Ontario Chamber of Commerce

Ontario Chamber of Commerce

November 06, 2007 07:00 ET

Ontario Chamber Facilitates Integration of Immigrants With Global Experience

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 6, 2007) - The Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) is sponsoring seven local community projects designed to engage employers in efforts to integrate internationally trained professionals and trades people.

The OCC initiative, entitled Global Experience @ Work, involves over 80 community organizations in the province, including 9 local chambers of commerce and boards of trade.

"We're proud to help local chambers of commerce and boards of trade further invest in their communities," says Len Crispino, President & CEO of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce. "Since each one was conceived of by local community organizations, including business groups, employment agencies, training boards and colleges, and agencies serving immigrants, they've been designed to meet the specific needs of those regions."

Global Experience @ Work is part of an OCC strategy to better promote Ontario as a career, business and investment destination of choice, and to ensure that Ontario keeps pace with a competitive global economy by investing in human capital. It's been reported that by 2011 immigration will account for 100% of Canada's labour force growth, making it even more important that employers and immigrants connect.

"We're already facing crippling shortages of skilled workers in Ontario, a shortage that will only get worse as a result of a declining birthrate and more retiring workers," explains Crispino. "Global Experience @ Work provides the vital link to employers that is essential if we're to help immigrants maximize their employment potential and contributions to our economy."

Local projects will result in the following: direct placements, mentorships and internships for internationally trained workers in SMEs, diversity and cross-cultural training for employers, seminars and toolkits. Additional initiatives will focus on increasing the understanding immigrants have about employment integration, prior to their arrival in Ontario.

Global Experience @ Work proceeds with the support of the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration. Local projects were chosen after a detailed review process, from proposals submitted by local chambers of commerce and boards of trade. They will take place in Brampton, Hamilton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Markham, Ottawa, Richmond Hill, St. Catharines and Sudbury.

The OCC represents over 57,000 businesses through 160 local Chambers of Commerce and Boards of Trade, and has been Ontario's business advocate since 1911. Its advocacy and policy initiatives focus on six areas key to the economic well-being of the province: health; education; energy; finance & taxation; transportation & infrastructure; and border issues.

Contact Information

  • Ontario Chamber of Commerce
    Amy Terrill
    W: (416) 482-5222, ext. 241 or C: (416) 605-8205

    Richmond Hill Chamber of Commerce
    Leslie Walker
    (905) 884-1961

    Brampton Board of Trade
    Sheldon Leiba
    (905) 451-1122

    Ottawa Chamber of Commerce
    Gail P. Logan
    (613) 236-3631

    Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce
    Debbi Nicholson
    (705) 673-7133

    St Catharines Thorold Chamber of Commerce
    Walter Sendzik
    (905) 684-2361

    Hamilton Chamber of Commerce
    John Dolbec
    (905) 522-1151

    Greater Kitchener-Waterloo Chamber of Commerce
    Todd Letts
    (519) 576-5000