A study conducted by Environics Institute has found that Canadians are increasingly open to welcoming immigrants, despite the pandemic. The study observed that more than ever, now Canadians reject the idea that immigrants are not adopting Canadian values. And a significant majority of them also think that immigration is crucial for the growth of the country’s economy and don’t think immigrants take away jobs from Canadians.
The study also examined whether the recent world events have influenced the opinion of Canadians about immigrants in any manner. Specifically, they tested whether the anti-immigration sentiments widely prevalent in the neighboring US have any impact on Canadians. The study found that Trump’s immigration policies have failed to impress Canadians. More interestingly, even the anti-immigration People’s Party of Canada that was formed in 2019, has failed to bring about a shift in opinion among Canadians. The pandemic, which left thousands jobless and led to a slowdown of economic activities, has also failed to turn Canadians against keeping immigration levels high.
This shift in opinions was evident not only in cities like Toronto, but in Atlantic Canada, where people think that more immigrants means more businesses will be started here.
Reasons why Canadians favor immigrants
Experts think that there are many reasons behind the openness of Canada towards immigrants. It seems that Canadians have rejected US president’s xenophobic views and on the contrary, these views have reinforced a sense of distinctiveness among them. Further, the pandemic that left everyone in the same situation together also created a feeling of oneness. Canadians’ belief that immigration is good for the economy also had an impact on their opinion about immigration.
Canada immigration targets
As per the multi-year immigration levels plan of Canada announced in March 2020, the country may welcome 390000 new immigrants per year by 2022. While the immigration target for 2020 is 341000, the target for 2021 is 351000 and for 2022, it is 361000. The target set of economic class immigrants is 195800 in 2020, 203050 in 2021 and 212050 in 2022. At the same time, Canada is planning to welcome 91000 Family Class immigrants in 2020, 2021 and 2022.
In 2019, Canada welcomed more than 341000 new permanent residents, which is a record. It was also the second consecutive year when Canada invited more than 300000 permanent residents.
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