Priority to Jobs
The Conservative Party of Quebec supports the arrival of new immigrants in Quebec. Immigrants can partly offset our demographic shrinkage and can enrich the pool of our workforce.
Beyond these utilitarian considerations, the party wants Quebec to be a haven where the integration of newcomers is accomplished in the most harmonious way possible. Thus, we will have an influx of future citizens ready to love and adopt our customs freely and through interaction. The selection of immigrants will be based on a balance between economic, cultural and demographic needs.
The means chosen by the Conservative Party to achieve these objectives are threefold:
an enlightened selection of immigrants, with particular emphasis on the economic integration of immigrants in Quebec (according to the needs of the workforce or entrepreneurial skills);
a welcoming policy where learning our language, our history and our traditions are especially essential; and
an effective policy on integration in the workplace at their skill levels, including recognition of skills acquired abroad.
The issue of accommodation vis-à-vis immigrants is an issue that draws our attention. We will approach it as follows: a clear definition of the problem (including distinguishing between the public and private sphere), usage of existing tools and appropriate and minimalist solutions based on the reasonableness of the accommodation requested and not on the reason for which it is requested.
A successful integration into the labour market is part of the solution. Immigrants, like any other citizen, must meet their own basic needs and those of their families. Free citizens will assume their obligations, the responsibility for their choices and the consequences of their actions without waiting for the government to do it for them. In addition, integration does not mean assimilation. To integrate is to take part in the economic life (working, investing or starting a business) and to take to heart the immediate environment, the city, the community. Integration will not occur if, on the one hand, the labour market is too rigid or closed and, on the other hand, if social programs are too generous.
The Charter of Rights and Freedoms contains principles that must guide our practices. Individual freedoms and a secular state will be respected. During the selection process, would-be immigrants will be informed of this reality. Common sense and the desire to live together will guide us in the application of these laws and regulations and to resolve individual cases. Our core values will be respected and the problems will not be magnified for political or ideological reasons. We recognize that integration is not a one-way street but requires an effort by all. Patience, education, empathy and respect are watchwords for the reception and integration of new Quebecers. However, there is no reason for us to encourage radical integrists and we will therefore ensure that those who hold those views are not subsidized nor are they asked to be involved in the integration of new immigrants.