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Welcome new HIPC staff member! 

HIPC welcomes a new team member this week! Mohammad Araf is our new Program Officer – Immigration. Please call him Araf. Araf has a background in community-based research in the non-profit sector and postsecondary institutions in Toronto and Hamilton. His Master’s work in International Development focused on the settlement trajectories of refugees in Toronto. Araf has co-authored several research studies on issues affecting vulnerable populations, including newcomers.
 
After moving to Hamilton in 2017, Araf says he has fallen in love with the city, especially its vibrant downtown and beautiful waterfalls. He loves to hike on Tews Falls lookout trail and watch the sunset on Dundas Peak.
 
Araf looks forward to working with Hamilton’s diverse communities and groups. He sees this as important work that continues to inspire change in the lives of newcomers in the city. Stay tuned to hear from him about several projects that relate to HIPC’s new theory of change. 
 
Please extend a warm welcome to Araf!

You can reach him by email at Mohammad.Araf@Hamilton.ca.

 

Throne Speech highlights on Immigration and Systemic Racism 
Yesterday the Governor General of Canada delivered a much anticipated Speech from the Throne to mark the second session of the 43rd Parliament. It was no surprise the that contents of the speech, penned by the Prime Minister’s Office, focused largely on addressing the pandemic and working towards recovery.

Included in the speech were references to the continued importance of immigration as a driver of Canada’s economic growth – both for short-term economic recovery and as part of a long-term growth plan -- and also to the urgent need to combat systemic racism.

Regarding immigration, the speech called for easier access to Canadian citizenship and made note of the Government’s plans to grant permanent residency to temporary foreign workers providing care in long-term care homes and other medical facilities. It also stated that Canada will continue to welcome newcomers and support family reunification, noted the “economic and human advantage to having families together.”
The speech went on to note that COVID-19 has hit racialized Canadians especially hard and acknowledged the calls to address this inequity, notably from Indigenous people, and Black and racialized Canadians. The Government pledged to address systemic racism, and promised to take the following steps:
  • Taking action on online hate
  • Going further on economic empowerment for specific communities, and increasing diversity on procurement
  • Building a whole-of-federal-government approach around better collection of disaggregated data
  • Implementing an action plan to increase representation in hiring and appointments, and leadership development within the Public Service
  • Taking new steps to support the artistic and economic contributions of Black Canadian culture and heritage.
The Government also called for reform in the policing and justice systems among those populations that have experienced injustices, naming Black Canadians and Indigenous Peoples, promising to “Introduce legislation and make investments that take action to address the systemic inequities in all phases of the criminal justice system, from diversion to sentencing, from rehabilitation to records.”

Throne speeches are intended to present the legislative agenda of the coming session of Parliament. It is up to the Government and members of Parliament to ensure that these plans are carried out, and to citizens to hold them accountable.

Click here to access the full text of the throne speech.
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Issue #52

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Hamilton Immigration Partnership Council
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Hamilton, ON L8P 4Y5

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