are aware of, understand, and accept universal Canadian values of equality, mutual respect and mutual acceptance.
7. While retaining our humanitarian obligations to oppressed people worldwide, ensure our refugee policy rejects people who are not fleeing government persecution, applicants from democratic nations, or those arriving from a safe third country
Without these reasonable measures being put in place, we fear a gradual splintering of Canada into multiple enclaves of segregated ethnicities, driven by the inability and/or unwillingness to adapt to Canada, driving economic and social marginalization, and ensuring ongoing adherence to the norms of the countries of origin.
The Federal Government needs to take actions now, to ensure that we build a strong Canada while retaining and enhancing our reputation as a fair, welcoming society for all people who can contribute to our growth and eventually become equal citizens and fellow-Canadians.
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