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Historically, Canada has been a nation of immigrants, with 16-20% of its citizens being foreign born. Most immigrant research addresses the issues of integration and adjustment of young and adult immigrants, with little work on aging. There are numerous books on immigrants and books on aging, but there are few that have considered the topics of both diversity and aging. Diversity and Aging among Immigrant Seniors in Canada breaks from that tradition and offers an eclectic collection of original research from among Canada's leading researchers on aging and immigrants. Some researchers refer to this emerging field as Ethno-gerontology.

There are two interesting groups of immigrant seniors: those who entered Canada at over 65 years of age, and those who aged in Canada. Most Canadians are surprised to learn that the senior population of seniors has a higher percentage of immigrants (19.6%) than the general population (13.7%). As Canadians age, the country's composition of immigrant seniors has also changed from mainly European to greater cultural and ethnic diversity from Africa and Asia. This cultural and ethnic diversity has social/health/economic policy implications and impacts on programs and services delivered to seniors.

Diversity and Aging among Immigrant Seniors in Canada is divided into two main sections. In Part 1, the chapters explore general and universal issues such as national trends and demographics, theoretical orientations, issues of culture and legal dimensions, poverty and income, and end-of-life care. In Part 2, the chapters examine issues pertaining to specific ethnic groups. For example, there are chapters on the social well-being of Chinese immigrants, determinants of mental health for Iranian seniors, family dynamics for aging Haitian elders, and emerging issues for Punjabi families.

Diversity and Aging among Immigrant Seniors in Canada offers both breadth and depth to the topic of aging among immigrants, and is a must read for social work and health care professionals, students in health and social services, policy and program planners and families of aging immigrants. It is written in a language that crosses disciplines, shedding professional jargon, making it an informative and engaging read for professionals, researchers, and the general public.

Table of Contents

1. Elderly Immigrants in Canada: Changing Faces and Greying Temples – Douglas Durst (University of Regina)
2. Integration Outcomes for Immigrant Seniors in Canada: A Review of Literature 2000-2007 – Herbert C. Northcott and Jennifer L. Northcott (University of Alberta)
3. Theorizing About Aging and Immigration – Lynn McDonald (University of Toronto)
4. Promises, Promises: Cutural and Legal Dimensions of Sponsorship for Immigrant Seniors – Sharon Koehn, Charmaine Spencer and Eunju Hwang (Providence Health, British Columbia)
5. Service Use by Immigrant Families For an Older Relative: A Question of Culture or Structure? – Jean-Pierre Lavoie, Nancy Guberman (l’Universite du Quebec à Montreal) and Shari Brotman (McGill University)
6. The Incidence of Poverty Among Canada’s Elderly Immigrants – Hugh Grant and James Townsend (University of Winnipeg)
7. Restorative Justice Mediation for Elder Abuse Among Ethno-Racial Minority Women – Atsuko Matsuoka, Antionette Clarke and Darlene Murphy (York University)
8. End-of-Life Care for Immigrant Seniors – Michael MacLean, Nuelle Novik (University of Regina), Kavita Ram (Extendicare Homes, Regina) and Allison Schmidt (University of Regina)
9. Cutural Diversity in Long-Term Care: Confusion With Cultural Tensions – Douglas Durst (University of Regina)
10. Senior Immigrants’ Support Needs and Preferences of Support Intervention Programs – Edward Makwarimba, Miriam Stewart, Zhi Jones, and Knox Makumbe (University of Alberta), Edward Shizha (Wilfrid Laurier University), and Denise Spitzer (University of Ottawa)
11. Social Capital and Health and Well-being of Elderly Chinese Immigrants in Canada – Daniel Lai (University of Calgary) and Shirley Chau (University of British Columbia, Okanagan)
12. Elder Abuse: Perspectives in the Chinese-Canadian Community – Christine A. Walsh and Shelina Hassanali (University of Calgary)
13. The African Immigrant Experience With Reference to Aging – Douglas Durst and Godknows Kumassah (University of Regina)
14. Social-cultural Determinants of Mental Health Among Elderly Iranian Immigrants – Siavash Jafari, Richard Mathias (University of British Columbia) and Souzan Baharlou (Association of Medical Doctors of British Columbia)
15. South Asian Immigrant Seniors Living in Edmonton: Diverse Experiences – Cheuk Fan Ng (Athabasca University) and Herbert C. Northcott (University of Alberta)
16. Gentrifcation, Displacement and Resistance: A Case Study of Portuguese Seniors in Toronto’s “Little Portugal” – Carlos Teixeira (University of British Columbia)
17. Caring for Older Haitian Parents: The Impact of Immigration on Family Dynamics and Caring Activities Among Family Caregivers – Louise Racine (University of Saskatchewan)
18. An Exploration of the Factors Impacting Upon Elderly Ukrainian Immigrant Women – Nuelle Novik (University of Regina)
19. Filial Piety, Financial Independence, and Freedom: Explaining the Living Arrangements of Older Korean Immigrants – Ann H. Kim (York University)
20. Predicting Cultural Adaptation of Elderly Chinese Immigrants Within a Bidirectional Model of Acculturation: Canadian Acculturation and Chinese Identification – Ben Kuo (University of Windsor)
21. The Punjabi Elderly: Reflections on Culture, Background and Emerging Issues – Gurnam Singh Sanghera (Retired, Vancouver)
22. Concluding Thoughts: “All Bets Are Off” – Douglas Durst and Michael MacLean (University of Regina)
Canadian Research Centres on Aging

Douglas Durst

Douglas Durst, PhD, is a professor of social work at the University of Regina. For over 10 years, he has served on the Canadian Council on Multicultural Health and has published widely on social work practice with diverse communities.

Michael MacLean

Michael MacLean, PhD, is professor emeritus, social work, at the University of Regina.