How Canada can avoid Germany’s refugee troubles?
There are many good reasons why Canada should be able to escape the ethnic tensions that threaten to ignite in Germany. We are taking far fewer, and far more carefully screened, refugees. We are a settler society, with a deep history of embracing wave after wave of those seeking a new start and a better life. Those new arrivals – from the Irish in the 19th century to the Eastern and Southern Europeans after the war, even to the Chinese and Filipinos and Indians who dominate our immigration intake today – had to and have to endure prejudice, but they integrated successfully nonetheless.These new arrivals will doubtless integrate successfully, too, just as the 380,000 Arab Canadians who came before them have. But the Trudeau government will need to ensure that language training, housing and jobs are available for the new arrivals, without letting them jump to the front of any queue. It will need to be vigilant in watching for possible security threats, it will need to act swiftly to counteract any signs that this latest intake is struggling – the surest sign would be evidence of Syrians clumping together in racially defined ghettos with below-average incomes and above-average crime rates – or to any evidence of growing hostility from native-born Canadians.The early evidence suggests that this government is up to the job. Here’s hoping that continues.
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