Moving Back to Jamaica

A blog about my Move Back to Jamaica after 20+ years of living in the US. Most of the articles focus on the period from 2005-2009 when the transition was new, and at it's most challenging.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Migrant Facing Reality in Canada

Another article appeared in the Gleaner recently, from a Jamaican migrant to Canada.

Here is the article:  Click here to see the original in  the online Gleaner.

Migrant facing reality in Canada
published: Friday | March 7, 2008


I MOVED to Canada last year with my family. The changing economic conditions forced my decision. As a skilled immigrant that paid thousands of dollars to get to Canada, I was shocked at the reality of the situation.

In order to get a job in Canada, you have to have 'Canadian experience'. All your years of work experience has no value in Canada. The job agencies seem to only want to give you factory or warehouse jobs. Most of these agencies are staffed by whites. They will ask you questions such as, can you use a computer? Yet, your résumé states it. Office jobs for minorities are limited. Most companies here are run by whites and the hidden discriminatory actions are professionally ingrained in policies and conditions of employment.

I have read a government report that states that 17 per cent of office jobs in Canada are held by minorities. Just imagine, if you were to relate that to blacks, it would really be a shocking number. I often ask myself, where are the blacks? The answer is that they are working in warehouses, driving trucks and working in factories. It could be said that Canada practises hidden racism, while the United States is open with it. At times, I have to mentally remind myself of my value and worth. Bob Marley's music keeps me going.

In reality, I believe that the skills programme that Canada offers is a way of getting immigrants to come to Canada to work in industry jobs so as to build the economy. Many Jamaicans are coming here without being told the truth. It would be good if The Gleaner did research on this and factually represent what is really happening to immigrants. The truth must be told.

I am, etc.,

Concerned Immigrant

Via Go-Jamaica


At 3/21/2008 9:32 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

2001 census says that Black Canadians make up 1.97% of the population. Why is this individual surprised that he sees mostly whites? There are 5x more white people than all others combined. Should this be a surprise? Get real.

If a black Jamaican came to my place of employment and plopped a resume down in front of me that had the skills I wanted, he/she would be hired in a heartbeat. It's as simple as that.

Skilled professionals come to Canada from all over the world, nobody is discounting their qualifications out of hand.

Am I saying there is no racism in Canada? Of course not. Racism is everywhere, including Jamaica.

At 4/06/2008 12:48 PM, Anonymous canadian said...

I'm curious to know where in Canada you moved to?
As far as I know, within my company - if you have the skill and the knowledge base, you're hired. My comapny believes it makes for a more diverse and more creative/knowledgable workforce if you concentrate on ability rather than appearance.

At 4/08/2012 1:28 PM, Blogger Pogue Mahone said...

I'm Canadian and I don't like it here either.I wish I could move elsewhere but I can't afford it. I have been to 33 countries so I know what else is out there to compare it to. It's true they won't hire skilled immigrants(incl. doctors and other professionals) as they don't accept their degrees or training(they have to re-train here)and many get jobs as waiters,cashiers, cab drivers, etc. and it's a terrible shame and loss of good skilled labour.There is also alot of racism and anti-immigration here. Too bad they don't tell people that BEFORE they immigrate!


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