Liberal Platform and Mandate Letter Comparison: IRCC and Diversity, Inclusion and Youth

Now that the mandate letters are out, went through the letters for Ministers Mendicino and Chagger, supplementing with other Ministers as needed (e.g., Justice, Public Safety, Innovation). The following table contrasts the platform commitments with the mandate letters, with no major surprises or omissions.

The most striking point was the relatively large number of Minister Chaggar’s commitments, although many are shared with other Ministers.

Hope you find this helpful and welcome any comments.

Liberal Platform and Mandate Letters 2019 – Immigration and Diversity Related

Cabinet, Parliamentary Secretary and CPC critic comparison

Now that the parliamentary secretaries have been announced, I prepared this chart that compares representation of women, visible minorities and Indigenous peoples in cabinet, parliamentary secretary appointments and Conservative critic roles. Given the relatively small size of the Bloc and NDP caucuses, have not bothered to do the same as virtually every member of those two parties plays a critic role.

The Liberal commitment to a gender-balanced cabinet means that women are comparatively over-represented compared to their share of caucus. Conversely, and likely to balance caucus representation, women parliamentary secretaries are comparatively under-represented. The Conservatives, on the other hand, have compensated for their relative lack of women MPs by ensure that one-quarter have the higher profile critic roles.

For visible minorities, with the reference population adjusted to visible minorities who are citizens, the Liberals not only elected more visible minority MPs but have ensured that cabinet and parliamentary secretary representation is comparable to their caucus representation. The Conservatives have also chosen to highlight their visible minority MPs in their critic appointments.

For Indigenous peoples, the Liberals have slight under-representation in cabinet and parliamentary secretary appointments compared to the population and caucus.

Venture Capital Firms Abandoning $4.4 Trillion Opportunity to Invest With Black and Women Entrepreneurs

Interesting, both for the analysis itself and that it was by Morgan Stanley:

Venture capital firms across America are neglecting a $4.4 trillion opportunity to increase their returns by not investing with companies owned by multicultural and women entrepreneurs, a new survey by investment banking giant Morgan Stanley suggests.

The survey, Beyond the VC Funding Gap, found that almost 200 U.S.-based venture capital (VC) firms and diverse entrepreneurs that have raised venture capital triumphantly are not utilizing known ways to boost their exposure or increasing the probability that they will invest in more diverse founders.

A staggering 83% of VCs surveyed reported they are confident they can prioritize investments in companies led by women and multicultural entrepreneurs and maximize returns. Some 60% of VCs stated their portfolios hold too few of these companies. However, just three out of five VCs reported making investments in women and multicultural entrepreneurs is not a firm-wide priority.

Multicultural and women founders cited “not the right fit for me” and “market-related issues” among the top reasons given by VC firms for not investing in their companies.

What is perhaps most startling is the potential amount of money VCs are leaving behind by not investing in the firms. Based on data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2012 Survey of Business Owners and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, Morgan Stanley reported revenues for women and minority businesses were $2.4 trillion. The firm said had the number of women and minority-owned businesses and a portion of revenues matched their percentage in the labor force—56%—then 2012 gross receipts would have risen to $6.8 trillion, suggesting a missed opportunity of up to $4.4 trillion.

TAKING THE RIGHT APPROACH

“Our research indicates that with a few subtle shifts in their approach, VCs can better position themselves to take advantage of these entrepreneurs and generate superior returns. I hope that this report will help to inspire more firms to re-evaluate their investment strategies so they can capitalize on these opportunities that have historically passed them by,” stated Carla Harris, Morgan Stanley Vice Chairman, Global Wealth Management and Multicultural Client Strategy Group Head.

The NVCA did not specifically address some of the issues pertaining to multicultural and women-owned firms raised in the Morgan Stanley report. But the Washington, DC-based trade group for the nation’s venture capital industry said it is taking several steps to ensure its membership works with and engages with those firms.

The group provided BLACK ENTERPRISE this statement from Maryam Hague, NVCA’s senior vice president of industry advancement:  “Through our VentureForward initiative, NVCA is committed to expanding opportunities for people of all backgrounds to thrive in the venture ecosystem and ensuring everyone who works in this ecosystem has a welcoming professional culture and safe work environment. Some of our activities to date include: NVCA-Deloitte Human Capital Survey – this survey is intended to be an educational resource for venture capital firms to understand how to expand the diversity of their teams and portfolio companies; LP Office Hours in Palo Alto, Boston, Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles. LP Office Hours is an in-person, half-day educational program across the country for professionals of diverse backgrounds to receive advice from and connect with LPs and other GPs, with the goal of learning from LPs about the fundraising process; NVCA hosts workshops and leadership dinners in San Francisco, Boston, and cities around the U.S. interacting with VC leaders in emerging ecosystems; and we have released model HR policies and best practices for attracting and retaining diverse talent. NVCA also offers several educational opportunities to democratize access to education on VC and to support the next generation of VC leaders, e.g. VC University and the Venture Capital Symposium.”

The Morgan Stanley report revealed VC firms not acting on the data on diverse entrepreneurs could be causing them to miss out on returns. That perhaps is potentially being fueled by a lack of awareness of multicultural and women firms in-house. Some 45% of VCs surveyed didn’t know how the returns from companies founded by women compared with their overall portfolio returns. And 53% of VCs were unsure about the returns of firms with multicultural founders.

A CLOSER LOOK AT THE MARKETPLACE

Still, Morgan Stanley stated a closer look at the broader marketplace reveals that companies serving diverse customers represent a huge opportunity to capitalize on consumer segments with plenty of room for more growth. For example, the firm reported that women drive 83% of all U.S. consumption, through both buying power and influence. Plus, African Americans spend $1.2 trillion annually in the U.S. And, (Latin) consumers’ buying power is expected to reach $1.7 trillion by 2020.

Concurrently, the Morgan Stanley report revealed VCs have a reputation for taking calculated “expansion risks” to invest in new and emerging markets — frequently with little precedent or data beyond their own due diligence. Of the VCs surveyed, they reported about 20% of the companies in their portfolios that embody expansion risks. Yet, when they bump into companies run by ethnic and women, entrepreneurs, VCs are less likely to educate themselves or take the risk, particularly if they are not familiar with the market or product.

Yet 88% of the VCs surveyed view the experiences of underrepresented entrepreneurs as a competitive advantage when it comes to identifying different problems that need to be solved. Companies typically created by diverse and women entrepreneurs target a market inefficiency or need they’ve identified based on their personal experiences, making them ideal candidates for the specific types of calculated expansion risks VCs should be looking at.

Concurrently, companies started by women and multicultural entrepreneurs have been and continue to be a moneymaking investment opportunity. Morgan Stanley maintains it has been investing directly in startups led by diverse founders for the past three years.

In its survey, Morgan Stanley named some firms that have provided investors hefty returns. Take Sundial Brands, one of the largest black-owned personal care products led by co-founder Richelieu Dennis. It was acquired in 2017 by consumer products giant Unilever. Sundial Brands, a former BLACK ENTERPRISE BE 100s company,  had revenues estimated at $240 million when it was purchased. After the deal, Morgan Stanley valued Sundial Brands at a whopping $1 billion.

In another eye-popping deal, Nigerian native and entrepreneur Chinedu Echeruo sold his HopStop.com pedestrian navigation service to tech powerhouse Apple for an estimated $1 billion in 2013. The transaction was stunning as HopStop had estimated revenues of just $5 million in 2012.

Morgan Stanley’s Harris defines multicultural companies as those with an  African American, Hispanic, Asian or American Indian founder.

She says VCs may have held back historically from investing in such firms because up until now there really wasn’t much evidence they were missing something. However, she says, both the evidence and the number on the size of the opportunity exists currently for them to consider doing so.

“The time is now for people to embrace the conversation if not the debate,” Harris says. “The really big surprise is that even though the multicultural and women firms can provide traditional VCs stellar or equal returns (as their peers) that they’re not investing with them for some reason,” she says.

REPRESENTATION MATTERS

Another factor that perhaps is contributing to the funding gap is a lack of diversity at VC firms.

The lack of diversity among VC firms perhaps is adding to the funding gap. The survey showed among VCs who have hired more diverse fund managers, LPs, partners or board members, 71% say it is a “very effective” way to increase the diversity of companies and founders they invest in. Some two-thirds of multicultural founders reported that they have had more success with diverse VC firms. But, only 11% of entrepreneurs have teamed up with VC firms that are diverse when it comes to gender and race.

“The fact that they (VC firms) don’t have more diversity at the table certainly limits their understanding of some of these industries,” Harris says. “Diversity would make it a lot easier to do so.”

Harris says the encouraging news is that if you look at the private equity industry some of the nation’s largest institutional investors such as CalPERS or the New York State Common Fund are now asking their investment partners about their diversity practices. She says the questions include what does diversity in your firm look like, how many businesses of color did you look at and how many multicultural firms do you have in your pipeline for partnership? Harris is confident the actions may drive VC firms to make the shift of investing with diverse and women firms along with existing partners. “Once you see some of the outside companies start to have some success, I think it’s going to feed on itself,” she says.

Morgan Stanley offered some tips on how VC firms can tap into what the firm calls a multitrillion-dollar market by working with diverse firms. Here is a condensed version of those tips:

REDEFINE HOW YOU THINK ABOUT “FIT” AND EXPANSION RISK FOR YOUR PORTFOLIO

Adjust your definition of “expansion risk” to include companies founded and led by women and multicultural entrepreneurs. This can help expand your networking efforts among diverse entrepreneurs and help you better understand the opportunities they present.

Consider diverse entrepreneurs are more seasoned players with lower risk. When diverse entrepreneurs get to pitch VCs, they’ve already often demonstrated a stronger proof of concept, management expertise, and success metrics when compared with their white, male counterparts.

Women and multicultural entrepreneurs represent an emerging market in America, much like the internet was 20 years ago or cloud-computing a decade ago. Along with pursuing new markets and products, consider investing in the new perspectives that diverse entrepreneurs offer and the markets they serve.

DIVERSIFY

Having more women and multicultural professionals at your fund is one of the most effective strategies for increasing investments in diverse founders.

By looking inward at your hiring and retention practices and prioritizing diversity, you can improve the delivery of results for your limited partners. The traditional sources for entry-level VC talent—top business schools—have large enough pools of women and multicultural graduates to fill the need.

In addition to helping VC firms source more diverse entrepreneurs and see market opportunity more clearly, firm diversity also decreases overall risk: The more diverse perspectives VCs have, the more likely they are to recognize opportunities and identify potential pitfalls.

HOLD YOUR FIRM ACCOUNTABLE AND BE A FIRST MOVER—INSTITUTIONAL INVESTORS CAN HELP

Develop a comprehensive strategy and make it public. Share data about your internal and portfolio diversity. Establishing goals for investing in more women and multicultural entrepreneurs can be an effective strategy for VCs to show their investors their commitment to effecting change; according to our survey, 86% of VCs agree that such goals would benefit themselves and their LPs.

Source: Venture Capital Firms Abandoning $4.4 Trillion Opportunity to Invest With Black and Women Entrepreneurs

Josephine Mathias: Racism still exists on campuses, but don’t exaggerate the problem

Clearly, less serious and less nuanced than the CRRF/Environics Institute study or other related surveys such as the GSS or police-reported hate crimes, which provide information regarding the relative seriousness or degree of racist behaviour.

I have no problem with a “believing stance” as long as it provides some clarity as to the type and degree of racist behaviour. The Laurier report, while having considerable narrative and considerable data on respondents and where incidents took place, does not, unless I missed it, have a data table that would indicate the relative frequency of minor (e.g., some microagressions) and major (e.g, violence or threats of violence) racism:

Wilfrid Laurier University is in hot water over a recent race-related study. According to the survey, which polled minority students, upwards of 70 per cent of respondents experienced racism on WLU’s campus.

If 70 per cent sounds hyperbolic, that’s because it has to be. The problem with this study — and many others that include self-reported data — is that it didn’t define what constitutes racism. The study states at the outset: “This study takes a believing stance; therefore, if participants understand their experiences as racism, then we do not question the validity of their lived experiences.”

In other words, anything goes.

There is no doubt that individual acts, as well as systemic instances of racism, continue to exist on some Canadian campuses. But, in today’s day and age and for the purposes of a “supposed” academic study, to leave the definition of the term “racism” open to interpretation is to render it meaningless.

Over the past few decades, academics — particularly in the field of sociology — have tried to redefine the term racism. “Discrimination based on skin colour” became “prejudice plus social/economic power” in academia, and this reinterpretation of the term led many social activists to simply develop their own wishy-washy definitions. Today, many people consider white people having dreadlocks racist; wearing Nigerian — or some other African country-themed attire racist; hell, even not liking a particular country’s food is racist now, too.

So, when we consider the WLU 70 per cent figure, what does it really mean? Does it mean 70 per cent of minority students have been radicalized by a professor or other university official while attending class? Or, is it more likely a fair portion of this 70 per cent overheard a white dude in the cafeteria saying “Indian food is icky?” The solution to the former scenario is a formal reprimand of the official in question. The solution to the latter, is to ignore Brad and move on with your day.

The thing that bugs me most about these studies is that they paint this false picture of what life is like for minority students on campuses. To say that 70 per cent of minority students experience racism, is to say that WLU is closer to Alabama 1950 than it is to Southern Ontario 2019. To leave
the definition of racism so broad, but then to report the study’s headline with the 70 per cent figure. just drums up outrage, distrust and fear among minority students — if you didn’t see racism on campus before, you certainly will be inclined to now.

What good does perpetuating this kind of narrative do? Racism does exist on campus, there’s no doubt about that, and I’m sure many of the self-reported stories would constitute legitimate acts of discrimination or other-ing of students based on their race.

The problem is that we can’t find solutions to racism on campus if racism can be anything. And if we make actual racism impossible to define and categorize, we can’t address the real problem. If everything’s racist, nothing can be singled out.

Today, legitimate instances of discrimination don’t happen nearly as often as this study would have us believe. We can and should identify and reprimand the bad actors — be they other students, professors, or university officials — but we shouldn’t inflate the amount of racism on campus just to get the point across.

Source: Josephine Mathias: Racism still exists on campuses, but don’t exaggerate the problem

Nuances of racism in South Korean schools revealed

Another country grappling with integration and acceptance:

An ADI researcher is calling for a rethink of multicultural education policies and nationalism in South Korea.

Alfred Deakin Institute’s DECRA Fellow, Dr. Jessica Walton, has urged policy makers in South Korea to rethink their multicultural educational policies so children with a multi-ethnic background feel more accepted at school.

She argues that the issue is exacerbated by the way the country promotes its national identity.

Dr. Walton’s research is revealed in a chapter of the forthcoming book, “Interrogating belonging for in schools,” edited by Professor Christine Halse, Conjoint Professor with Deakin’s Faculty of Arts and Education.

In the chapter, “‘I am Korean’: Contested belonging in a ‘multicultural’ Korea,” Dr. Walton outlines the findings of her research into the friendships and relationships between Korean primary school children with mono-ethnic and multi-.

All the children could speak Korean fluently and had Korean names.

“The main difference that distinguished the multi-ethnic students from their peers was based on hierarchies of belonging, including whether or not they ‘looked Korean’, the country where their parents were from, and their racialised ,” Dr. Walton said.

“As one of the students explained to me, ‘If it doesn’t show that you are from a different culture it is okay, but if it shows, those kids get bullied a lot and have a difficult time becoming friends with others’.”

Dr. Walton said fear of potential exclusion affected whether the children allowed others to know about their backgrounds, even if they were comfortable having a parent who was not Korean.

“At school, children’s relationships are characterised by ‘uri’, which can be described as a sense of togetherness or we-ness,” she explained.

“‘Uri’ determines how children play and who with. For instance, during the class breaks and during lunch, mono-ethnic children had noticeably less interaction with multi-ethnic children.

“Mono-ethnic children played together and, if they wanted to be alone, their friends checked to make sure they were fine being alone, whereas multi-ethnic children who were marked as ‘different’ based on their tended to be alone.”

Dr. Walton said that, in addition to multi-ethnic with darker skin who were more severely excluded, there was another child with lighter skin who was regularly on the periphery.

“This ‘s mother was from Russia, but Russia is not considered an ideal country, compared with having a lighter skin colour from a parent from the United States or a Western European country, such as Germany,” she said.

“The student’s interest in computers, rather than sport, accentuated his isolation and he had previously moved schools because he was being bullied.”

Dr. Walton said the student made considerable attempts to include himself in other students’ games and tried to interact with them, laughing at their jokes.

“He and another boy developed a friendship while working on a project together and he described this boy as a friend. He didn’t consider their friendship close.

“When asked who his best friend was, he said it was his cat.”

As part of the research, the students were given disposable cameras and asked to take photos of the people, places and things that surrounded and were important to them.

The research also explored the students’ friendship groups, their interests, hobbies, things they liked, worries, dreams, friends and family.

Dr. Walton said compared to the Korean mono-ethnic students, who took many pictures of friends, the isolated Korean multi-ethnic students, such as the Russian Korean student, took photos of themselves and objects they enjoyed playing with.

Despite being treated as the “other” at school, the multi-ethnic students felt they were Korean, stressing they had been born in the country, Dr. Walton said.

Their sense of Korean-ness was heightened by travel to their other parent’s country of origin.

“These students have achieved the government’s policy for multicultural assimilation. They speak the language fluently, were born and raised in Korea and understand the cultural nuances, yet they don’t ‘belong’,” Dr. Walton said.

“Significantly, they assert their Korean identity and challenge the parameters by which ‘Korean-ness’ is used to include and exclude.

“They do not need to prove their nationality, but what their assertion points to is the need for a broader conceptualisation at a policy level of Korean identity; one which emphasises what they have in common, rather than one based on racialised features and whether they look Korean.”

Source: Nuances of racism in South Korean schools revealed

Canadian academic denied university work, called liar by Chinese media after exposing Uyghur camps

The long reach of China. His work was also featured in this article: Like a movie’: In Xinjiang, new evidence that China stages prayers, street scenes for visiting delegations:

Olsi Jazexhi has been busy the last couple of months.

The historian has appeared on television, made presentations at universities and written op-ed articles, all to report on the ground-breaking observations he made of the camps where China is detaining as many as a million or more Uyghur Muslims.

But the Albanian-Canadian joint citizen has suddenly been deprived of paid work, and blames fallout from his outspoken testimony.

Jazexhi was denied any courses to teach at his university in Albania this semester, the first time that has happened since he started there four years ago.

Meanwhile, he’s been accused of lying and spreading “fake news” by Chinese Communist Party media and even a Chinese ambassador.

Jazexhi says the university rector told him only that the decision on his teaching work was out of her hands. In a country that has grown increasingly close to China, and where his university also has ties to Beijing, he believes he is being punished for the Uyghur exposés.

“I don’t have any proof … but I see with concern the great influence (the Chinese) are having in my university, and other universities in Albania,” he said in an interview. “There was no reason for them to reject me.”

Charles Burton, a China expert at Ontario’s Brock University who spoke alongside Jazexhi at campus talks in Montreal and Hamilton recently, said he has no direct knowledge of the history PhD’s employment record.

But he said it’s more than plausible the academic is facing retribution.

“It seems like a likely scenario to me,” said Burton. “Olsi has made an enormous contribution to our understanding of the situation in Xinjiang.”

Olsi Jazexhi: “There was no reason for them to reject me.” YouTube/File

Neither the university’s rector, Kseanela Sotirofski, nor Endri Fuga, spokesman for Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama, responded to emailed requests for comment on Jazexhi’s case.

While he immigrated to Canada a decade ago and did a post-doctoral fellowship at Toronto’s York University, Jazexhi divides his time between here and Albania.

On Tuesday, he, former Canadian MP David Kilgour and others were part of a panel discussion at the European Parliament in Brussels on the Uyghur situation.

Jazexhi’s role in exposing China’s treatment of the group centred in Jinjiang province is an unusual one. Convinced that reports of systematic repression of the minority were a plot by the West to turn Muslims against China, he obtained a spot on a stage-managed media tour of Jinjiang earlier this year.

But instead of reporting back that all was well, he documented with video-recorded interviews what he considered a systematic attempt to suppress the Uyghur’ language, culture and religion.

China says it’s “vocational training” centres are designed to de-radicalize extremist Muslims and prevent terrorism.

But a teacher at one centre revealed on video to Jazexhi that “students” at the camps are not even allowed to pray, and a typical reason for ending up at the facility was getting married according to Muslim tradition and not obtaining a government marriage licence.

His videos showed detainees refusing to speak their Turkic language and responding to his repeated Muslim greetings with “ni hao,” Mandarin for hello. Students revealed in interviews they had been sent to the camp for such offences as downloading videos saying Muslims should not join the Communist Party, taking part in “illegal” Koran classes and reading material encouraging Muslims to pray regularly.

The recent leak of a trove of internal Chinese government documents offered a written account of the country’s Uyghur policy, but Jazexhi’s videos provide a unique glimpse inside the camps.

The Global Times, a tabloid-like Communist Party newspaper, published two articles wholly or partly dedicated to discrediting him, one last week saying Jazexhi “spread fake information on the region and what he did was out of malice and went against the basic professional ethics as a reporter.”

In Turkey’s Daily Sabah newspaper, the Chinese ambassador to Turkey decried an article of Jazexhi’s “in which facts are distorted and basic knowledge is absent. It is hard to believe that its author is a ‘historian.’ ”

Meanwhile, though Albania is still part of NATO and trying to join the EU, it has forged ever-closer ties with Beijing, according to leading China expert Anne-Marie Brady of New Zealand’s University of Canterbury. Albania is a founding member of the 17+1 alliance of China, central Asian and eastern European countries, and part of Beijing’s Belt and Road infrastructure-investment initiative.

A Chinese company took over management of the capital’s international airport in 2016. The same year, Canada’s Bankers Petroleum sold its Albanian oil rights to China’s Geo-Jade Petroleum in the wake of controversial fraud allegations against it.

Jazexhi said his own university also has links, with rector Sotirofski signing a co-operation agreement with Yangzhou University last year in China, a Chinese-run Confucius Institute on campus, and professors often taking all-expense-paid trips there.

Source: Canadian academic denied university work, called liar by Chinese media after exposing Uyghur camps

Groundbreaking study documents extent of racism in Canada

In case you missed it, the latest project by the Canadian Race Relations Foundation and the Environics Institute. Media release below but well worth browsing through the main report:

Today – International Human Rights Day – the Environics Institute for Survey Research and the Canadian Race Relations Foundation released the Race Relations in Canada 2019 Survey, a new national survey of Canadians that is the first of its kind to cover race relations across the country.

This study confirms the reality of racism in Canada. Also important, it shows that this reality is widely if not universally acknowledged. Many Canadians across different racial backgrounds report experiences of racism and discrimination due to race, and also recognize that it also affects others of their own race and from other racial groups.

  •   Majorities of Canadians who are Black (54%) or Indigenous (53%) have personally experienced discrimination due to race or ethnicity from time to time if not regularly. Such experience is also evident but less widely reported by those who are South Asian (38%), Chinese (36%), from other racialized groups (32%), or White (12%).
  •   Most Canadians acknowledge that racialized Canadians experience discrimination either often or at least occasionally. Specifically, Canadians are most likely to believe that Indigenous Peoples (77%), Black people (73%), and South Asians (75%) experience discrimination often or occasionally; by comparison, fewer – although still a majority – (54%) believe this is the case for Chinese people in Canada. Very few (5%) say that racialized Canadians never experience discrimination.The reality of racism in Canada notwithstanding, most Canadians believe that different racial groups generally get along with one another, and are more likely to be optimistic than pessimistic about achieving racial equality in their lifetime.
  •   Eight in ten (81%) Canadians say that race relations in their own community are generally good in terms of how well people from different races get along with one another, versus just eight percent who describe such relations as generally bad. A positive view is held by large majorities of those who are White (84%), South Asian (83%), Chinese (81%) and Black (77%), and by a smaller majority who are Indigenous (69%).
  •   Six in ten are very (14%) or somewhat (46%) optimistic that all racialized people in Canada will be treated with the same respect as others in their lifetime, versus 26 percent who are pessimistic. Such optimism is evident across all racial groups, and strongest among younger Canadians.

“As social discourse has become coarser with the global emboldening of hate speech, so has the importance of civil dialogue grown,” said Dr. Lilian Ma, Executive Director of the Canadian Race Relation Foundation. “With the loosening of the bonds of civility, it becomes all the more essential to provide pragmatic, evidence-based and non-partisan data such as this. This study provides factual information based on lived experience and is meant to serve as a reference point for cross-cultural interchange.”

The Race Relations in Canada 2019 Survey establishes new benchmark indicators of race relations across Canada from the perspective of its citizens, and provides the foundation for monitoring progress over time. Themes covered in the research include: the state of race relations in Canada, attitudes toward specific racial groups, perceptions of racial discrimination in Canada generally and of one’s own racial group, and personal experiences. The study also draws comparisons with the attitudes and experiences of Americans based on research conducted in the USA.

“This type of research can serve as point of common ground that brings different stakeholders together, and provide a means for measuring progress (or the lack of) over time to support organizations in the public, private and non-profit sectors who are working to reduce racism both internally and in broader society” comments Dr. Keith Neuman, the study’s project director at the Environics Institute.

The full report of the study is available at: Full report

The research consisted of a survey conducted online between April 17 and May 6, 2019, with a sample of 3,111 Canadians ages 18 and over. The sample was stratified to ensure representation by province, age and gender, and also included over-samples of individuals who self-identify as Chinese, Black, South Asian or Indigenous (First Nations, Métis, Inuit) (the four largest racialized populations in Canada).

This Is What Racism Looks Like in the Banking Industry

Good long read and good to see that this was documented:

Jimmy Kennedy earned $13 million during his nine-year career as a player in the National Football League. He was the kind of person most banks would be happy to have as a client.

But when Mr. Kennedy tried to become a “private client” at JPMorgan Chase, an elite designation that would earn him travel discounts, exclusive event invitations and better deals on loans, he kept getting the runaround.

At first, he didn’t understand why. Then, last fall, he showed up at his local JPMorgan branch in Arizona, and an employee offered an explanation.

“You’re bigger than the average person, period. And you’re also an African-American,” the employee, Charles Belton, who is black, told Mr. Kennedy. “We’re in Arizona. I don’t have to tell you about what the demographics are in Arizona. They don’t see people like you a lot.” Mr. Kennedy recorded the conversation and shared it with The New York Times.

Wealthy Singapore Faces Rising Opposition To Immigration

Seeing more articles on immigration debates in Singapore:

Singapore’s Changi Airport has commenced a six-month trial under which Singaporeans returning home will no longer need passports to clear customs – rather their identities will be verified by iris and facial recognition technology.

This “contactless” form of identification is considered a faster and smoother way of processing arrivals compared to the old passport-and-thumbprint method.

Changi Airport processed some 65.6 million passengers in 2018, a 5.5% jump from the prior year.

However, while Singapore is seeking to make returning citizens more comfortable at airport customs, the city-state is grappling with rising opposition to immigration. As in parts of the West, immigrants are being blamed in Singapore for driving down wages and increasing other living costs.

Proponents of immigration say foreign workers are needed as Singapore ages.

Leong Chan Hoong, an associate professor at the Singapore University of Social Sciences, told World Policy Review that immigration is important to sustain Singapore’s long-term economic performance, “as it is a rapidly aging society with one of the lowest fertility rates in the world.”

Indeed, the government indicated the percentage of citizens at least 65 years of age jumped from 9.9% in 2009 to 16% in 2019. This figure is projected to increase to about 23.7% in 2030.

“Immigration helps to moderate the impact of aging and low birth rates in our citizen population, and keeps it from shrinking over the longer term,” the Prime Minister’s Office Strategy Group said.

However, Leong also said that immigrants are seen by many Singaporeans “as taking away jobs and other resources and eroding Singapore’s cultural identity. There also exists a perception, he added, that Singapore’s political leaders “shows favoritism toward immigrants at the expense of native-born Singaporeans.”

About 40% of Singapore’s 5.7 million residents are immigrants, hailing primarily from China, India, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Philippines and Indonesia.

While the overall population has increased slightly since 2014, the number of permanent residents and nonresidents has  actually remained relatively stable over that period.

As of June 2018, Singapore had a population of about 5.64 million – comprised 3.47 million residents, 520,000 permanent residents, who have the most privileges as citizens but can’t vote nor hold office, and 1.64 million nonresidents, who typically are work permit holders, students, foreign domestic workers and other dependents.

Leong noted that since the 2011 election, the government has pacified anti-immigrant elements in the society by, among other things, making “a sharper legal distinction between citizens, permanent residents and migrant workers that made it harder for noncitizens to access public benefits.

For example, Singapore has reduced the issuance of “employment passes” – which are granted to foreign professionals, managers, executives and technicians – to an average of 3,000 between 2014 and 2017, versus a peak of 32,000 in 2011.

While public demonstrations are rare in the city-state, a  gathering assembled at the Speaker’s Corner in Hong Lim Park in early November to protest the Singapore-India Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement – a free trade agreement signed in 2005. Protesters contended this agreement makes it too easy for Indians with professional degrees to immigrate into Singapore, thereby hurting Singaporean citizens.

Gilbert Goh, the organizer of the protest, wrote on Facebook: “Singaporeans, it is time to stand up for your rights to a reasonably good job in our own country — we must always adhere to the Singaporean-first slogan and that employment must be given to a local first before we ever consider a foreigner.”

A recent report on Singapore’s housing market in Bloomberg noted that “with the local labor market hitting a soft patch, and amid rising clamor for a “Singaporean First” employment policy, tight controls on immigration are likely to remain in place through 2020.”

There appears to exist a specific focus on new arrivals from India, many of whom are regarded as unwilling to integrate.

John Solomon. a historian at National University of Singapore, said some Singaporeans are concerned about Indians transferring their caste system.

“Whether or not new immigration from India is indeed bringing about a gradual revival in caste identities in Singapore, the growth of this perception has manifested itself in popular xenophobic stereotypes about the new Indian migrant as an exporter of atavistic and backward social ideas,” he wrote.

Kumaran Pillai, publisher of The Independent News, said new Indian migrants tend to “have their own enclaves” and “they hang around and move in their own circles, … [and] rarely mix and talk with locals.”

Pillai added that many new Indian immigrants are better educated than native Singaporeans and carry an arrogant attitude.

“They’re perceived as a bit uppity, those in management positions. It’s not caste, it’s class consciousness,” Pillai said.

Source: Wealthy Singapore Faces Rising Opposition To Immigration

Searching for Fred Christie, the Jamaican immigrant who tried to end legalized racism in Canada

Part of our history:

Fred Christie was no stranger to the York Tavern, a popular watering hole in the old Montreal Forum.

As a season ticket holder, Christie often dropped by the tavern during hockey season.

But this was the summer of 1936, boxing season, and unbeknown to Christie, the rules at the York were different in boxing season.

He walked in with two friends one Saturday night. The tavern was crowded. Christie slapped 50 cents on the table and asked for three beers.

The waiter said no. He explained that he’d been told not to serve black people. Christie went to the bar. The bartender told him the same thing. So did the manager.

So Christie, a private chauffeur, went to court. Eighty years ago this week, the Supreme Court of Canada delivered its ruling.

In a 4-1 decision, the court recognized that staff at the York Tavern had refused to serve Christie “for the sole reason that they had been instructed not to serve coloured persons.”

However, the court concluded, merchants are free to serve who they please, and in turning Christie away, the York “was strictly within its rights.”

And with that, the highest court in the country enshrined racial discrimination in law.

It wasn’t until Quebec passed its Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms in 1975 that Christie vs. York ceased to have effect in the province — and seven years later in the rest of Canada when the federal charter was passed.

Black community rallies

The case has not surfaced in news coverage much since then.

As for Christie, he moved to Vermont not long after the decision and little is known about his life in the U.S.

But a prominent civil rights group in Montreal is using the anniversary of the 1939 Supreme Court decision to seek more recognition for Christie and the legal fight he mounted with the help of Montreal’s black community.

“It’s of major historical importance to the laws of this country and the fight for racial equality — as important as the battle of Viola Desmond in Nova Scotia,” said Fo Niemi, who heads the Center for Research-Action on Race Relations (CRARR).

Niemi is hoping to persuade the federal government to issue a stamp in Christie’s honour or have him declared a person of national historical significance.

In the meantime, local historians are talking to parishioners at Union United Church, Montreal’s oldest black congregation, to gather more details about Christie.

It’s known he arrived in Montreal from his native Jamaica in 1919, settling in Verdun. According to one scholar, that neighbourhood might have appealed to Christie because it was not far from the Forum arena , and he was an avid sports fan.

Legalized racism differed from the U.S.

When Christie decided to take the York Tavern to court, Montreal’s black community rallied behind him. A young doctor, Kenneth Melville, chaired a committee that raised money to cover his legal costs.

Melville, also a Jamaican immigrant, was the first black medical student at McGill University and went on to chair the university’s pharmacology and therapeutics department.

The committee raised enough money by collecting nickels and dimes at barbershops, newsstands and churches.

“The black community was quite concerned about trying to acquire rights at a time when human rights legislation didn’t exist,” said Dorothy Williams, a historian who teaches black Montreal history at Concordia University.

“They were trying to set up an environment where they would have the same liberties and privileges that their white neighbours had.”

Legalized racism operated differently in Canada than in the United States, where a whole regime of segregation was spelled out in the so-called Jim Crow laws.

“Much of the legalized racism in Canada was enabled through private means,” said University of Alberta law Prof. Eric Adams, who has researched the Christie vs. York decision.

By invoking legal principles such as freedom of commerce, Canadian courts chose not to intervene in areas of social life where racial discrimination was occurring.

“The freedom and rights that mattered to the Supreme Court of Canada were the freedoms to conduct yourself in a racist manner,” Adams said.

In the absence of legal principles ensuring equality, which institutions chose to turn away black people at which time fluctuated in a seemingly arbitrary manner.

This helps explain why Christie would have been served at the York Tavern during hockey season but not during boxing season.

“We didn’t have written laws of segregation,” said Williams. “In Montreal, certain customs and mores were in place that made it very clear that certain people were not welcome in certain establishments.”

Law as a double-edged sword

The decision, which only runs 15 pages, was delivered just days after the start of the Second World War.

Writing for the majority, Justice Thibaudeau Rinfret claimed the York’s rule of not serving black people did not violate “good morals or public order.”

Adelle Blackett, a professor of labour law at McGill University, recalled how reading the decision as a first-year law student left her unsettled.

Blackett, who teaches the case regularly, read the decision again on Monday, 80 years to the day after it was delivered.

“I still found it painful, frankly, to read,” she said.

Even the dissent is “not exactly a strong articulation of the importance of human rights,” said Blackett, a former commissioner of Quebec’s Human Rights and Youth Rights Commission.

The lone dissenting judge, Henry Davis, argued the freedom of commerce principle shouldn’t apply because the York was benefiting from the provincial government’s control of the sale of liquor.

“It’s not rights language,” said Blackett. “It’s not: Mr. Christie, by virtue of being a human being deserving of dignity, has the right to be served and not discriminated against.”

“That’s the kind of specific language that comes through a charter of rights.”

The decision helps illustrate the ways in which human rights codes, which began to emerge after the Second World War, contributed to how Canadians interact with each other.

But for legal scholars, Christie vs. York is also a reminder that the law can be a double-edged sword — a source of protection and of oppression.

And that hasn’t changed.

“There is no monopoly on wisdom in our legal order,” said Adams.

Source: Searching for Fred Christie, the Jamaican immigrant who tried to end legalized racism in Canada