Immigration, Assimilation, Ethnicity and All That Jazz

English or French Test for ALL Skilled Immigrants

Posted by chinesecanuck on May 3, 2008

It could happen, according to the Toronto Star.  Yes, this means that people coming into Canada from countries that speak either English or French will need to pass the test too.  While the ability to speak, read and write English well would mean that people from countries that speak other languages can better adapt here, it does seem insulting to people who’re from, say, Australia.  Also, the language status of people who ARE NOT coming in as skilled workers would unlikely change.  In larger cities, they’re most likely to interact only with people who speak their language and understand the old culture.  This is NOT a good thing.

Of course, as the article says, it cause further delays in the already-backed up application system.

Readers, what do you think?  How well should immigrants’ language skills be? 

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3 Responses to “English or French Test for ALL Skilled Immigrants”

  1. sengdroma said

    Well we came from the UK so I can only speak about my knowledge of that country.

    The standard of English has declined, many children both born in the UK or coming in from East Europe etc are not even making the basic grades…. This is a worry in the UK with employers wanting the Gov to take drastic action.

    However as a BA Honours Grad in English I did find it a bit insulting that firstly I had a degree in English and secondly I am English born and bred to be asked to prove that I can speak and write English. In the end I wrote as letter to Immigration as proof of me English saying “I am writing this letter to prove I can speak and write in English and here is a transcript of my degree. I am happy to fax any more proof or speak to some one directly if required.”

    That was the last I heard from Immigration regarding any of mine or my husband’s abilities to understand English – He is a commercial airline pilot for British Airways!!!!!

    What is more worrying is that many people from the UK are aware now that they may never get into Canada after 2008. With the potential new rules being introduced to only take those skilled workers who can prove that their job is in demand in Canada being allowed in, and the memo that went around certain countries immigration offices stating – please delay the applications of those coming from the UK.

    Now the reason for the memo is because in the UK there is now an influx of ethnic minorities coming in which in turn is meaning some areas of the UK like Birmingham now have the native white population being the minority. This has scared some wealthy English (white and non white) into thinking that England is not the place to be and so they are leaving the country like rats leaving a sinking ship.

    We would not go back to the UK to live – tired of the thugs and the lack of police power, and the mentality that people have to be sheep not individuals.

    We love Canada and the diversity that it has to offer and the opportunity that there is for our children.

  2. Scapegoat said

    People coming from an English/French-speaking country should not be required to take language proficiency tests. It’s almost like making me take an English test if I wanted to move to another English-speaking Canadian province.

    In most Canadian graduate schools, applicants from English schools are not required to take TOEFL. However, applicants from non-English schools must take TOEFL. IMHO this makes sense and a similar approach should be applied for immigration.

    Why on Earth are we still accepting immigrants who are not skilled workers when we cannot guarantee jobs for them? The GM Oshawa plant just cut 900 jobs because the economy is so bad. Should we continue to oversaturate the labour market just so that the fat cats can profit from lower wages?

  3. It is only another non sense from our Government’s bureaucracy! I am a FSL program developer and trainer for the industry and I mainly work with civil servants in the Public Service of Canada… Anyone aware of our Canadian policies on Official Languages knows that Federal Government’s employees must be bilingual (to a certain extent! A, B or C level)and therefore are required to PASS (not to communicate in the second language) the written expression, reading comprehension and oral tests in order to maintain their job positions.

    Hopefully, immigrants coming in as skilled workers who are fluent either in English or French won’t have to pass the SAME tests because I guarantee you: they will all fail big time!!! (although I have been told the English tests are much easier)… If so, they would have to go on intensive training to be taught to the tests, otherwise I am afraid they would have to pack their skills and go back home!

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