This blog post has been provoked by conversations with friends, colleagues and current events. There is an accompanying op-ed piece in the LightouseNOW Progress Bulletin: Welcome refugees for their benefit and ours
The accompanying op-ed piece in this weeks paper (read the full article on the lighthouse now website):
The refugee crisis in Europe is the largest movement of people since the aftermath of world war two. From 1946 – 1962 Canada admitted nearly a quarter of a million refugees. Yet here we are faced with a disaster of similar size and we are not taking in the numbers despite the Ivany report and multiple other channels of research on our economy telling us we need to take 7,000 annually.
This is not just a humanitarian cause it presents a viable option for the sustainability of our province. Let’s be clear the refugees that are willing to migrate to Canada to live here are going to be pioneering, courageous and entrepreneurial. It takes major guts and organization to move from your homeland into the unknown. These are exactly the people we need to accelerate the momentum for change in this region.
Rob Batherson, chair of the board of the Halifax Chamber of Commerce said “Syrians, like other immigrant groups that have come to the province in the past, are likely to come into Nova Scotia, create wealth, create jobs, increase tax revenue."
So let’s get over the dominant narrative of fear and get on with it!
I don’t think we can do this one family at a time either. We need to welcome in large numbers at the same time. In my experience, the majority of individual families that are visible minorities in Luneburg County do not stay for long. We should be careful of sponsoring a refugee family when there is the very real possibility that they would choose to relocate to another area where there is a larger immigrant population.
It is hard to feel like you belong when you look different to almost everyone else ...
READ THE FULL ARTICLE ON THE LIGHTHOUSE NOW WEBSITE
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