The Bull Meter: Jack Layton on the Conservatives' immigration record -

The Bull Meter: Jack Layton on the Conservatives’ immigration record


[mac_quote person=”Jack Layton” date=”April 12, 2011″]One of the most disturbing aspects of what the Harper government is doing is that they’re encouraging more and more people to come here as temporary foreign workers… What we’re seeing is more and more of this focus on the immigrant as some kind of an economic unit.[/mac_quote]

Layton is right here. The face of Canadian immigration is changing, and it’s tilting toward economic considerations. According to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) if you look at permanent residents by category between 2006 and 2010, the only class that grew was the economic migrant class, from 138,251 in 2006 to 186,881 in 2010. Compare that to the number of refugees admitted: there’s been a decline since 2006, from 32,499 back then to 24,693 last year. Family reunification migrants have also been falling away, from 70,517 in 2006 to 60,207 in 2010.

Layton is also speaking no bull about the fact that temporary foreign workers have been a growing presence in Canada. According to CIC, in 2000, there were 116,540. In 2005, pre-Harper, there were 122,694, and then in 2009, there were 178,478. Last year, Statistics Canada reported that the number of temporary foreign workers admitted to Canada has been rising faster than the number of people admitted temporarily for other reasons with “three consecutive years of double-digit growth.” Whether or not this is “disturbing,” as Layton says it is, is a matter of interpretation. But the man’s got his facts straight.

Heard something that doesn’t sound quite right? Send quotes from the campaign trail to and we’ll tell you just how much bull they contain.


Citizenship and immigration Canada Facts and Figures

Citizenship and Immigration Canada Permanent and temporary residents, 2010

Statistics Canada, temporary foreign workers

Statistics Canada, foreign nationals working temporarily in Canada


The Bull Meter: Jack Layton on the Conservatives’ immigration record

  1. Where are the bulls even if he received 0?

  2. "All our bulls are presently unavailable due to the immense order of BS from The Harper Government TM. Kudos to Layton will be with you shortly."

  3. Er, this is a little embarassing to admit, but our code was never programmed to accept '0' as a Bull Meter rating. (I'm not even kidding.) I don't know if that says more about this election or us. Working on a fix right now.

  4. Worth noting: when Harper was first elected MP, his party's platform called for radical decrease in the number of immigrants to Canada, and opposed "any immigration based on race or creed or designed to radically or suddenly alter the ethnic makeup of Canada"

  5. There have been numerous articles praising Canada's immigration policies:

    "Professor Stephen Castles, an immigration expert at the University of Sydney, commented: “Canada has been very successful in achieving economic and demographic growth through a balanced, long-term immigration policy. For both economic and humanitarian immigrants, subsequent entry of close family members is encouraged, and seen as crucial to immigrants' long-term commitment to Canada.

    However, Canada has always balanced immigration quotas with economic needs and community concerns. That is no doubt one important reason for the broad popular support for immigration in Canada."

  6. LOL.

    All your bulls are belong to us.

  7. "the immigrant as some kind of an economic unit."

    Except they aren't robots….or plug-in parts.

    What idiot decided to cut off family members??

  8. This is almost as suspicious as when Harper was the name that could not be named.
    computers are hard.

  9. Oh yeah. That was my fault, too. I was trying to ban the spammer that keeps posting that "CRUSH HARPER" nonsense, but configured the filter in a way that it was picking up either word rather than only when they're used together. As you can see, I'm not actually very good at this.

  10. Thanks for anointing this with a coveted 'no bull' sign, Phil.

  11. "cut off family members"

    So we're neutering our immigrants now? Good to know! LOL!

    (Sorry; it was too good to let slide…)

  12. This bull reading is correct.

    But at the same time, in a country with so many social programs such as universal medicare and welfare, newly arriving immigrants are an economic liability unless they bring something to the table when they arrive, whether it's education or entrepreneurship or something else. So it's not the conservatives who created the issue of examining the economic impacts. In fact, it's often leftists who create barriers to entry because they're afraid of the negative impact on socialist programs.

  13. LOLOL

  14. Takes fortitude to own your shortcomings in front of everybody. You're doing a better job than I could.

  15. One bull allocated for each of the last five years that leftists were not in a position to create meaningful barriers to entry.

    That's FIVE.

  16. Hee hee!

    Move "Ig" for great justice!

  17. In retrospect, I should have gone with "Someone set up us the Bloc!"

  18. Well, it may not be that you are not good, but rather that you need better support.

    My observation is that there is no computer snafu that a marketing genius cannot make into a feature.

  19. I have 10 years experience dealing with this country's immigration system. I once spoke with a Kuwaiti man, unemployed, who had 21 children here with 3 wives (welcome to Canada). He told me the thing he likes best about Canada is that "if you have no money they send you a cheque in the mail!" And with all those kids he was cleaning up. I've met hundreds more like him. Why work when you earn more here on welfare than you ever would back home? If you're already used to communal living and doing without luxuries, even modest welfare is a leg up. The problem is that we don't need to import welfare lifers. Yes, most immigrants make a net contribution, but ALL should. Why should taxpayers subsidize the world's laziest people? And, I note with dismay, when I was a kid there were no Vietnamese or Chinese or Russian or Somali or Afghani gangs roaming our streets. Decent, hardworking, law-abiding immigrants are as frustrated with the system as anyone else, but politicians are so afraid to tackle these problems for fear of being labelled a racist (I will no doubt receive some of the same from the illiterate) that nothing gets done. Long story short: economic migrants are AOK with me.

  20. Depends, I guess, on how you define family members. Temporary Foreigh Workers can bring immediate family (spouse, children under I think it's 21 if students, 18 or 19 if not) and spouse granted a limited work permit (can't work with children or in medical field unless they have criminal background checks & full medicals). I believe children old enough to work can also get a limited work permit.

    Parents & siblings not included as family.

    Jack is BSing and I'm calling "BULL" on the "NO BULL" call of this post. Deserves probably 2 bulls for the misleading interpretation of "family." Last night in the debate, Jack implied they couldn't bring ANYONE, which is pure and unadulterated BS.

  21. The no extended family portion of the Temporary Foreign Worker program has been in place prior to a CPC gov't. I know, because at work, I help bring in engineers and other professionals under this program, and have since PMPM was in charge (using the term "in charge" loosely).

  22. Good idea…let's let every immigrant who makes it to Canada bring their aging parents and grandparents over. We'll give them "free" health care and social assistance. They have never paid taxes here, nor contributed to Canada, but lets give them a warm welcome in any event.
    The rest of us….hmm….guess we'll just have to be satisfied knowing our two year wait for hip surgery is for a worthy cause.

  23. We all know who's been in a position to change the policy for the last five years. As far as where the policy originated, I'm afraid I have to reject the Conservative assertion that all parties to their left are leftists.

  24. Oh trust me, it's not the illiterate that are going to call you a racist.

  25. Now THAT is just plain ignorant. You don't get to sponsor anyone into this country unless you are capable of being financially responsible for them for three years. And you're not going to pull that off on the dole.

  26. MTB……you are a fool.

    Many immigrants who sponsor their families here cannot afford to pay $100,000 for heart surgery, or any other medical care. Regardless of what you believe, health care is NOT FREE…someone pays for it. That someone, is you and me. Do you really think we will let old folks croak because their family can't fork out the money to pay for their care?

  27. as for the three year rule….what happens in the fourth year? Has every elderly immigrant in poor health suddenly become healthy? Has health care suddenly become truly free?

    You're ability to process complexity is astounding.

  28. Annually, Canada accepts tens of thousands of elderly, sickly immigrants, as part of family reunification efforts. This is an actuarial disaster. One heavilly-represented group (South Asians) has DOUBLE Canada's national rate of type-II diabetes. And then there's the matter of the Liberal Bill C-428, which would extend OAS eligibility to Indian, Pakistani, Sri Lankan, Chinese and other immigrants (countries with no reciprocal treaties, and essentially one-sided immigration flows) after a mere THREE YEAR residency period. We simply can't afford more family reunification–If extended families are so important to would-be immigrants, they can stay with their relatives in their own countries.

  29. What's the rationale for changing the TFW policy of immediate family? Nothing stops them from sponsoring parents & siblings once they've got citizenship. Yes, it takes longer. But as noted elsewhere on this thread, bringing in the elderly is an actuarial problem with our already challenged healthcare & CPP.

    Jack's assertion that TFW's come ALONE with NOBODY is BS. That was my point. I wasn't saying that they can bring in parents, grandparents, uncles & aunts, nor do I necessarily think they should.

    If it's famine or other issues they are leaving, they come under refugee status where few (any?)are turned back.

  30. Both are being stupid. Yes, temporary foreign workers as economic units sounds immoral, BUT immigration in Canada was, and is, framed around economic demands. More emphasis is needed in permanent residency. Canada accepts most immigrants under the economic class, hence the POINTS SYSTEM! But permanent resident status is overlooked. Harper's not being progressive about immigration, but Layton's also just attacking, rather than being pragmatic about the issue.

  31. Immigration policy is Layton's Achilles heel!

    He is saying we are slow to bring the aging parents of new citizens to Canada. Yet, our Medic Clinics are well represented by walk in foreign seniors.

    At my particular clinic, 4 of 5 new immigrant seniors require eye surgery within the first 2 years. Their health care takes another 2 years to play catch up.

    Frankly Mr. Layton, we cannot afford to bring the Mom and Pops into the country for medical overhauls. You on the other hand can afford to talk you daughter over to see grandma.

  32. I for one do not want to see any immigrants or migrants entering the country until we've taken care of those Canadians currently living here. We've got some serious work to bring our healthcare back up to standard, our seniors need help, our education facilities are in dire need of repair, infrastructure across the country is in shambles and we need to focus internally to fix those issues. I'm not concern about foreigners and neither should Layton. They don't pay taxes in this country, we do. If he want my vote, he'll have to change his priorities. As it is, I feel like there is no party that represents my priorities. I am concerned about Canada, Canadians and protecting want we have, not giving it to migrants or immigrants.

  33. I for one do not want to see any immigrants or migrants entering the country until we%E2%80%99ve taken care of those Canadians currently living here. We%E2%80%99ve got some serious work to bring our healthcare back up to standard, our seniors need help, our education facilities are in dire need of repair, infrastructure across the country is in shambles and we need to focus internally to fix those issues. I%E2%80%99m not concern about foreigners and neither should Layton. They don%E2%80%99t pay taxes in this country, we do. If he want my vote, he%E2%80%99ll have to change his priorities. As it is, I feel like there is no party that represents my priorities. I am concerned about Canada, Canadians and protecting want we have, not giving it to migrants or immigrants.

  34. I believe that Canada is not stupid enough to allow FW to come if they are not benefiting from it. Foreign Workers come here to work, help build Canada's economy and if their pay-off is to enjoy the fruits of their labor in end, I think is just fair and just. Refugees of course is a different story. The Harper Administration in my opinion is just smart enough to allow FW to come with the end in mind of using these people's expertise and skills to meet the growing economic demand of Canada and give them a chance to live in this country once they are stable and have adjusted and adapted to Canada's way of life. I think proper assessment must still be used as primary consideration in allowing a FW to enter the country.

  35. Thousands of the temporary workers are migrants from the islands that do farm work that lazy Canadians won't consider doing.

  36. downtown toronto is awash with immigrants.. Most now are muslim. From my personal experience, they have to no wish whatsoever to accept Canadian values. Their first and primary allegiance is not to Canada, but to their religion…. The sad part is they are, to a great extent, supported by and given government monies to further this position.. Ask all levels of government to stopping funding this racism. I am a disabled senior. Why wont the government agencies who fund racists at New Hibret Coop. enforce the law.. why are they afraid to stop racists. is it because the racists are Ethiopian Muslims.? I invite Macleans or any other agency interested in the truth to contact me.

  37. I`m an immigrant from Colombia. I don`t accept mr Layton arguments, there`re millions of people waiting in line to come to this country. Canada should favour, as Mr Harper is doing, the ones that bring something to the country.

    It`s like any relationship, on one hand the immigrant (resident) receives something very valuable (a first-class citizenship after 3 years of living within the law), a salary many times higher than the one of his original country (even if it`s the minimum wage).

    In return, it should be able to contribute to the economy through his taxes and work.

  38. What did he say that was racist?

  39. well said