Many highly educated immigrants are working in low-paying, low-level jobs and increasingly feel frustrated. Others, who represent a burgeoning undocumented class, are forced to work in precarious jobs due to their lack of status.
On the surface, all seems calm.There have been no race riots here as in France, no formation of anti-immigration parties as in Britain and the Netherlands.
But some experts worry the increasing creation of an immigrant underclass will brew trouble — sadly ironic in a region that for decades has taken pride in and built a reputation on its multiculturalism and acceptance of immigrants from around the world. By 2017, the GTA is forecast to become home to a predominantly non-European population.
A recent backlash over the Royal Bank of Canada’s move to replace Canadian workers with foreign workers, and a battle in Brampton over a townhouse development that erupted along cultural lines with accusations of shady “Indian politics,” reveal simmering tensions. And the Conservative Party’s recent attempt to crack down on abuses to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program has done little to appease critics.
“While immigrants and immigration is the heart and soul of the country, if you look at the main basis of inequality in Canada, along with gender, it’s based on race and immigrant status,” said Yogendra Shakya, senior research scientist at Access Alliance.