Minister Kenney Urges Employers to Look to Canadians, Including Newcomers, to Tackle Skills Shortages

New Canadians represent a valuable source of skilled labour from which employers in Canada can recruit.

By Employment and Social Development Canada

In his keynote speech today at the B.C. Business Summit, the Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister for Multiculturalism, challenged employers to seek out Canadians and newcomers  to address their skills shortages. New Canadians represent a valuable source of skilled labour from which employers in Canada can recruit.

“Our government’s top priorities are creating jobs and economic growth.  We are committed to fixing the skills mismatch in Canada where we have too many Canadians without jobs and too many jobs without Canadians,” said Minister Kenney. “Canadians, including newcomers, must always be first in line for available jobs. Our government is working with provinces and territories to improve foreign credential recognition so that new Canadians can put their skills to work sooner.”

In 2007, our government established the Foreign Credentials Referral Office to provide internationally trained workers with information and services for credential assessment so they can find work in their fields quickly. Since 2009, internationally trained individuals in 14 occupations can have their qualifications assessed within one year, anywhere in Canada, so they can put their knowledge and skills to work sooner.

Our government also introduced the Foreign Credential Recognition Loans Pilot to help internationally trained workers offset the costs of the foreign credential recognition process.

To date, agreements have been signed with nine organizations across the country to deliver these loans. The federal government continues to partner with the provinces and territories to improve foreign credential recognition.

Furthermore, Economic Action Plan 2013 proposes new measures to connect Canadians to available jobs by equipping them with the skills and training they need. These include the Canada Job Grant, opportunities for apprentices and supporting under-represented groups.

For more information on foreign credential recognition, please consult:http://www.hrsdc.gc.ca/eng/jobs/credential_recognition/index.shtml

To learn more about Canada’s Economic Action Plan, visit actionplan.gc.ca.

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