Today's discussion:

Canadians are turning against immigration. Labour economist Mikal Skuterud on how to reform the system and reverse this trend

Immigration has not been a major dividing line in Canadian politics. But the consensus on the issue may be changing. New data from the Canadian Century Initiative finds that there has been a significant increase in Canadians who believe that Canada has too much immigration. 

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Karen Foster

Yes, enough is enough. It’s not like we have a house, job, etc. just waiting here for them. Their problem is birth control in their own country. We keep taking in the over-spill of population, and they just keep making more. And then they want to change our country to be more like theirs. I live near Wasaga Beach and some set up tents on the beach and used them as bathrooms. Because that’s what they do in their country. NO, keep that crap in their country. If we go to their country, we have to adopt their ways–fine. Then respect this country. We have our own problems with people finding jobs, homes, we don’t more. And NOT on my dime.

13th November 2023 at 8:40 am
Michael F

This is very thinly veiled racism at worst or a terrible level of entitlement at best. If we cut off immigration who is going to toast your bagel at Timmy’s Karen? This has that patina of Don Cherry’s ‘those people’ rant.

13th November 2023 at 11:26 am
John Trainor

It is the refugees who bring race into the equation because most come from countries founded on tribalism….the colonization of North America was an escape from that, a melting pot, but the judeo/christian foundation was common regardless of the country of origin……Islam is not……

13th November 2023 at 1:03 pm
Michael F

What ever happened to:

“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

Or is that only for people who look and think like you?

13th November 2023 at 3:01 pm

Immigration is fine as long as adopt Canadian values. If wish to bring your country here then stay in your country. New country news new you.

13th November 2023 at 8:38 am
Harriet Worden


13th November 2023 at 9:38 am

Immigration is fine. But the rate of immigration should not surpass our ability to provide resources. We need to make it clear to immigrants that Canadians do not tolerate some of their beliefs and norms (for e.g., genital mutilation, females denied education or equality , etc).

13th November 2023 at 10:22 am
rrr zzz

I would be very concerned if the same people that attacked Israel by beheading , Even small children and babies, taking hostage and killing gruesomely. were received into Canada as immigrants having Extremely concerning beliefs against Christians And others who do not share their opinions!

13th November 2023 at 7:58 am
Harriet Worden

Hear, Hear!

13th November 2023 at 9:40 am
Paul Haliburton

Hear hear!

13th November 2023 at 8:17 am
Gordon Divitt

Based on personal experience working with an electrical engineer from Columbia who spoke excellent English, German and, obviously, Spanish we do a pitiful job assisting high skilled immigrants to enter the workforce at appropriate levels

What’s the point of recruiting trained and experienced medical practitioners and watching them end up driving an Uber to support their family. It seems like the medical profession in particular is a closed shop at a time when Canada and every other first world country is desperate for resources. The Federal Government should actively shepherd anyone who is a legal immigrant and is qualified in their home country to get their certification recognized in Canada and be entered into a mentoring scheme to ensure their speedy integration while validating their documentation and skills

13th November 2023 at 11:03 am
John Trainor

So then you are advocating for SELECTIVE immigration because the vast majority of the so called refugees streaming into North America are 30 something males with zero education and few skills other than breeding.

13th November 2023 at 1:14 pm
Gordon Divitt

Selective only in the sense of fitting Canada’s requirements at a particular time. We should not be a receiver of poor and/or downtrodden people as the primary pool of the country’s need for man(person)power but rather hold out the chance for people who will contribute to solving what ever labour shortages we have

Humanitarian inflows should be special cases where their needs are paramount but that in turn would require the Federal Government to be present in their integration for long periods (perhaps decades) to avoid the ghettoization of people from radically different backgrounds than Canada’s

13th November 2023 at 4:01 pm
Michael F

Yes programs like this are in the works. In a great many cases it is the governing professional societies that have thrown up the impossible to satisfy road blocks that prevent foreign trained professionals from entering their occupation in Canada. That being said we should have some system in place to make sure we have qualified people in these positions.

13th November 2023 at 11:41 am
Richard Courtemanche

There is a pattern of government incompetence and deception that imposes on Canadians a “tolerance and accommodation” that many migrants still do not appreciate or respect. It’s invasion rather than assimilation…feeding the alligators resources we don’t have in the hopes of being eaten last.

Generations ago, one might have predicted that foreign feuds would transgress our lands with violent protests. We haven’t seen anything yet.

The global anti-Semitic uproar and activities also provide ideal opportunities, if not the goal, to propagate the caliphate of Islam when Western leaders look on with pusillanimity. Add to that the communist and Islamic federal leaders, and the future of Canadians does not bode well.

13th November 2023 at 9:23 am
Martin MacKinnon

Here in Cape breton and Nova Scotia it is clear we need immigration. I realize at the Hub you love controversy, would love to think there is a back lash, but her in Cape Breton and Nova Scotia we welcome them and realize they will help build our economy and our ever changing society

13th November 2023 at 8:21 am

I understand your need and concern but the reality is immigrants are coming in numbers never seen before and apparently distributed around the country. Inevitably, they all end up in the GTA (Toronto) because that is where the major amount of them have collected and have established an area to build on. A lot of them are not interested in the Canadian way and seem to be more interested in spread THEIR way of life in the new country. They are overwhelming the GTA (and Ontario’s) housing, benefits, employment opportunities. unemployment and social assistance programs etc; to the point it is failing in the immigration program, for those that have come here “for a better life” as immigrants have done for centuries. Immigration policies have to change and those not interested in the change to Canadian ways need to either go back to where they came from or accept Canadian ways and values.

13th November 2023 at 9:01 am
Harriet Worden


13th November 2023 at 9:39 am
John Trainor

And as their numbers grow and your’s don’t you will see what Sweden and France are dealing with….i’m sure you’ve got the internet, google up the race riots in Sweden where police and fire can’t venture into certain neighborhoods because they’ll be attacked by Syrian/Moroccan refugees which were generously welcomed into a once peaceful country.

13th November 2023 at 1:11 pm
Harriet Worden

You, & your province are so rich, have affordable homes, have available & affordable health care, have lots of jobs, & can assure all of your fellow Nova Scotians all of the above, then yes, welcome immigrants.

13th November 2023 at 9:52 am

Canada needs competent and passionate trades people more than anything else. It appears to me that most immigrants are not likely to engage in trades.

13th November 2023 at 11:23 am
Michael F

And I think one of the reasons for this is we are a young country with a huge immigrant population. A lot of first and second generation Canadians were channeled into post sedondary education by parents wishing their kids a life they didn’t have. Trades were looked down upon as blue collar work and a unitversity education was considered to be the path to a white collar profession and financial success.

13th November 2023 at 11:44 am
Alfred Napolitano

Additionally, could the change in our historical high appreciation for immigration be due to the change in immigrants? Immigration before the last 10-15 years was multi cultural, but not as multi racial. Could it be that we were more aligned when immigration was mostly white Christian Europeans? I hope not of course, but what about that? I read that a vast majority of new immigrants are non white and non Christian. Again, I hope not but it’s worth asking the country.

Europe and the USA were way ahead of us on this non white no Christian immigration. Perhaps that impacted their views on immigration. I bet we don’t want to ask ourselves this question.

13th November 2023 at 9:54 am
The Hub Staff

Thank you for participating in Hub Forum. The demography of prospective immigrants has shown to vary; you can read more about newcomers that are not sure about staying in Canada:

13th November 2023 at 5:48 pm

Many Canadians do not know that the median age of Canada is 38 and the median age in Africa is 19. If we don’t have immigrants coming to Canada, the discussion will not be about a province leaving CPP but the viability of CPP (just one example) If Canadians want the security nets for their old age, they need young people to keep filling the pool. Immigration is not a maybe but a must.
I am not surprised that first generation children born to Canadian immigrants are opposed immigration. They know their parents came from poverty and oppression and the first generation Canadian born of immigrants have no desire to experience what their parents did. Theirs is a world view built on scarcity which is a world view which many Canadians share with them. As long as we have this world view, polarization, tribalization, fear and rage will galvanize the country. Politicians need to show leadership and end this. They need to give up ideology for good policy which will change the country for the better. They need to be able to pivot when it is demanded.

13th November 2023 at 9:24 am
John Trainor

That’s fine Mr Chezzi, i’m sure you must have a spare bedroom where 3 or 4 30 year old dudes from Sudan could spend the winter.

13th November 2023 at 1:06 pm
Sandra Jeffrey

The diversity of our population in Canada is actually a beautiful thing! The turning point where most Canadians drew the line began likely began as we watched hundreds of immigrants lining up at Roxham Road to cross into our country without any vetting or paperwork! We have a system in place yet it was totally disregarded. Trudeau is not some compassionate leader who sympathized with these poor souls but that’s what he wanted us and the world to believe. Most of us here at home realized this was done for political gain: specifically, vote buying. Humanitarianism be damned!!

13th November 2023 at 2:02 pm

Historically, immigrants have been willing to do work that many (most?) Canadians are unwilling to do, and still are. Where else can we find well-trained doctors from other countries willing to drive taxis here because our system is far too stupid to recognize credentials in this and other sectors desperately short of professionals?

13th November 2023 at 11:25 am
John Trainor

Reality bites……….this is not simply a Canadian reaction, take a look at Sweden, France and many other european countries……look at the States where the Biden debacle has, through inaction, allowed over 5 million illegals to cross into the country, many of those from bad actor countries like Iran and Syria……the vast majority are economic/lifestyle seekers as its estimated 65% are single men under 40 many without education, skills or language. What do you think the outcome of that is? Trudeau has his Roxham Road and is largely to blame for Canadians sick and tired of the turmoil, gangs and anti western norms many refugees bring with them and its a very visible problem.

13th November 2023 at 12:57 pm
Kim Morton

Here on Vancouver Island we have a double whammy of immigration. First, we have immigration from other countries which most of us have no problem with, as long as they accept Canadian values and do not bring their wars with them.
The second class of immigrant is the idle rich from elsewhere in Canada that come here to die because the climate is nice. They do not contribute to the general economy, use far more in healthcare than they ever contributed, push house prices out of reach of our kids, and demand that we change how we live to meet their unique ideas of rural living.

13th November 2023 at 11:48 am
Michael F

The famous Vancouver Island NIMBYism at its finest. Do the people who move there to retire not have the right to live out their retirement somewhere they like? Have they not contributed to Canadian society their whole working lives and deserve a nice retirement? Do they not pay property taxes, income taxes, sales taxes and all the various other taxes? I lived on Vancouver Isalnd briefly and couldn’t believe the selfish NIMBYism and insular attitude of some residents. 13 different municipalities for a population of less than 400,000 in the lower part of the island because everyone wants their own little enclave and not pay for the city problems in Victoria. Island residents couldn’t even agree on a waste water treatment plant until the Feds stepped in.

13th November 2023 at 12:09 pm
Alfred Napolitano

Good Day,

We need to see a trailing twelve year Permanent Resident population chart to properly evaluate the year over year recent historical growth rate and a 6 year projection. This chart takes into account new permanent residences, outgoing permanent residences, and birth rates. Declining birth rates and increasing outward migration may mean that we are not far off our our near term historical rate. In any event, we need the data.

Temporary residents should also be charted by year so we can see what is happening. This is not the same as what we traditionally call immigration.

Lastly, it should be noted that Canada’s historical views on immigration is buoyed by the fact we have extremely low illegal immigration. I believe that our sheltered country helps us stay on board. This isn’t the same for Europe and the USA. We should keep that in mind.

Alfred Napolitano

13th November 2023 at 9:35 am
Matthew David Landberg

Okay, I want to say that I believe that those who come here, embrace of western values including freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of thought and association are welcome here but those who seek to change the country and are ignorant of history or cause trouble in our country from wherever they come from or here on a student visa should have it revoked and send back to where they’ve come from.

13th November 2023 at 6:49 pm
The Hub Staff

Thank you all for participating in Hub Forum and engaging with the article. To learn more about the struggles of balancing immigration with social welfare, check out this Hub Article:

13th November 2023 at 5:51 pm

If you ask the question you are stuck with the answer 🙂 One of my former coworkers who proudly flew a black flag on his pick up with a political statement on it sums it up like this. You know – the immigrants I work with are very polite and helpful. They want to learn our language and better still, they want to know how to do their job better – they show up every day and they work overtime. Maybe we should ship a few born here Canadians to where these folks came from to balance the housing supply

13th November 2023 at 4:26 pm
Michael F

For a country born out of immigration it sures seems more than a little hypocritical that racism in relation to immigration is alive and well here. First it was Catholics, then Eastern and Southern Europeans. Then Asians and non-Christians. Each set of immigrants were made out to be the death of this country with their foreign ways and strange cultural practices. But yet somehow this country managed to grow and thrive. We are in the midst of another growth spurt and are experiencing all the growing pains that go with it.

Many people don’t want to acknowledge what has been mentioned in another post here. We are an aging society and we are not having enough children to replace our population so we need new, young people to move here. And Canada has tough immigration policies. Ask anyone who has tried to move here.

It seems to be that Trumpism in the US has encouraged some people to voice their racist, bigoted xenpohobia without fear of reprisal or condemnation.

13th November 2023 at 1:00 pm
Chris Charaland

Michael – Do you honestly think that there was no racism in the United States before Donald Trump entered the political arena?

13th November 2023 at 6:54 pm