(This column originally appeared in the Toronto Sun)
The Trudeau government is ramming through its plan to boost immigration levels, despite survey after survey showing that Canadians oppose this idea.
An Angus Reid poll from August 2018 found that half of Canadians want lower immigration compared to only 6% who want increased numbers. Likewise, another Angus Reid poll from earlier that month, which focused on illegal immigration, found that two-thirds of Canadians believe we accept too many asylum seekers.
These numbers represent the lowest public approval of Canada’s immigration program since pollsters started tracking this data in the 1970s.
While public opinion on immigration has hit an all-time low, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is boosting immigration to an all-time high.
The Liberal government announced its annual immigration targets this week — unveiling an aggressive plan to boost immigration numbers to the highest levels in modern Canadian history.
By 2021, the Liberals plan to welcome 350,000 new permanent residents per year.
Under Trudeau’s plan, Canada will add a city the size of Victoria, B.C., London, Ont., or two Prince Edward Islands each and every year.
The Liberals will have welcomed 1.3 million new permanent residents in by 2021, the equivalent of the city of Calgary or the province of Manitoba within the next three years.
Trudeau’s plan will bring in more people than the current populations of Yukon, Nunavut, Northwest Territories, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador and New Brunswick, combined.
New permanent residents are just half the equation. The Trudeau government also plans to boost the number of temporary foreign workers to 250,000 per year.
When we add together permanent residents, temporary workers, foreign students and other long-term visitors, Canada will welcome roughly three-quarters of a million people into our country each year.
That’s more than 2% of our total population.
Where will these newcomers live? Will they disperse across our vast country, or, like most newcomers over the past few decades, will they join the already congested major cities?
Will these newcomers learn English or French and adopt a Canadian identity? Will they learn about Canadian history, will they celebrate our culture and adopt our values?
Or, will they follow Justin Trudeau’s cue that Canada is a “post-national state” with “no core identity”? Will they live in isolated communities and fail to learn English or become economically self-sufficient?
Trudeau has created a toxic brew when it comes to immigration. He’s flung the door wide open, repeatedly inviting the world to come to Canada on social media.
His government has welcomed and even helped to facilitate the stream of illegal border crossers coming in from the United States; a problem that those same Angus Reid polls show two-thirds of Canadians describe as a “crisis” and 70% do not trust Trudeau to fix.
Alongside the Trudeau government’s unwillingness to protect our borders, Trudeau has embraced a postmodern attitude that neglects the Canadian identity and downplays the importance of integration.
Canada has long been a country made up of different people from different parts the world who came to Canada for new hope and opportunity. Immigrants from all backgrounds worked hard and come together over our shared values and way of life.
Canadians are intrinsically open to immigration and welcoming to newcomers, so long as they are willing to work hard, play by the rules and embrace our Canadian values.
Trudeau’s immigration and integration policies are testing the limits of Canadian openness and generosity. Canadians want a responsible, rules-based immigration program…(READ MORE)