Election surveys show that 14% of Canadians consider reducing immigration as a major problem
As Canada approaches a federal election quickly, immigration is a low priority when it comes to how Canadians cast their votes.
According to an election poll by Ipsos for Global News and La Presse received immigration among the fewest voices when it came to which election question most influenced the electoral decision of respondents.
In the survey, respondents were asked to pick three topics that matter most to them when it comes to how they want to vote.
Other topics that respondents might choose are:
- health care
- Affordability and cost of living
- climate Change
- The economy
- Poverty and social inequality
- Senior citizens problems / aging population
- Corruption and ethics in government
- Government deficits / debts
- Unemployment / Jobs
It (immigration) is one of those issues that will not be the most important issue, such as health care or, for example, affordability.Darrell Bricker, CEO of Ipsos Public Affairs
So, what were the top topics?
Healthcare was at the top with 35 percent, affordability and the cost of living at 27 percent, climate change at 25 percent and the economy at 24 percent. Immigration received 14% of the vote.
The survey also found that those who pointed out that immigration is a key electoral issue are more concerned with reducing immigration than with improving the process or recruiting more newcomers.
Among those who chose immigration as their top priority, 49% agreed that Canada accepted too many immigrants, 31% were concerned about irregular border crossings and 6% had concerns about Canada's role in assisting in the current refugee crisis. Only five percent felt that Canada should increase immigration.
However, this rhetoric against immigration was not consistent among respondents across the country.
The province of Quebec had the highest number of votes (17%) for reducing immigration across Canada and least of all for Atlantic Canada.
The survey also found that Canadians who are conservative or in favor of the People's Party of Canada (PPC) or the Quebecois bloc tend to regard immigration as a priority in these elections.
The Conservative Party has yet to comment on where the party stands on immigration policy. However, the PPC has published its desire to reduce immigration to Canada as a whole.
The Liberal Party, which is currently in power, has also not officially released its election platform, but can prove that it supports immigration. In fact, by the end of 2018, the Liberal government announced its intention to increase Canada's immigration year-on-year the next three years The majority of these new immigrants will arrive as part of economic immigration programs that address gaps and skills shortages in the Canadian labor market.
Arghavan Gerami is the founder and senior counsel of Gerami Law Professional Corporation (PC), a full-service immigration law firm in Ottawa, Ontario. Since 2011, Ms. Gerami has been active in the areas of immigration and refugee disputes. Previously, Ms. Gerami worked in the Department of Justice and Ministry of Justice and was privileged to serve Mr. Judge M. Evans at the Federal Appeals Tribunal for Immigration and Administrative Appeals. Ms. Gerami is a member of the Immigration Law Division of the Canadian Bar Association, the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Ms Gerami has also published numerous articles in peer-reviewed journals and lectured at several immigration and refugee law conferences and events across Canada.
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