SAINT JOHN, N.B. — A former New Brunswick premier says the federal government should consider a program that would require some immigrants to live in Atlantic Canada for three to five years before getting their citizenship.
Frank McKenna says unless the region can build a larger base of new citizens, immigrants will continue to flock to larger centres like Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver.
Deaths outnumber births in New Brunswick, and McKenna says unless that’s reversed, the aging population won’t be able to afford services like health care.
Former New Brunswick premier Frank McKenna talks with reporters in 2010. (Photo: CP)
New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant says he has already spoken to the new federal government about the aging demographic and will push the issue again when the federal cabinet meets in the province next week.
Prince Edward Island Premier Wade MacLauchlan says boosting immigration is “mission critical.”
Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil says the provinces have a responsibility to create a social fabric so that immigrants who come to the region will want to stay.