Canadians' View on Immigration
It's a pretty common thing to say here in the US: when some national event happens that is contrary to our liking, the first comment usually is, "That's it! I'm moving to Canada!" While few people in the US have called their bluff and actually did it, there are many residents of other British commonwealth countries who have decided to forego US immigration and instead have headed into to our neighbor to the north.
How exactly do Canadians feel about this?
Amazingly, despite the news broadcasts, Canadians actually don't feel that immigration has manifested in large figures in recent years, plus they truly seem to be taking a strong stance on helping refugees compared to the past 20 years.
According to Pew figures, there were 7.8 million people living in Canada in 2017 that were born in other countries. The most common places of origin making up this cumulative total are China (710,000), The UK (620,000) and India (600,000). Those born in the U.S. account for roughly 310,000. Generally speaking, Canada is seen around the world as a country that is immigration friendly, with current prime minister, Justin Trudeau, saying as recently as February this year that Canada is open to immigration and trade.
How though, do the people of Canada feel about immigration and has how has this changed over the years? Looking back to the 1990's, the sentiment towards the issue was markedly different to that of today. An Environics Institute longitudinal survey, as reported on by The Globe and Mail reveals that, since a low in 1994 of 26 percent, the majority of Canadians in 2018 (60 percent) do not agree that immigration levels are too high. Likewise, a similar change can be observed in the responses to whether most refugee claimants are genuine or not. From a low in 1994 of 11 percent, the prevailing opinion in the country is now one of trust - 45 percent say they think such claimants are legitimate, compared to 38 percent that think refugees are usually lying about their situation in order to gain entry.
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