Universities could suffer a huge income deficit because of the absence of international students - Punjabi
RADIO - Red FM 106.7 The Evening Show - Calgary, 03/06/2020 - COMMENTARY, Punjabi
Summary Translation: Monica Oberoi - RBC has published a report regarding international students and people who complain about international students should listen to this report carefully. RBC has reported that due to the COVID-19 pandemic there is a lot of strain on Canada's international student sector. There is a drop of 45% in the number of international student permits issued in the month of March 2020 as compared to the number of permits issued in March 2019. What will be the immediate impact of this? The impact of this will be evident in many areas. Higher education institutes will not receive their yearly income of $6 billion. Its ripple effect will be on Canada's GDP as well. The total spending of international students in Canada is $22 billion. Canada's economy benefits from international students even after they finish their degree - 11,000 new permanent residents every year were former students. Immigration is at a standstill and the labour force without immigration is dropping. It will be very difficult for Canada to sustain its economy without introducing new workers.
Image: Producer and host Monica Oberoi, Red FM 106.7 Facebook page
WEB - Dushi.ca - Markham, 30/05/2020 - NEWS, Chinese
Image Source: Dushi.ca
Summary Translation: Like other international students, Shahbuddin faces uncertainty as universities switch to online classes. She also has financial concerns, worries about a work permit and has fears about her health. “It’s been almost two months now and I’ve been thinking about it every day and still cannot make a decision,” she said in a phone interview. Matthew Ramsey, a spokesman at the University of British Columbia, said it will primarily be offering online classes in the fall so students can participate from around the world. The university will not know enrolment numbers until September because most students who are offered and accept admission sometimes opt out for a variety of reasons, he said. Ijaz Ashraf is from Pakistan and has been accepted at Concordia University to do a master’s degree in industrial engineering. He said he will likely defer enrolment because he’s not satisfied with online classes and wants to experience campus life. David Robinson, executive director of the Canadian Association of University Teachers, said his group has been working with the Canadian Federation of Students. Both groups have suggested tuition waivers or cuts funded through the government. He said there’s an added concern for students in some countries where the course material may be censored.
PRINT - Contacto Directo - Vancouver, 22/05/2020 - EDITORIAL, p.12, Spanish
Image Source: Contacto Directo
Summary Translation: Canada took a pioneering decision in 1971: the adoption of multiculturalism as a state policy. Over 45 years later, cultural diversity is one of Canada's identity markers. "Our roots reach out to every corner of the globe. We are from far and wide and speak over 200 languages. Our national fabric is vibrant and varied, woven together by many cultures and heritages, and underlined by a core value of respect," said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Like other American countries, present day Canadian society is the result of a mix of Indigenous and colonial cultures, as well as those brought by immigrants during different historical time periods.
RADIO - Red FM 88.9 Good Morning Toronto - Brampton, 28/05/2020 - PHONE IN, Punjabi
Summary Description: Dalhousie University will be moving most of its fall courses online as physical distancing restrictions remain in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the international students' program is facing challenges due to a drop in applications. University President Deep Saini spoke with Red FM radio host on this situation. Saini said that the Halifax university closed its campus in March and moved its courses online until its fall semester amid rising COVID-19 concerns. However, Saini said that the university is considering resume in-person classes for some programs requiring experiential learning, like medicine, dentistry, physiotherapy and agriculture, but in a safe environment that abides by Nova Scotia's public health protocols. Saini further said that the university has received more applications than the past year from both domestic and international students and the offers are also being accepted. However, the students are waiting for the travel restrictions to be lifted. He also said that a large number of students come from India and China, but they are unable to travel at this time. According to Saini, the September enrollment is expected to drop, but how much will be clear in June, when the registrations start. Saini said the university is investing more than $1 million on "technology development, additional online instruction training and increased online supports for students" to make the transition easier for students and faculty. Saini also gave an update on the COVID -19 vaccine project at Dalhousie University.
Blacks, Latin Americans and South Asian Canadians are most at risk of losing their jobs and incomes due to the COVID-19 pandemic - Bengali
PRINT - Probashi Kantho - Toronto, 23/05/2020 - NEWS, Bengali
Image Source: Probashi Kantho website (photo: CBC)
Summary Translation: No byline - A national-level survey of Canadian studies was released last Monday. The study is based on people's ability to pay rent, pay other bills and help their families financially. The survey was conducted among 3,700 people between March 26 and April 5. Among the six ethnic groups, the most economically vulnerable Canadians are South Asians. Then there are blacks, Arabs and Chinese. Caucasians will have the least problems. About 45 per cent of South Asians, blacks and Latin Americans say they will have trouble paying rent and mortgage instalments. In comparison, 20 per cent of whites will have such a crisis. Seventy per cent of blacks, Latin Americans, Arabs, and South Asians say it is now difficult to provide financial support for their family members. In comparison, 40 per cent of Chinese and Caucasians say they are in crisis.
PRINT - Probashi Kantho - Toronto, 23/05/2020 - ARTICLE, Bengali
Image Source: Probashi Kantho website (photo: Citynews-Winnipeg)
Summary Translation: No byline - According to CBC News, people from specific socio-economic conditions or socio-economic communities in Toronto are being infected with the coronavirus to a greater extent than others. Toronto Medical Officer Eileen de Villa said. She told reporters that people in low-income areas of Toronto who are recent immigrants and people with high levels of unemployment are more likely to be affected by corona than others and have a higher rate of hospitalization. The same picture has been seen in Montreal. According to a report by CBC News, the worst affected areas are the poorer areas of Montreal. And most of the people living in these poor areas are from immigrant communities in Asia or Africa. They work mainly on the frontline and on low pay. Many of these health workers live in those poor areas. About half of Toronto's residents live in places where maintaining social distance is a really difficult task. If you need to get out of the apartment for an emergency, there is a chance that someone will come too close. And in that case, the level of risk also increases.
WEB - Canadian Filipino Net - Vancouver, 26/05/2020 - EDITORIAL, English
Image Source: Canadian Filipino Net
Summary: Maria Veronica Caparas - Many Filipino women who come to Canada to work as caregivers are highly educated in their native country. A number of Filipinos in Canada answer to the title of “caregivers” and/or “nannies” to the extent that long-time Canadian immigrants from Europe and England think that any highly skilled Filipinos move to Canada to work as nannies. Training in caregiving counts as one of the skillset programs that the Philippine government’s labour export policy made accessible to Filipinos in the early 2000s. Caregiving skills matched the needs of Canada’s graying population, and opened wide Canada’s gate to highly skilled Filipinos or those educated in professional degrees such as commerce, education, nursing, or physical therapy. Despite their home-earned professional degrees that Canada has yet to recognize, many Filipinos remain nannies for a number of reasons. First, Filipinos find it hard to start from scratch. Earning another degree, taking courses, or writing exams for better paying jobs requires a lot of time and money. Second, Filipinos take pride in their skills as caregivers. Such skills expand their social capital, i.e., they bring their families, relatives, and friends to Canada and establish a wide social-cum-political network for timely appropriations and interventions. This social capital likewise translates into financial capital not only for their next-of-kin but also for the Philippine coffers. It appears that Filipinos, consciously or unconsciously, are complicit in the making of abusive, exploitative, and unjust European-Canadian employers. It also appears that some European-Canadian employers milk their Filipino caregivers dry, silence them through exhaustion in manual labour, and perpetuate the colonizer stance toward the once colonized and subdued. This case extends to the larger political spaces where Canada and the Philippines wield their wares to the advantage of the powerful and the detriment of the powerless.
WEB - Canadian Filipino Net - Vancouver, 26/05/2020 - EDITORIAL, English
Image Source: Canadian Filipino Net
Summary: Carlo Javier - Capilano Courier, Capilano University’s campus newspaper, ran a feature detailing the event and its participants, particularly the union membership, the majority of which were of Filipino heritage. Filipinos in Canada have long been intrinsically linked to the Live-In Caregiver program, and that stereotype has expanded to custodianship. A quick look at the union’s posters and campaign flyers reinforced this case. The janitors at the Capilano University are predominantly Filipinos, exactly 22 of the 29 are. It is estimated that 60 per cent of cleaners in the Lower Mainland are Filipino. As a 24-year-old Filipino immigrant, a graduate of Capilano University’s Bachelor of Communication Studies program, and the outgoing editor-in-chief of the campus’ official newspaper, the writer has seen and experienced his fair share of racialization in his 12 years in Canada. Leo Alejandria of Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 2 worked for over 20 years as a cleaner in a host of Vancouver schools. These days, he works with the union and volunteers with the BC chapter of Migrante – an international advocacy group for migrant Filipinos. The numbers are shocking, but they made perfect sense to him. Many Filipinos can recall too many family members, friends, and acquaintances who have dabbled in the cleaning industry. It is an honest job and one that should really not be looked down on – but it does sting when you’re a college-educated immigrant who may have built an impressive professional career in the Philippines, only to find yourself cleaning toilets and tables at schools, offices, and malls. The feature's writer states that his story is about racialization and dehumanization. One that looked at how the caregiver stereotype has evolved into the cleaner stereotype, and just how venomous this assumption can be. Another Filipino worker, Eymard Caravana, spoke about maintaining the utmost level of professionalism in his job – no matter what his job is. If we were to take away some positives from all the racialized identities that have been built for Filipinos in Canada, the writer says, he would be happy with professionalism. Filipinos do indeed work well and hard – even if it’s a job they never thought they would end up with.
By Muskan Sandhu
Image Source: http://www.mingshengbao.com/
“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest”
It appears that Canada has shifted the burden of investing in knowledge, specifically in higher education, to international students. The first-world system of generating wealth by outsourcing its needs to other countries has been replicated in the Canadian education system as well. Except, in this case, wealth isn’t produced by extracting cheap labour but instead through an inverted model of providing exorbitant educational services to international students. With COVID-19 halting various forms of cross-border exchange, what exactly is at stake for the Canadian economy and education if international student enrollment falls sharply?
To put the potential outcome in perspective, various ethnic media outlets have taken to pointing out how international students contribute to Canada’s economy. Fairchild TV British Columbia, a Cantonese newscast from Vancouver, reported that according to government sources international students contributed an estimated $21.6 billion to Canada's GDP in 2018. In a Korean newspaper from Toronto, The Korea Times Daily, Universities Canada President Paul Davidson was quoted as saying that international students represent 50%, on average, of the total tuition revenue.
Furthermore, Vansky, a Chinese web daily, pointed out that: “The contribution of these international students to the Canadian economy is not only tuition, but also rent, groceries, transportation, entertainment, and more. International students provided Canada with nearly 170,000 jobs...For the Canadian government, these people are a good source of high-consumption, are highly-skilled immigrants, and can make a beneficial contribution to the economy.”
Commenting on the significance of these figures, CFC News, a Chinese newspaper from Ottawa wrote: “When the times are good, Chinese international students are considered "gold mines" for Canadian universities, but when disaster strikes, this dependency may result in the collapse of the financial systems of these universities.” Evidently, this observation is applicable in the case of not just Chinese but all international students.
A decrease in enrolment seems to be taking effect already. Vansky reported that compared to the first quarter of the year 2019, the first quarter this year has seen a decline in the number of Chinese students who received student visas by 51%. The shift to online classes is also not proving to be helpful. In an interview on OMNI News: Punjabi Edition, a news channel aired from Toronto, representatives of the organization Team We Care said that they have launched a petition for a tuition fee refund from UBC because the international student fees are very high and the students feel that they are not receiving its full value anymore. Team We Care is a group dedicated to helping international students navigate their journey in Canada - the group currently has 6,000 members.
Similarly, CFC News opined: “International students don't want to be paying hundreds of thousands of dollars to be sitting at home looking at their professor on a computer screen. In addition, as racism increases, more and more Chinese international students and parents are starting to consider suspending their schooling, or even preparing to find alternative paths instead of going overseas.”
All hope, however, does not seem to be lost for universities. The Toronto Spanish newspaper El Centro News referred to the IDP Connect poll to state that most aspiring international students say the COVID-19 pandemic is not stopping them from pursuing post-secondary education abroad. Regardless, uncertainty remains the mantra of the pandemic for everything, including higher education.
WEB - Noticias Montreal - Montreal, 26/05/2020 - NEWS, Spanish
Image Source: Noticias Montreal website
Summary Translation: María Gabriela Aguzzi V. - The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed that many of the workers in long-term senior care homes are asylum seekers with irregular status. Therefore, many people have been advocating in recent weeks for the government to allow the asylum seekers to stay in Canada. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that he is not opposed to this option, recognizing that exceptional situations require exceptional measures. Trudeau said that the federal government could find a way to regularize the status of these people. Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino is already in charge of finding a way forward in accordance with what the prime minister said: "We are analyzing how we can recognize this work in order to be able to accelerate the process." Meanwhile, the Quebec government said that it expects to consider the applications of asylum seekers who work in care homes as a priority.