B.C. court sentences nine in immigration fraud that faked applications for over 1,600 people
A B.C. court has handed down sentences to nine individuals involved in
The most recent sentence handed down was announced by The Canada Border Services Agency and the Canada Revenue Agency. Xia Feng was sentenced to 20 months in jail and ordered to pay $44,659 in fines for participating in the overall scam which pulled in an estimated $10 million.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s legislation on reducing immigration from the United States has been ineffective, according to data obtained by the Toronto Star.
The immigration statistics reveal that only 400 asylum claims have been rejected. As a result of this, the policy has been deemed largely inadequate, and a long way off from the refugee deterrence that the Liberals had hoped to achieve through this policy, created in June of 2018.
Since 2017, over 50,000 refugees crossed the border from the United States to Canada. And as of September 2019, 29,000 asylum claims are still to be considered—thus making the 400 rejected relatively minuscule number.
Human rights groups, who were previously critical of the Liberal’s legislation, were pleased by the number of rejected applicants.
Due to Liberal legislation containing few systematic reforms to the education system, the legislation was largely seen as a general “bugger off” to those wishing to claim refugee status, rather than a concrete ruling that would stop the flow.
As well as this, the federal government will not deport individuals to a swath of countries that are considered too dangerous.
The federal government wants to introduce an immigration program in order to let certain cities and areas bring in new immigrants by taking local labour demands into account.
In the electoral campaign the Trudeau government said that they would be introducing the system. The person Prime Minister Trudeau designated for the job is Marco Mendico, a new immigration minister.
The goal of the program is to put some of the decision making abilities in the hands of local communities based on their needs. Trudeau’s mandate letter noted that there will be more than 5,000 spaces created by implementing the new program.
According to CBC, Mendico said that the program helps “to draw on local experiences, expertise, capacities to understand where are the labour shortages, where are the economic opportunities and how that information can help us select individuals who wish to come to Canada to ply their trade, to fulfil their opportunity.”
The current ratio of workers to retirees in Canada is 4:1 according to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). By 2035 that ratio is expected to drop to 2:1.
In the past ten years about three quarters of the population growth in Canada has been due to immigration. The IRCC projects that by 2031, this number will rise to 80 percent.
Similar programs have been put forward to bring newcomers into rural areas and Atlantic Canada to fill job positions.
Leah Nord, who works for the Canadian Chamber of Commerce as director of workforce strategies and inclusive growth, noted that there are labour gaps throughout the country. She added that close to 500,000 job positions are not being filled.
Many immigrants end up in Canada’s major cities and this program is meant to bring and keep skilled workers in smaller communities.
Nord told CBC, “One of the greatest ways to ensure immigration integration is a success is to have a job, to have labour market integration,” she added. “And that comes from the employer, from the chambers, from the business point of view. Having them involved in the beginning and making them those liaisons is key to success.”
She explained that a lot of immigrants will be able to “hit the ground running” by having job opportunities when they arrive.
Chief economist of The Conference Board of Canada, Pedro Antunes, mentioned that with ageing populations, immigrants will play a critical role in the labour market in Canada.
Antunes said, “The economic migrants play a big, big role … in helping us grow our workforce at a time when, if not for immigration, we’d actually be seeing a decline in the number of workers in Canada.”
According to the Conference Board, by 2030, the number of baby boomers reaching retirement age will be over nine million.
Mendicino’s mandate letter also says “This continues our modest and responsible increases to immigration, with a focus on welcoming highly skilled people who can help build a stronger Canada.”
Mendico is planning to review outcomes based on data and will be working directly with Canada’s provinces and territories.
At least two U.S. churches are making a statement with their nativity scenes this year. One of them is the Claremont United Methodist Church in California and the other is St. Susanna Parish in Massachusetts. The Claremont church seems to be alluding to Trump’s immigration policies, while St. Susanna Parish is taking a stance on climate change.
In a tweet by American journalist, Anthony Breznican, you can see members of the holy family inside chain-link cages. Baby Jesus is in a cage of his own while Joseph and Mary stand on either side of him, also in cages.
The scene does not specifically include any mention of Trump, though many think that the message is implied.
The church has a congregation of about 300 members and there are mixed responses about the church taking a political stance. One Twitter user said, “This is sacrilegious and blasphemous. Politicizing a nativity scene for the of social justice should list high in a book ‘you just don’t do it.’ The priest that okayed this should be stripped of his title and disgraced.”
Rev. Karen Clark Ristine, of the church noted, “This is a sacred family to us. We hold this family dear. And part of our vision is that they’re standing in for all the nameless others. For us, this is theological, this is not political.”
St. Susanna Parish in Dedham, Massachusetts has also included a theme in their nativity scene. The theme they chose to touch on is climate change. The scene shows everybody standing knee-deep in trash-filled water while some surrounding animals are fully submerged. A baby Jesus can be seen floating amidst everyone. The scene is accompanied by a banner saying “God so loved the world… will we?”
Some controversy has arisen out of the nativity scene. Father Stephen Josoma, the church’s pastor, says he’s not sure adding the climate change theme is politicizing the scene.
Father Stephen told WCVB, “We’re just painting an accurate picture of what the world is like this day.”
He told Boston 25 News, “It’s not a future event that may or may not happen,” also noting, “I think we have to kind of gather people’s awareness to bring about a change of mind and heart.”
The response has been mixed for parishioners, including Pat Ferrone who said, “Jesus was born into the circumstances of his time,” he went on to say, “You can’t pick up the paper or magazine or whatever without learning something dire.”
Some people were for the statement, such as Maureen Adams who wrote in a Facebook post, “Good for them for taking an ethical stand for humanity and the state of the world. Isn’t that what Jesus would do?”
Another Facebook user disagreed posting, “Trying to make a point, each year, with the Nativity is horrible. Hopefully one day it will be realized that this is offensive to some. Trying to gain publicity over something so sacred is blasphemous.”
One woman who told WCVB that she has stopped attending the church due to the views held by the pastor. She said, “I think he’s a snowflake. There’s a lot of people that don’t want to go in that church anymore because they’re tired of hearing liberal views.”
This isn’t the first time Josoma has tried to send a message with his nativity scene. Last year the church-based their theme on the migrant crisis, showing Jesus and his family in cages. The year before, they displayed mass-shooting victims alongside the family.
Another community member, Mike Looby, told Boston 25 News, “I don’t think it’s a good idea to mix those two topics together. It’s in bad taste.”
Family who moved to Canada with $48, makes the largest single donation to Scarborough Health Network
A family who emigrated to Canada 50 years ago with only $48 in their pocket has made the largest single donation in the history of the Scarborough Health Network’s history, according to CTV News.
Moving to Canada in 1972, Deepa and Narinder Lal worked numerous odd jobs, before saving up enough money to found a company called Metro Label from their basement. Metro Label managed to become one of North America’s largest label making companies.
Speaking to CTV News, the Deepa and Narinder Lal’s children said that they hoped that “this will start a trend of other people donating to Scarborough institutions.”
They went on to say that “there are a lot of immigrants in the Scarborough area and many of them did well and we are hoping that we can provide some leadership for these people to donate.”
Despite donating a vast sum of money, the Lal’s have requested that the precise amount of their multi-million dollar donation be hidden from public knowledge.
In response to their donation, the Scarborough Health Network General hospital renamed their emergency room, the Deepa & Narinder Lal Emergency.