André Pratte: Quebec political parties are competing for the worst immigration policy

Pratte captures well the conundrum facing Quebec – increase immigration to match the rest of Canada and maintain its current demographic and political weight, or continue its relative population decline in relation to other provinces and thus face future questioning of its share of MPs.
That being said, governments in the rest of Canada would benefit from greater questioning of the demographic arguments (weak) justifying increased immigration levels:
Week 2 of the Quebec election campaign was dominated by the immigration issue: how many newcomers should the province welcome each year? Premier François Legault’s answer was telling: his models are Switzerland and the Scandinavian states, which he described as “extraordinarily wealthy, dynamic countries.” The problem is that if it excessively limits immigration, Quebec risks becoming a small, relatively poor nation.
Throughout Quebec’s history, immigration has been a sensitive topic. Before 1960, foreigners were seen as a threat to the province’s Catholicism. Since the Quiet Revolution, Quebecers have been concerned about the French language’s future. The latest census data released by Statistics Canada in August appear to confirm that because a significant number of immigrants to Quebec adopt English as their second language, the proportion of French speakers in the province is slowly decreasing.

Source: André Pratte: Quebec political parties are competing for the worst immigration policy

About Andrew
Andrew blogs and tweets public policy issues, particularly the relationship between the political and bureaucratic levels, citizenship and multiculturalism. His latest book, Policy Arrogance or Innocent Bias, recounts his experience as a senior public servant in this area.

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