Glaring gender imbalance in Indo-Canadian community

GENDER

The fact that there are far more boys than girls born to Indian immigrants in Canada should come as no surprise. It is an issue that has been raised before and mostly ignored by the community.

This study however goes a bit further and has identified the trend to be more pronounced in families whose mother tongue is Punjabi.

The study published in the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology Canada, reveals that regardless of the number of years lived in Canada, the preference for boys remains the same.

The practice of sex selection remains entrenched within the community. Women who already have two female children are most at risk for abortions in the second trimester, when parents can learn the sex of the fetus.

The latest study shows that women born in India who already have two daughters gave birth to 192 baby boys in Ontario for every 100 girls. The sex ratios are so distorted, they cannot be explained by natural causes, Dr. Urquia said. Across the globe, by comparison, the odds of having a boy over a girl are slightly higher: 107 boys for every 100 girls.

Traditionally, Indians have mostly celebrated the birth of a son and have been lukewarm or even unhappy with the birth of a daughter.

The study analyzed 46,834 birth records for Indian-born mothers who delivered up to three live births in Ontario hospitals between April, 1993, and March, 2014, and who immigrated to Canada between 1985 and 2012. Mothers who gave birth to twins or triplets were excluded. The study also looked at the mother’s birth place, her mother tongue and how long she had been in Canada.

Among all the mothers having their third child, nearly twice as many males were born compared with females if the previous two children were girls. The ratio was even higher among women whose mother tongue was Punjabi: 240 boys to 100 girls. The ratio of males to females did not differ according to when women arrived in Canada.

This is an issue that would require someone of the stature of our self-proclaimed feminist PM Justin Trudeau to express his outrage at this state of affairs and direct Maryam Monsef Minister of Status of Women to hold public consultations on the issue of missing Punjabi girl children who are lost to abortions. – CINEWS

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