Immigrant Integration in Canada: Policy Objectives, Program Delivery and Challenges

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Org: Integration Branch, Citizenship and Immigration Canada
Date: 2001

This document explores Canada's immigrant integration strategy, providing a historical context to the originals of ISAP and HOST programs, funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). The document looks at:

  • Integration Policy Objectives
  • Settlement and Integration Programs and Services
  • Partnerships and Collaboration
  • Program Administration
  • Benefits of Immigration
  • Barriers to Integration
  • Defining Success - Measuring Integration Outcomes
  • Future Directions

This Federal Immigrant Integration Strategy is defined as:

"Newcomers are expected to understand and respect basic Canadian values, and Canadians are expected to understand and respect the cultural differences newcomers bring to Canada. Rather than expecting newcomers to abandon their own cultural heritage, the emphasis is on finding ways to integrate differences in a pluralistic society...

The Federal Immigrant Integration Strategy places an emphasis on helping immigrants to learn about Canadian values and on helping Canadians understand the diverse backgrounds of newcomers, by making additional resources available for existing programs and introducing new initiatives. In this broader view, integration is a continuum. It is a process that begins when an immigrant first applies, and a refugee is first selected, to come to Canada, and it continues in the early days and months after arrival, up to and beyond the time he or she acquires citizenship and achieves full participation in Canadian society."

The document concludes with a call to continued evaluation and assessment of the strategy: "Recognizing the positive benefits that immigrants bring to Canada, there is much that we still need to learn about absorptive capacity and the impact of immigration at the micro level. What are the impacts of immigration and population growth on urban planning and sustainable development? Research alone cannot answer these questions. Solutions will depend greatly on our ability to work collaboratively with our partners at various levels to continue to remain cognisant of and to address the integration barriers outlined above. In order to maintain public support for the Immigration Program as a whole, it remains a necessary priority for CIC to continue to assess what is working and where we can do more. We need to continue to explore opportunities to fully address any unmet needs of newcomers to Canada in order to ensure their successful settlement and integration into Canadian society."



Format: This document is available for download in Adobe Acrobat PDF format [92 KB, 36 pages].