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Majority Canadians Think Higher Immigration Fuelling Housing Prices And Health-Care Crisis: Poll

63% of respondents expressed the view that the influx of newcomers is burdening the country's education systems.

According to a recent Leger poll, a significant majority of Canadians believe that the escalating immigration levels are exacerbating the housing crisis and straining the health-care system.

The survey, conducted over the weekend, revealed that approximately 75% of participants acknowledged that the surge in immigrants is placing additional pressure on both the housing market and the health-care system. Furthermore, 63% of respondents expressed the view that the influx of newcomers is burdening the country’s education systems.

However, the poll highlights that Canadians also recognize certain advantages of increased immigration. Around 75% of those surveyed agreed that higher immigration contributes to the cultural diversity of the nation, and 63% believe that the arrival of young immigrants enhances the workforce and tax base, benefiting older generations.

Leger gathered opinions from 1,529 individuals through online polling. Despite statistical weighting, the results cannot be assigned a margin of error as online polls are not regarded as truly random samples.

These survey findings underscore the ambivalence Canadians feel about the impact of immigration on the country. Simultaneously, they indicate a shift in public sentiment towards immigration as Canada grapples with affordability issues and challenges in public service delivery.

In 2022, Canada’s population increased by over a million people, including 607,782 non-permanent residents and 437,180 immigrants. Leger’s data reveals a change in attitudes since March 2022, with the proportion of Canadians advocating for increased immigration dropping from 17% to 9%, while those favoring fewer immigrants rose from 39% to 48%.

Regarding immigration targets, the poll indicates that slightly more than half of respondents (53%) believe the planned intake for 2024 and 2025, set at 485,000 and 500,000 permanent residents respectively, is too high. In contrast, 28% believe Canada is on track with the right number of immigrants, and 4% feel the country should welcome more immigrants.

The federal Liberals argue that expanding the population is crucial to address labor shortages and an aging demographic. Despite debates on Canada’s capacity for increased immigration, Immigration Minister Marc Miller recently presented new targets in Parliament, proposing a steady intake of 500,000 new permanent residents in 2026.

Parvasi Media Group