News from British and Canadian Conservatives

Friday, September 05, 2008

Conservative Immigration Policy: Common Sense all round

As a recent immigrant to Canada, I find it very hard to disagree with anything the Prime Minister has to say on this topic. It's an issue on which the Conservative Party of Canada stands alone against a Liberal-Left consensus which claims to support immgrants, but actually holds both them and the Canadian economy back.

There are few things that the last Liberal Government of Canada screwed up more than immigration. In a desparate bid to retain power, they sought to appeal to Immigrant communities by reducing the number of points required to qualify for the skilled worker immigration program. That was all well and good, but they didn't match that action with the funding required to deal with all the extra people who were able to apply through that route, which is why people seeking to move to Canada now have to wait up to 8 years before they are allowed in.

It isn't much use to the families who want to make Canada their new home, as they are left in limbo for years on end.

It isn't much use to the Canadian economy or employers, who are crying out for workers with certain skills. The time delay means that the people arriving in Canada today often have the skills that were required years ago, and the people who are applying now with the skills Canadian companies need now won't arrive for years to come.

Yet, when it came to fixing Canada's broken immigration system, all of the opposition parties opposed the very sensible Conservative proposals. In the end, they were forced through this year as part of the budget. As that was a confidence vote, the Liberals were forced to abstain to avoid forcing an election which they knew they would lose. The NDP and Bloc wouldn't support the plan either. The parties of the old left decided that it was better to scaremonger, in an attempt to solidify the immigrant vote, which they seem to think is theirs by right.

So what does the new Canadian immigration system mean? It provides the responsible minister the power to set a list of skills which will get an applicant's immigration fast tracked, ahead of those who do not have the right skills. It replaces the current system which requires Immigration Canada to process all applications in the order they were received, regardless of the skills possessed by the people applying. It is an end to the system that has left Canada with skills shortages, and highly qualified immigrants driving taxis or stocking shelves at WalMart. It's a sensible solution for all concerned, and should serve up as a wake up call to all Liberal/NDP voting immigrants. Now is the time to make a stand and vote Conservative.

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