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Immigration after WWII

While the refugees (DP - Displaced Person)​ were in the camps, country representatives would interview the displaced person to determine their skills and ensure they were healthy and free from disease like tuberculosis or typhus.  Once accepted, the British troops drove the displaced person to the train station and from there, they would wait to board a ship.  The criteria for admission into Canada, was to commit to a one year contract or be sponsored by a relative who lived in Canada.  Education was not necessarily an asset. Single, healthy young men were most in demand to work as labourers on farms, forests, mining or railroad.  Females could only be employed as domestic or hospital workers. . In 1945, the population of Canada at that time was 11 million people. It is estimated that 7,500 Slovenian refugees were accepted by Canada. However, it is believed that a total of 75,000 Slovenian refugees emigrated to overseas countries.

 ​Before they boarded the ship, they signed a contract stating they would work for a one year period at a place selected by the Canadian Department of Labour. Since they could not read English, the translator also signed the document verifying they performed the interpretation in the native language of the immigrant.  Then onto a boat for 8 to 10 days crossing the stormy Atlantic and docking 
at Pier 21 in Halifax, Nova Halifax. These political refugees were the second wave of Slovenian immigration. In Halifax, the Canadian officials  processed the passengers and each one was given a tag identifying the new destination city and concluded with the passenger getting their landed immigrant status.  They boarded the train and went west.  

It took about three days to get from Halifax to Union Station in Toronto. The train stopped at various cities where the immigrants disembarked according to the location of their contract.  The farmers chose their labourers and took them to their farm or place of employment. The employer had to supply room and board and pay a monthly wage of fourty-five dollars, which was half the wage that would be paid to a Canadian citizen.  Depending on the employer, some had better experiences than others.
Since they did not have a choice as to which city or town they would be placed, they were spread all across Canada, working on the farms in the prairies, in the mines or forests of Northern Ontario, or on the building of the Canadian railway between Montreal and Peterborough. After they served their one year contract, many made their way to the Toronto area to reunite with other Slovenians where they were able to help each other find jobs and lodging. 

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