Archive for January 2016

What Can Trudeau Do For Us?

Image Source: Mohammad Jangda

On November 4 of 2015, Justin Trudeau of the Liberal Party of Canada assumed office as the country’s Prime Minister. Indeed, there was a mixture of reactions into it especially if you’re not a supporter of the liberal party or their ideology. Anyhow, as much as I hate doing the “us and them” mentality, I will talk about what some of us have in mind with respect to having a new Prime Minister: What can Justin Trudeau do for us youth immigrants.  

As I scroll on the liberal party’s website (www.liberal.ca/realchange/) for their platform, I thought that Trudeau is pretty much aiming for equality. That’s actually good news for us because now we can be sure that equality and fairness is not only one of the priorities of the government but it is being valued as well. I also saw a handful of things that I think will have some impact on us (in a good way, of course).  

Prime Minister’s Youth Advisory Council  

First, on “young people”, Trudeau’s government is planning on creating a council that will give a “non-partisan advice” to the Prime Minister about issues Canada is facing. The council is going to be composed of young adults ages 16-24. 

What this means for us 

If Trudeau actually goes forward with this, this could be good news for not just us, immigrants, but to all youth.  Indeed there are already a lot of group or initiatives that are consist of youth such as us, but a group or rather a council dedicated to giving advice to the Prime Minister is pretty big deal. Imagine if one of those members in the council is an immigrant like us, we will have that opportunity to give advice to the prime minister on issues that involve us. I just think that advice coming from the people who are actually going to be impacted by such issues are the best people to get an opinion from. 

Renewed Youth Employment Strategy 

Trudeau’s government plan on creating 40,000 youth jobs including 5,000 youth green jobs each year for the next three years. 

What this means for us 

Well, this means jobs! I know it may not be particularly hard for us to obtain a part time job, but what mostly draws me to this plan of Trudeau is the “green jobs”. It may not be that related to immigration issues, but I think that this is a good starting place for us to build connections and with people who share our interests.  Moreover, it’s not as easy to get a job that concerns the environment as most of these jobs often involve the agencies of the government and government jobs. 


Residency Time credit for International Students and Temporary Residents 

Finally, Justin Trudeau plans on restoring the residency time credit for international students and temporary residents. Additionally, they will also the Canadian Experience Class to lessen immigration difficulties faced by international students. 

What this means for us

I think this a great example of how Justin Trudeau is trying to show that Canada is indeed a nation of diversity. Trudeau’s making it easier for international students to become residents here. I have often encountered international students who are having trouble making friends because in their head, they’re international students – not a resident, but someone whose life here is unsure. They don’t know if they can join clubs or group that cater to immigration matters even when they intent to live here for the rest of their life because they’re labeled as international students. Now, if Justin Trudeau actually executes this plan, this will help international students on a more social and, I guess, emotional level. They would feel more welcome and be encouraged to be part of the community. They will be also perceived as someone who are here to contribute to Canada and not the stereotypical “leech” that gets more privileges in school just because they pay more.  

Hopefully, Trudeau stays true to this platform. Although, we already see that he intends on doing so as he recently appointed a gender-equal cabinet. It’s nice to see that Canada is going back to its principles – welcoming people who want a new start in their lives.  With regards to us immigrants, I think that Trudeau will not fail us since he’s also quite young himself. I know that’s rather an absurd assumption, but  I just think that Trudeau should care about the youth as his age was one of the attacks that his opponents used on him, claiming that he is inexperienced. I hope that this will compel Trudeau to appreciate our opinion as he knows firsthand what if he feels like to be disregarded because of your age. 


Saturday, 30 January 2016
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Vancouver Immigrant Youth (VANITY) Blog is an online space made for youth, by youth. Here, you will find stories and experiences written by youth immigrants who once felt how challenging it was to be a newcomer in Vancouver. If you are a newcomer in Vancouver (or anywhere in Canada), we hope to give you all the resources you need to feel comfortable in this country. We hope to give you tips and advices on how we adjusted to our lives here as youth immigrants. Through this site, we want to empower you to bring out your full potential.

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