Calgary Provisional Psychologist, Mahdi Qasqas, says Canada's population of 1,000,000 Muslims is expected to grow to 2.7 million over the next 15 years. He says the Canadian dilemma in welcoming these new Canadians is a dearth of understanding concerning the diverse inter-cultural differences that exist in Muslim worldviews. It is akin to deciding what the nomenclature 'Christian' means in defining the cultural and religious beliefs of all White Anglo Saxons. Qasqas says this means that many Canadian psychologists are ill prepared to address Muslim issues effectively and without distorted perceptions.
In today's global village those distortions are bleeding into the Canadian fabric particularly concerning the growing global concern of radicalized youth.
Qasqas is just completing his doctorate in Social Work. His Criminal Justice involvements are quickly distinguishing him as a leader in the Canadian vanguard and the nascent work of rehabilitation programs for our radicalized youth. He says, "What are we going to do with these kids when they return home?", speaking of youth participating in 'terror-tourism' on Canadian passports.
Canadian families of all backgrounds, cultures, and religions have been distressed by the choices of their children. Qasqas is working to educate social workers, educators, RCMP, politicians, police, and grieving parents to come together to tackle the issue of criminal radicalization.
Strengthening Canadian Values as a Barrier to Extremism, Our Canada Symposium session (audio)