Racialized Immigrant Women Focus Groups

Women, Work and the Economy is looking for Racialized, Economic Immigrant Women to participate in virtual focus groups! 

Those interested in participating are asked to join an online focus group discussion with 6-7 other participants to help us gain insights into the specific challenges, barriers, and successes that racialized immigrant women experience in the job market and in attempting to launch their own ventures. The focus group will take place virtually and will last approximately two hours.


To be eligible to participate you must be:

- within the age range of 18-65 years old

- self-identify as a woman

- self-identify as a racialized person (or a visible minority),

- have obtained permanent resident status in Canada within the past 10 years or are working towards permanent residence status through an economic immigration pathway*

- live in Halifax, Ottawa, Montreal, Toronto, Kitchener-Waterloo, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Edmonton, Calgary, or Vancouver

Please sign-up for a screening call here.

Eligible focus group participants will be compensated.

 If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to email the Women, Work, and the Economy research team at wwe@uwaterloo.ca.

This study has been reviewed and received ethics clearance through a University of Waterloo Research Ethics Board (REB #45046).

Frequently Asked Questions

What do you mean by "Racialized" or "Visible Minority"?

In Canada, the Employment Equity Act defines visible minorities as "persons, other than Aboriginal peoples, who are non-Caucasian in race or non-white in colour". The visible minority population consists mainly of the following groups: South Asian, Chinese, Black, Filipino, Arab, Latin American, Southeast Asian, West Asian, Korean and Japanese. The word racialized is a more broad term used to describe those who have been categorized, marginalized, or regarded according to race. To be eligible for this focus groups, you must self-identify as racialized and/or a visible minority.

What do you mean by "Economic Immigration Pathway"?

Economic immigration pathways do not include refugee, family reunification (sponsored), or other humanitarian immigration pathways. Economic immigration pathways include: Express Entry, Provincial Nominee, Quebec-selected skilled workers, Atlantic Immigration Pilot, Start-up Visa, Self-employed, Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot, Agri-food pilot, Health-care workers permanent residence pathway, and Temporary resident to permanent resident pathway. If you are unsure as to whether you fit this criteria, do not hesitate to email us at wwe@uwaterloo.ca for clarification.

I live near an eligible city, but not directly in the city. Am I eligible?

As we are looking to specifically capture those who live within these cities as opposed to surrounding areas, we will ask if your postal code begins with the following characters:

  • Toronto: M
  • Ottawa: K
  • Montreal: H
  • Halifax: B3
  • Vancouver: V5, V6, V7
  • Calgary: T2, T3
  • Edmonton: T5, T6
  • Saskatoon: S7
  • Winnipeg: R2, R3

If your postal code does not begin with these characters, but you live within a 30 minute drive of the downtown core of one of these cities, we will still consider you eligible for the focus groups. If you are still unsure if you are eligible, feel free to email us at wwe@uwaterloo.ca and we can determine if you are eligible.

If I meet the eligibility criteria, am I guaranteed a spot to participate in the focus groups?

As we want our sample to be as representative of the population of raciliazed newcomer women in Canada as possible, we do have some targets of number of responses from each visible minority group in each city. In order to meet and not exceed these targets, we may need to turn down some requests to participate. 

Will the survey be translated into languages other than English?

At this time the focus group is only available in English, however a French version will be available shortly. If you are interested in completing the focus group in French and would like us to let you know when it is available, please send us an email at wwe@uwaterloo.ca.

What can I expect on the video call?

The video call will be conducted by one or two members of our research team and will begin by asking if you have read the information letter for the focus groups and if you have any questions. Then, the member(s) of the research team will confirm your eligibility to participate in the focus groups. If you do meet the eligibility criteria, you will be asked to confirm your consent to participate in the focus groups (the consent questions are contained within the information letter if you would like to review them in advance). You will then be registered for a focus group time, and you will be told approximately when you will be receiving your gift card. The call will generally take less than 15 minutes total of your time.

What kinds of questions are in the focus groups

The focus groups will explore topics related to Background and Immigration, Family and Social Networks, Health, Language, Education, Pre-immigration Work History, Primary Occupations in Canada, Employment, Job Search, Entrepreneurship/Self-Employment, Economic Indicators, Non-Market Labour, and Discrimination.