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Frontiers of Canadian Migration
Over a century ago, immigrants to the Prairies realized their dream of making a home in the great frontier. By continuing to attract people from around the world, Canada is realizing a national dream of being an equitable, diverse and innovative society.
There are now new frontiers to explore and new challenges to overcome. Migrants are arriving from non-traditional source countries, representing a vast range of linguistic, ethnic and religious diversity. The strong economy in Canada in general and in the Prairies in particular has brought an increasing number of temporary foreign workers. Smaller communities - including rural and francophone minority communities - are now experiencing unprecedented growth through immigration.
The new trends in migration call for renewed thinking about local, regional and national policies for immigration and integration. The 11th National Metropolis Conference, March 19-22, 2009 in Calgary - a city poised to become one of Canada's major immigrant-receiving cities - brought together researchers, policy-makers and community practitioners to explore the frontiers of research and practice in six policy priority areas:
1) Citizenship and Social, Cultural and Civic Integration; 2) Economic and Labour Market Integration; 3) Family, Children and Youth; 4) Housing and Neighbourhoods; 5) Justice, Policing and Security ; and 6) Welcoming Communities: The Role of the Host Communities in Attracting, Integrating and Retaining Newcomers and Minorities.
Recognizing the growing interconnectedness of the local with the national and the global, the conference was a good opportunity for participants to develop a better understanding of immigration and diversity in the Prairies and how this will build a better future for Canada.
This year's conference was be held at the Hyatt Regency Calgary and the TELUS Convention Centre and consisted of plenary sessions and workshops, along with poster presentations and exhibits.