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Canada is a top spot for many South Asian immigrants to migrate to in search of a better life. 

However, upon arrival, many South Asian immigrants in Canada face a myriad of barriers and challenges in their search of decent and meaningful employment opportunities that are in line with their educational and professional work experiences. Despite high levels of language proficiency, education, and having years of experience in their field, most South Asian immigrants have to start from scratch when they immigrate to Canada due to invalidation of their experiences as “not Canadian” by employers, and dismissal of their education credentials as “not good enough” by education institutions. Women and people with disabilities face additional barriers and challenges to finding decent work.

South Asians immigrants in Toronto are not content with survival jobs; they aspire to have a career which is sustainable and offers benefits to support their families. The path forward can only be that of decent employment. Significant reforms in employment legislation that protect precarious workers, international students, and temporary workers are needed to better protect these marginalized individuals in the labour market. Changes also need to be made in business processes, settlement assistance, and education regulatory bodies so that South Asian immigrants have their foreign credentials recognized as being worthy enough for the Canadian labour market. If they are good enough to pass the immigration system, they are good enough to have the same employment outcomes as their non-racialized counterparts. 

In the late 1980s, CASSA was founded on the principle of supporting South Asian immigrants with credential recognition. Over three decades later, we still see qualified South Asian immigrants struggling to find decent employment. South Asian immigrants have faced enough of this systemic racism, it is high time that all actors and stakeholders work together to improve their employment outcomes. 

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