Citizenship and Social Rights

Canadian society is undergoing dramatic change as a result of immigration policy. During the past decade, Canada has increased the number of temporary migrants working in Canada, while reducing opportunities for migrants to become permanent residents or citizens. Barriers to citizenship are also producing a largely unseen yet growing nonstatus population. Immigrant women with precarious legal status are particularly vulnerable to race-based discrimination, economic insecurity and gender-based violence. These societal changes present unique challenges for social workers when working with immigrants who are denied basic human rights.


In Citizenship and Social Rights, find information on how social rights have been impacted by the interplay between different local, provincial and national laws.  You can also learn how front-line workers and community-based agencies are responding to changes in immigration policy.

This site allows you to consider the social risks for violence among immigrants, while exploring how immigrant women strategically go about seeking safety and belonging. Highlighted, are different advocacy and practice approaches that service workers and community groups are using to support immigrants’ ability to access social rights and manage risks.


Social workers are faced with an ethical quandary: how to affirm social rights for all people irrespective of their legal status. Research findings found in this hub highlight this complex challenge.