Despite pandemic and its impact over unemployment, Canadians have become more accepting and supportive of immigrants and refugees in 2020, according to a recent opinion research program launched by Environics Institute for Survey Research.
The Environics Institute periodically asks Canadians their opinions and feelings about migration. It interviewed 2,000 Canadians between September 8 and 23 and found that the percentage of Canadians who see immigrants as good for the country’s economy increased over the year. The authors of the survey believe that it could be a reaction to the political instability in the neighbouring country, the US (“we are not like them”).
Canada’s 2021–2023 Immigration Plan aims to welcome immigrants at a rate of about 1% of the population of the country annually (37,5 million people), including 401,000 permanent residents in 2021. It means Canada plans to welcome 1.2 million new immigrants over the next three years, according to recent statements of Canadian Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino quoted by Al-Jazeera.
UNHCR has celebrated it in a press release: “Canada’s tradition of welcoming newcomers remains unwavering” despite the pandemic. Currently, over one-fifth of Canada’s population is foreign-born.