I’m just back in New York after a great few days in Toronto. While my visit this time around involved many miles of walking, coffee at cafes like Manic and Sublime, and delicious meals every direction, I also appreciated the chance to learn a bit more about the influx of Irish citizens moving to Canada.
Guy Chazan wrote an extensive feature in the Wall Street Journal timed to Ireland’s elections last year about the “new wave of emigration” (within the European Union as well as the likes of Australia, Canada, and New Zealand), but, for all interested, I’ve compiled a number of other relevant articles below. If you have any additional recommendations, please let me know or share in the comments.
If you have five minutes to watch as well, DIASPORA is a short film screened back in March (2012) at the Toronto Irish Film Festival featuring glimpses into the thoughts and experiences of some who’ve come from Ireland to Toronto in recent years:
“Irish job-seekers hope for greener pastures in Canada”
The Toronto Star, Nicholas Keung
10 May 2010
Karl Gardner, deputy head of the Embassy of Ireland, said Irish people have a long tradition of adventure and migration. While the island’s population stands at 4.5 million, there are an estimated 75 million people of Irish descent around the world, including 4.35 million in Canada. “We have always travelled,” Gardner said from Ottawa. “The sense is it is something that we do.”
Canada’s last influx of Irish immigrants, following Ireland’s War of Independence and the Great Depression, ended by the 1960s.The age difference between the two groups doesn’t go unnoticed: “I think there’s a bit of a void,” says Donal Ward McCarthy, who moved to Toronto from Cork in 2002. “There’s a clear gap between the older generation and growing number of young Irish immigrants in Toronto.”
“The Irish unemployed seek greener shores in Toronto”
The Globe and Mail, Ian Merringer
20 August 2011
The migration is so steady that the Irish government last week moved to set up an immigrant services centre at the Ireland Fund of Canada’s downtown offices. For the first time, Irish immigrants to Toronto will have a staffed centre for assistance with jobs, housing and visa issues.
“Canada calls out for thousands of Irish workers to fill job vacancies”
Irish Independent, Allison Bray
19 November 2011
“We’ve surpassed the US now with emigration and are second behind Australia,” [Loyola Hearn, the Canadian Ambassador to Ireland] said. And such is the level of emigration and business between Canada and Ireland that the embassy is spearheading a campaign to establish regular direct flights between the two countries, he added.
More than 7,000 Irish people moved to Canada last year, with approximately 60 per cent settling in Toronto, and the majority of the remainder choosing to live in Vancouver. Housing in Canada varies greatly between provinces and territories, cities and suburbs, so what can you expect when searching for a new home, and where can you go for advice?
“Ireland, inching back from the brink, battles to reverse the emerald migration tide”
The Toronto Star, Niamh Scallan
28 April 2012
“We have two responsibilities to young people,” [Deputy Prime Minister of Ireland] Gilmore told a crowd at the opening of a downtown [Toronto] Irish immigration support centre on St. Patrick’s Day. “To create opportunities in Ireland for those who choose to come back and to let them know we do not forget them … they’ll be back.”