In order to combat racism, Canada is revamping its anti-racism strategy. This means that the immigration process to Canada may never be the same again. Acting Deputy Minister of Immigration Caroline Xavier stated in a statement that the injustices that could no longer be ignored would forever mark the lives of Canadian citizens. The ‘distinctive impacts of COVID-19, the surge of anti-Asian hate crimes during the pandemic, and the rising voices of indigenous peoples, Black, racialized, and marginalized people in Canada reignited the global movement against racism in the aftermath of George Floyd’s murder in the United States in May 2020,’ according to Xavier.
According to an earlier government statement, ‘Racism is no longer an untouchable subject. We have actively encouraged courageous conversations about racism and reconciliation at all levels of the Department, and we have grown more mature in discussing and addressing these issues. Many initiatives in the last year have aimed to shift mindsets’. However, since July 2020, the Canadian Immigration Department has established an Anti-Racism Task Force to educate senior management and staff about anti-racism. The tactic was dubbed Anti-Racism Strategy 1.0. Its stated goal was to eliminate racism from Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) operations, management methods, and policies.
According to the government, key accomplishments of the Canada government’s Anti-Racism Strategy 1.0 include the inclusion of equity objectives in managers’ and executives’ performance agreements, higher workforce targets to increase the representation of Black, Indigenous, and racialized employees, and the development of racial impact assessment and bias identification tools and frameworks for policy development, risk management, and operational decision-making. Furthermore, it has gathered race information through yearly client surveys.
Strategy 2.0, which is in effect until 2024, provides a broad framework that, when compared to recent anti-racism measures implemented by the Canadian government and the IRCC, provides a broad framework. It enables authorities to fine-tune their anti-racism efforts through a more concentrated effort. The goal is to develop a model for system change that includes specific, actionable steps as well as a monitoring framework. Meanwhile, according to IRCC critics on social media, African students who apply to Canadian colleges and universities are rejected at a much higher rate than international students from other countries.