The Ontario government is helping internationally trained professionals work in their fields sooner by investing $250,000 for a loan program, Citizenship and Immigration Minister Mike Colle announced on June 3, 2006.
"Internationally trained professionals have the skills, education and global experience that Ontario's economy needs to prosper," said Colle at "A World of Experiences" conference attended by approximately 500 skilled newcomers. "This investment will help ensure there are no financial barriers to success for newcomers."
The Ontario government is partnering with the Maytree Foundation on a loans program that will provide loans of up to $5,000 to cover assessment, training and exam costs.
"The Maytree Foundation is committed to equality and access for newcomers and we applaud the Ontario government for partnering with The Maytree Foundation to bring the loans program to more newcomers," said Executive Director, Ratna Omidvar. "When finances are not a barrier, more newcomers have the opportunity to access the training they need to work in their field."
The loans program is another way the McGuinty government is helping newcomers succeed and contribute to the strength and growth of Ontario. The Ontario government is breaking down barriers through a comprehensive plan for newcomer success. It includes:
- Proposed legislation called Fair Access to Regulated Professions Act, 2006. If passed, this would ensure newcomers have a fair shot at working in their field through a fair and open registration process.
- Internationally Trained Internships for Professionals: The Ontario government is leading by example. It's is the first province in Canada to launch an internship program for newcomers in all ministries, and crown corporations across the Ontario public service.
- Labour Market Integration: The Ontario government has invested $34 million dollars over the past three years to expand newcomer bridge training programs to help thousands of skilled newcomers work in more than 100 trades and professions.
- Immigration Website: The Ontario government has invested approx $1 million dollars to help five Ontario cities promote themselves as international gateways to newcomers through the Ontario government's immigration website - www.OntarioImmigration.ca
- Regional Newcomer Employment Networks: The Ontario government in partnership with the business sector is encouraging more internship/mentorship opportunities for newcomers.
"Our government is on the side of newcomers who want the opportunity to succeed. An investment in immigrants is an investment in Ontario's economic prosperity," Colle said. "The sooner newcomers put their skills and talent to work, the sooner Ontario benefits."