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ICT Immigrant Employment & Integration: Challenges and Services

August 20, 2008

Over the past 18 months, Minister Pupatello has been leading the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade’s (MEDT) industry consultation efforts with Ontario’s Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) sector. During this time, the Minister has hosted 5 Ontario ICT Roundtables and staffs have coordinated 11 working group sessions in order to develop and implement a series of recommendations to help maintain the competitiveness of Ontario’s ICT sector. Implementing measures to sustain and increase Ontario’s high-skill talent labour pool are a top priority for the ICT sector. As a key component in developing a broader Talent Strategy for the sector, the ICT industry has come forward with a number of requests around immigration related issues.  On May 1, MEDT hosted a successful seminar for ICT HR professionals on rules, regulations and strategies for recruiting foreign workers.

As a follow-up, MEDT will be hosting a morning seminar on August 20th, 2008 to address the challenges employers face integrating newcomers into Ontario’s ICT workforce. The half-day program will be split into two parts: (See agenda).  The session is hosted by the Ontario Government and is offered free of charge.  Seating is limited so please register early for this event.  A draft program is attached.

1. The first section will involve presenting information to ICT employers on challenges for immigrant integration, and specific products/services to address these challenges (the solutions), followed by a Q/A period. Through consultation with government partners and key industry stakeholders, three priority challenges have been identified and will be addressed in this session, including: Workplace Language & Communications, Inclusive Recruitment Strategies, Organization Readiness.

2. The second part of the program will be an open marketplace style forum for employers to interact with selected organizations that work in the field of immigrant integration and meet the specific needs of the industry. Organizations to showcase their programs/services to the audience, allow for face-to-face meetings, and an opportunity for employers to follow-up on their particular needs.