‘Quebec Plan Will Not Help Newcomers’

Quebec's Coalition government makes good on promise to cut immigration
Coalition Avenir Quebec MNA Simon Jolin-Barrette responds to reporters questions on Tuesday, October 9, 2018 at the legislature in Quebec City. The new Coalition Avenir Quebec government says it will cut immigration to the province by roughly 20 cent next year. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jacques Boissinot

MONTREAL: A Quebec think tank says the province’s plan to cut immigration levels is misguided and will not accomplish its intended goal of better integrating newcomers.

The Institut de recherche et d’informations socio-economiques published a study concluding from publicly available data that immigrants are faring better in Quebec than the government claims.

Researcher Julia Posca says the employment rate among immigrants has risen steadily over the past decade, and almost 60 per cent of immigrants in Quebec are fluent in French.

While Posca says the employment rate for immigrants still lags behind that of the general population, part of that is attribute able to how the province recognizes experience and education.

Photo François Legault

The institute says it is in favour of maintaining 50,000 as the number of immigrants accepted annually by the province, citing the province’s aging population as one factor. The government plans to reduce immigration to about 40,000 this year.

Quebec Immigration MinisterSimon Jolin-Barrette tabled Bill9 in February, to overhaul the system for selecting new comers and allow it to be more selective.