«Non quia timemus non audemus, sed quia non audemus, timemus»
-(Sénèque)
«Ce n'est pas parce que nous avons peur que nous n'osons pas; c'est parce que nous n'osons pas que nous avons peur».

Taux de chômage élevé chez les immigrants diplômés

Parler français ne suffit pas à trouver un emploi
Suivi de "French no boon for allophones"

La Presse
mardi 15 avril 2008

Duchesne, André - Il ne suffit pas pour un immigrant de bien connaître le français pour trouver un emploi au Québec. En comparant des groupes de personnes du même âge et du même niveau de scolarité, une nouvelle étude indique au contraire que ce sont les allophones parlant uniquement le français qui ont le plus haut taux de chômage.

C’est ce qui se dégage des données du recensement de 2006 compilées et analysées par l’Institut des études canadiennes, un organisme de Montréal.

L’institut a principalement compilé les indicateurs de chômage chez les diplômées universitaires de 35 à 44 ans. Ainsi, à Montréal, les allophones de ce groupe ne parlant que le français ont un taux de chômage de 24,7%. En comparaison, le taux de chômage des francophones ne parlant que le français n’est que de 3,1%. Les anglophones de Montréal ne parlant que l’anglais ont un taux de chômage de 4,3%.

"La langue n’est pas le seul facteur en matière d’intégration économique", conclut le directeur général de l’Institut, Jack Jedwab. À la lumière de ces données, on constate qu’il y a d’autres facteurs importants d’intégration, dont la capacité pour les immigrants à pénétrer des réseaux existants d’embauche."

Un exemple simple de ces réseaux : la fonction publique. "Le niveau de représentation des minorités dans la fonction publique ou dans des organismes qui dépendent de subventions gouvernementales est très bas, dit M. Jedwab, et ce, en dépit des améliorations des dernières années."

Les données pour Montréal se répètent en région. Parfois l’écart des taux de chômage entre immigrants ne parlant que le français et les autres groupes est encore plus grand.

L’analyse demeure toutefois partielle. On remarque par exemple que dans le groupe des allophones de 15 à 24 ans résidant à Montréal, le taux de chômage est beaucoup plus élevé chez ceux qui ne parlent que l’anglais (31,8%) que chez ceux ne parlant que le français (19,2%). M. Jedwab n’a pas d’explications pour ce renversement de tendance. Il dit avoir mis l’accent de son étude sur le groupe des 35-44 ans, parce qu’il est le plus représentatif des personnes sur le marché du travail.

Au ministère de l’Immigration et des Communautés culturelles du Québec, on se dit conscient de la situation. C’est pourquoi, dit Stéphane Goupil, attaché de la presse de la ministre Yolande James, le gouvernement a récemment investi 68,6 millions de dollars dans des programmes visant l’intégration des immigrants.

À titre d’exemple, il parle de la visioconférence, un outil permettant à de futurs immigrants et des employeurs de se parler à distance. "De cette façon, les employeurs peuvent évaluer les niveaux de compétence des personnes", dit-il.


French no boon for allophones : study

Bleak Portrait. Analysis of census finds disparity in employment levels with francophones

Elizabeth Thompson, The Gazette Monday, April 14

A new study reveals a large gap in employment levels between francophones and allophones whose only official language spoken was French.

The analysis of census figures appears to contradict the widespread assumption that language represents the key obstacle facing immigrants seeking jobs in Quebec.

It shows the jobs gap generally is largest outside Montreal, raising serious questions about the government’s policy of encouraging immigrants to settle in the province’s regions.

The survey also calls into question claims by opposition parties that the solution to unemployment among immigrants is to do a better job of teaching them French.

"The regionalization program has by and large been a failure, and maybe this explains why it hasn’t worked," said Jack Jedwab, executive director of the Association for Canadian Studies, which conducted the analysis of 2006 census figures.

Jedwab wrote in the report : "Since we have controlled for education and age, the gaps remain disconcerting and suggest strongly that, contrary to popular assumptions, language knowledge may not be the principle obstacle in securing employment and hence in ensuring ’successful’ integration."

In Sherbrooke, Jedwab found a gap of nearly 30 points in the employment level between francophones and allophones who spoke only French.

In Montreal, the gap was 21.6 points.

There could be a variety of possible causes, ranging from lack of networks to find jobs, lack of Canadian experience and inability to have foreign credentials recognized to outright discrimination, Jedwab said.

The study also found that unemployment rates dropped significantly for allophones who were bilingual, suggesting that learning English as well as French might help compensate for other barriers to employment.

In his analysis, Jedwab looked at a narrow group of people - those with university degrees between age 35 and 44.

What he found was that while unemployment rates for allophones were higher across the board, the gap was highest among allophones whose only official language spoken was French - nearly twice the rate for allophones whose only official language spoken was English.

Across Quebec, the unemployment rate for French-speaking allophones was 23 per cent compared with 10.6 per cent for those who spoke English. The unemployment rate for allophones who spoke both English and French was slightly lower at 10.2 per cent.

By comparison, the unemployment level in Quebec for anglophones was 4.5 per cent for those who spoke only English and 4.9 per cent for those who were bilingual. For francophones, the rate was 2.6 per cent for those who spoke French only, as well as for those who were bilingual.

"What it tells us is that Quebec is definitely encountering some major challenges when it comes to the economic integration of French speakers in particular," Jedwab said.

In Montreal, the analysis found similar results.

The highest unemployment rate was for allophones who spoke only French (24.7 per cent), followed by allophones who spoke only English (10.7 per cent) and bilingual allophones (10.2 per cent.)

By comparison, the unemployment rate for anglophones who spoke English only was 4.3 per cent, slightly better than the 5.2 per cent unemployment rate for bilingual anglophones.

Among francophones, the unemployment rate was 3.1 per cent for unilingual francophones and 2.8 per cent for bilingual francophones.

Outside the Montreal area, however, the statistics paint a very different picture.

In Quebec City, the unemployment rate for French-speaking allophones was 13.1 per cent compared with 1.7 per cent for unilingual francophones.

The unemployment rate for bilingual allophones was 13.6 per cent, compared to 3.6 per cent for bilingual anglophones and 2.6 per cent for bilingual francophones. The highest unemployment rate - 20 per cent - was for allophones whose only official language known was English.

In Sherbrooke, Jedwab’s analysis found the unemployment rate among allophones who spoke only French was 30 per cent, compared with an unemployment rate of 1.1 per cent for francophones who spoke only French. Among those who spoke both French and English, the unemployment rate was three per cent among francophones, 6.1 per cent among anglophones and 14 per cent among allophones.

Jedwab said the study also calls into question the assumption of some Quebecers, including opposition parties, that the only thing needed to address the high unemployment rate among immigrants to Quebec is to do a better job of teaching them French. "There is a risk (that) in making this the absolute issue and making it the panacea to solving the integration challenges that Quebecers are encountering - which I think the opposition parties have tried to exploit - we are losing sight of some serious issues that immigrants that are French speakers are encountering in terms of their integration, judging by these rates of unemployment and the gaps with non-immigrant French speakers in particular."

Jedwab’s study comes only a month after the Quebec government announced a $24-million increase in its budget to help immigrants integrate and learn French and introduced a new tax credit to encourage companies to provide French courses for immigrants.

ethompson@thegazette.canwest.com

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Immigration : francisation et intégration

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