RBC Study Quantifies New Immigrant Experiences

    Having a Good Job and Owning a Home are the Most Likely Indicators of
    Feeling Settled

    TORONTO, Sept. 24 /CNW/ - A new study from RBC and Ipsos Reid shows a
large majority (82 per cent) of new immigrants are happy to be in Canada and
hopeful about their future (82 per cent), but slightly more than half (54 per
cent) feel they are still in the process of settling into their new lives
    "We initiated this study of immigrants who have been in Canada 10 years
or less because we have many customers who have been through the immigration
experience. We wanted to develop a deeper understanding of that experience and
learn more about what makes newcomers feel settled into their new lives," said
Mark Whitmell, RBC's director, Cultural Markets. "For instance, having a
better appreciation of how important something like home ownership is to
people going through this significant life transition, gives us a better
perspective on how we can hopefully help make that goal happen faster."

    Stages of settling in Canada

    According to survey respondents, 19 per cent still feel new to Canada, 54
per cent feel they are getting settled, and 27 per cent feel truly
established. While length of time living in Canada can be a good indicator of
feeling established, this is not always the case. One in ten (11 per cent) new
immigrants who have been in Canada for less than three years already feels
truly established, while one in ten (10 per cent) who have been here for five
to ten years still feels new to Canada.
    "We have learned that regardless of a person's country of origin, age or
economic situation, most newcomers go through a common immigration experience
- from feeling new, to getting settled, to becoming truly established,"
explained Mr. Whitmell. "Each stage has a different focus and each individual
moves through those stages on their own unique timeline."

    Key contributors to feeling settled

    For those respondents who already felt truly established, having a good
job and owning a home were the top indicators that signified becoming settled
in Canada. Twenty eight per cent rank having a good job as their number one
indicator, while 20 per cent say it is owning a home. The third most popular
indicator is getting citizenship (11 per cent); followed by finishing their
education (nine per cent); and owning a business (eight per cent).
    The results are slightly different for those immigrants who don't yet
consider themselves established. Thirty-nine per cent rank having a good job
as the primary signifier of being settled, while 14 per cent say it is owning
their own home. Next comes putting kids through school (11 per cent); owning
their own business (nine per cent); and finishing their education (four per
    Interestingly, the survey pinpointed differences between Chinese and
South Asian new immigrants who feel established in Canada as to what they
consider important in order to feel settled. For South Asian new immigrants
the key factor is owning a home (31 per cent); conversely, Chinese new
immigrants cite having a good job (43 per cent) as the number one indicator of
being settled.

    Attitudes towards life in Canada

    When it comes to attitudes towards life in Canada, new immigrants have
mostly good things to say about their experiences. Three quarters (72 per
cent) agree people make them feel welcome, while two-thirds (66 per cent) say
they feel connected to people and activities outside their own ethnic or
immigrant community and feel able to use their skills to the best of their
ability (57 per cent).
    "The survey results also illuminate the challenges of the immigration
experience," added Mr. Whitmell. "Forty-five per cent of respondents told us
they feel overwhelmed and 35 per cent report being lonely. It's indicators
like these that truly make us stop and think about the personal side of
starting over in a new country. Given the important role immigration plays in
Canada's future, helping newcomers achieve their settlement goals is really a
priority for all of us."

    About the Survey Methodology:

    These are the findings of an RBC /Ipsos Reid survey conducted between
March 15 and April 30, 2007. The poll was based on a randomly selected sample
of 1,000 new immigrants who are 18 years of age or older and have been in
Canada for 10 years or less. With this sample size, the overall results are
considered +/-3.1 percentage points, 19 time out of 20, of what they would
have been if all new immigrants had been surveyed. The survey was conducted by
telephone and the interviews were held in Mandarin, Cantonese, Hindi, Punjabi,
Korean, English and French. The findings were weighted to reflect the actual
regional distribution and ethnic composition of new Canadians immigrating to
Canada within the past 10 years.

For further information:

For further information: Media Contact: Judi Levita, Media Relations,
(416) 974-8810; For full tabular results, please see the Ipsos Reid website at

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