“The Government of Canada wants newcomers to integrate into Canada. That is why we have tripled settlement funding since 2005-06,” said Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism. “We are committed to ensuring the distribution of settlement funding is fair and that immigrants receive the same level of service, regardless of where they choose to settle.”
Settlement funds for 2012-2013, recently announced, amount to $576.8 million (allocated to all provinces and territories outside Quebec), compared to $184.7 million in 2005-2006 – this translates into $2,816 per immigrant.
According to Chris Gelineau, Saskatchewan’s Director of Operation for Citizenship and Immigration Canada, “the main programs supported by this funding include language programs and support for helping immigrants get used to living, shopping, banking, and working in Canada.”
Since immigration patterns are changing, with more immigrants bypassing the traditional hub of Ontario, more of this settlement funding is finding its way into other provinces to match their immigrant-intake.
In Saskatchewan, for example, settlement funds have increased by $15.5 million in the past seven years.
Since Ontario’s proportional share of new immigrants in Canada has gone from 64% in 2005, to 52% in 2010, the updated national settlement funding formula ensures that funds are corresponding rejiggered.
Quebec’s own settlement funding is a slice of the overall 2011-2012 (at minimum) $258.4 million grant the federal government provides Quebec, according to the Canada-Quebec Accord, to cover settlement services, immigration and resettlement of refugees.