Majority of Canadians Remain in Favour of Immigration

Majority of Canadians remain in favour of immigration, a new survey finds

Majority of Canadians remain in favour of immigration

Majority of Canadians remain in favour of immigration

80% of Canadians believe immigration is having a positive impact on Canada’s economy

A majority of Canadians continue to hold positive views about immigration and its impact on Canada’s economy, a new public opinion survey has found.

Conducted in February, the annual Focus Canada survey by the Environics Institute and the Canadian Race Relations Foundation interviewed 2,000 Canadians over the age of 18.

Despite the hardening of views against immigrants in the United States and Europe, the study found that most Canadians continue to view immigration in a mainly positive light.

“Canadians as a whole continue to be more positive than negative about the current levels of immigrants coming to this country, and with the legitimacy of refugees who have been arriving,” the study says, noting that “worldwide, Canadians are among the most accepting of immigrants in their country.”

Overall, 60 percent of those surveyed expressed a favourable view of immigration. This jumped to 80 percent who see immigration having a positive impact on Canada’s economy. Only 16 percent of Canadians disagreed with this view.

“The positive impact of immigration is the majority view across the population, and the upward shift is evident across most groups but especially in Quebec and the western provinces, while holding steady in the Atlantic provinces and Ontario,” the study notes.

The survey results were published on the same day Statistics Canada revealed that international migration was the main driver of an increase in the country’s population in the last quarter of 2017. It also follows a report on Canada’s Atlantic provinces that says the retention of immigrants to the region is crucial for its economic survival.

Integration concerns waning

The positive view of immigration was balanced by the fact 51 percent of those surveyed said too many immigrants are not adopting Canadian values. This percentage, however, was the lowest since the survey began asking Canadians about this issue in 1993.

Across Canada, positive opinions on immigration and refugees are more widespread in the province of British Columbia, where 66 percent disagreed with the view that “overall, there is too much immigration in Canada.” The same percentage of Canadians aged 18 to 29 and second-generation Canadians also disagreed, as did 69 per cent of Canadians with a university degree.

Negative views of immigration and refugees were more widespread in the province of Alberta, among Canadians above the age of 60 and those with only a high school education.

Alberta also led Canadian provinces in the number of respondents who believed too few immigrants were adopting Canadian values (62 percent). This view, meanwhile, was lowest in British Columbia and Manitoba / Saskatchewan, where 46 percent of respondents shared this view.

Attitude toward refugees remains positive

The admission of 40,000 Syrian refugees since 2015 and the arrival of nearly 50,000 asylum seekers in Canada last year has not dampened Canadian support for refugees.

Of those surveyed, 45 percent said they believe most people claiming to be refugees are legitimate compared to 38 percent who believe they’re not. Environics said uncertainty has replaced some of the more strongly held views on the issue that it found in 2017, with 17 percent now saying they have no clear opinion on the legitimacy of refugee claims, an increase of seven points.

“This softening trend is evident across much of the population, but is most noticeable in Ontario, Manitoba and Saskatchewan,” the study says, adding this was also the case in Quebec, which was the focus of the asylum seeker influx in 2017.

Negative perceptions of refugees tend to increase with age, decrease with socio-economic status, and are more prevalent among men and immigrants.

90% of Canadians feel their city is good for immigrants

Environics also shared the findings of the 2017 Gallup World Poll, which is conducted each year in 140 countries. This study found Canadians holding some of the most positive views about their cities as a welcoming place for immigrants.

More than nine in 10 Canadians (92 percent) said the city or area where they live is “a good place” for immigrants. This is an increase of four points over 2016.

“Canadian public opinion on their community as a place for immigrants is significantly more positive than for all other 34 OECD countries (where the average is 65 percent), and has been consistently so since 2006,” the study says.

Overall, Canada was ranked third by Gallup’s Migrant Acceptance Index, which measures comfort levels and attitudes to immigrants. Only Iceland and New Zealand outranked Canada.

These findings mirror the recently released World Happiness Report, which surveys immigrants about their sense of well-being in their adopted countries. Canada ranked seventh in the world in terms of immigrant happiness, which Environics said parallels that of native-born Canadians.

Treatment of minority groups

Despite these views, most Canadians acknowledge that discrimination remains a concern, especially toward Muslims, people from Middle Eastern countries, and Indigenous peoples.

Of those surveyed, half said they believe Muslims experience discrimination “often” and 34 percent said they believe this occurs “sometimes.” Interestingly, immigrants were less likely than native-born Canadians to believe such discrimination was frequent.

The belief that Muslims are frequently discriminated against was most evident in Quebec, where 58 percent of respondents expressed this view. This number, however, was down 10 points since 2015.

“[Muslims] are among the most poorly understood and stigmatized groups, in part because of their recent arrival and ethnic origins, and in part because of specific religious and cultural practices (e.g., face coverings) make many Canadians uncomfortable,” the study says.

Canadians remain more inclined toward a generally positive view of Islam than a negative one (45 percent versus 35 percent). At the same time, 45 percent of those surveyed said they think Muslims “want to be distinct from the larger society.”

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Auckland remains world third best city for quality of life

Auckland remains world’s third best city for quality of life

Auckland remains world's third best city for quality of life

Auckland remains world’s third best city for quality of life

Auckland has again been ranked the third best city in the world for quality of life, according to an international survey.

Consultancy giant Mercer’s Quality of Living Index has ranked the Super City third out of 450 cities. Austrian capital Vienna was top, and Switzerland’s largest city, Zurich, was second. Auckland shared third place with German city Munich.

Wellington came in at 15th place, followed by Melbourne at 16th place. Sydney was Australia’s top-ranked city at 10.

Mercer New Zealand CEO Martin Lewington said the City of Sails remained an attractive place to do business.

“There are a number of factors which have contributed to companies looking at establishing headquarters or relocating expats to Auckland,”  he said.

“New Zealand’s natural environment and subtropical climate, stable political and social environment, and good medical and health services are the top three contributing factors for Auckland retaining third spot in the global rankings.”

This year, Mercer introduced a separate ranking on city sanitation, which analysed cities’ waste removal and sewage infrastructure, levels of infectious disease, air pollution, water availability and quality.

Auckland ranked 5th and Wellington 6th in sanitation, with Honolulu taking first place, followed by Helsinki and Ottawa sharing second place.

“With Auckland and Wellington’s air and water quality being among the world’s cleanest, compared to some other popular expat destinations, it means that New Zealand becomes more attractive for global talent,” said Lewington.


Here’s why we think Auckland deserves it’s third-place ranking.

  1. Beaches – Never have a city’s residents been so spoilt for choice for a stunning array of freely accessible beaches. Within an hours drive from Auckland CBD Aucklanders can frolic on the west coast’s black sand beaches of Piha, Karekare and Muriwai, enjoy inner harbour Mission Bay or head out northeast to pink sand Pakiri.
  2. Food – Forget about fine dining, multicultural Auckland has clusters of affordable ethnic restaurants dotted around the ithmus serving authentic and downright tasty food.
  3. Festivals – Every year thousands flock to a multitude of festivals embracing Auckland’s myriad ethnicities, for starters there’s Diwali, the Chinese Lantern Festival and Pasifika Festival.
  4. Village people – Although Auckland has a CBD, the sprawling city maintains a village feel. Titirangi village in the Waitakeres is far removed from Newmarket shopping precinct as is Mangere’s street life community feel.
  5. Cone heads – Rome has its seven hills, Rio has Corcovado Mountain and Cape Town Table Mountain, but Auckland has 48 maunga, or volcanic cones.
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More money to support immigrant women


More money to support immigrant women

More money to support immigrant women

In the federal budget for 2018, the government of Canada has committed historic amounts of money to help women enter the workforce. This includes more than $30 million specifically dedicated to helping newcomer women with finding employment in Canada!

Canada’s federal budget was released on February 27th, 2018. The budget is strongly committed to supporting equality between men and women, including a number of measures to support women who want to join the workforce. The government recognizes that immigrant women have unique needs when they arrive in Canada. For this reason, the government has dedicated $31.8 million for programs to help newcomer women of visible minority communities.

The government has promised funds to help newcomer women gain the skills needed to find work in Canada. One program supported by the funds will be language training. The funds will also support affordable childcare, so mothers can ensure their children are well cared for while they are working. While the government has not released full details about all programs supported by the funds, it is clear that immigrant women will have incredible opportunities in Canada in the coming years!

“Employment is key to the successful integration of newcomers to Canada, supporting their financial independence and allowing them to make social connections and retain and build job skills,” the government states in the federal budget. “However, newcomers sometimes face significant barriers to finding and keeping good jobs, including language challenges, lack of Canadian experience, a lack of social networks and, in some cases, discrimination.” With the dedication of these new funds, newcomer women will be able to overcome these hurdles and establish successful lives in Canada!


In addition to the measures specific to women, the federal budget also outlined nearly $440 million to support Canada’s increased immigration quotas. The government has committed to welcoming almost 1 million new immigrants over the next three years. By directing nearly half a billion dollars of funding towards immigration, Canada is proving its dedication to new immigrants.

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