Jul 17, 2024

Former Governor General Adrienne Clarkson co-founded the Institute for Canadian Citizenship.

Results of a recent survey should get Canada worried.

As a nation that prides itself on welcoming immigrants, the poll indicated that a substantial number of newcomers are facing a crisis of confidence in their adopted country.

The survey was conducted by Leger, the biggest Canadian-owned market research and analytics company.

The poll was done on behalf of the Institute for Canadian Citizenship, a charity that serves as the country’s foremost voice on citizenship and inclusion.

Here are highlights of the results released by ICC on March 23, 2022:

  • 30 percent of 18–34-year-old new Canadians and 23 percent of university-educated new Canadians say they are likely to move to another country in the next two years.
  • While most Canadians and new immigrant Canadians alike believe that Canada provides immigrants with a good quality of life, Canadians have a much more positive outlook on Canada’s immigration policy compared to new Canadian immigrants.
  • New Canadian immigrants are more likely to believe that Canadians don’t understand the challenges that immigrants face and feel the rising cost of living will make immigrants less likely to stay in Canada.
  • Immigrants with university degrees tend to have less favourable opinions on matters related to fair job opportunities and pay than other immigrants.
  • Among those who would not recommend Canada as a place to live, current leadership and the high cost of living were the top two reasons.

The ICC is an organization co-founded and co-chaired by Adrienne Clarkson and John Ralston Saul.

Clarkson served as the 26th Governor General of Canada from 1999 to 2005.

Saul, for his part, is an award-winning essayist and novelist.

In a media release on March 23, ICC CEO Daniel Bernhard noted that Canadians like to tell themselves that they are welcoming to new immigrants.

“But while this may be generally true, new survey data points to the fact that many new Canadians are having a crisis of confidence in Canada — and that should be ringing alarm bells all over Ottawa,” Bernhard stated.

Leger executive vice-president Dave Scholz said that the data suggest that “younger, highly skilled immigrants, in particular, are starting to fall between the cracks”.

“We need to continue working hard to ensure that we are welcoming newcomers with the resources they need to succeed and that we continue to be a country that provides an opportunity,” Scholz said.

In 2021, the country met its target of welcoming 401,000 new permanent residents.

That’s the most number in a single year in its history.

Canada has set an even more ambitious goal for the next three years.

The country aims to welcome 431,645 new permanent residents in 2022, 447,055 in 2023, and 451,000 in 2024.

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