Kenney says, this proposal is in line with the government’s intention to focus its immigration system on economic growth, ensuring that all residents in Canada, citizens or immigrants, can maximize their contributions to this growth. When these workers know how their credentials match the needs of the Canadian labor market, they will be able to offer their complete skill set, as well as contribute more to the economy and faster at that.
Kenney adds, this proposal concerning the evaluation of foreign education credentials is just part of a series of changes that are expected to make Canada’s immigration policies more attuned to the country’s economic needs.
Foreign worker education credential evaluation is the latest suggested change in improving Canada’s immigration programs.
Before arrival, applicants will be able to compare their education credentials with those of Canada, and this will give them an idea how their educational attainment will matter to employers in Canada. This will also improve the process of screening out applicants who do not meet the required education qualifications, as well as control the problem of immigrants being unable to find Canadian employment that fits their occupational skills and expertise.
Assessment of an applicant’s education credentials prior to arrival, however, does not guarantee that the Federal Skilled Worker automatically gets employment that matches his or her education and experience. It also does not guarantee that a license will be issued for those who are working in regulated occupations, as the initial assessment will only serve to add depth to the evaluation for licensure purposes and for consideration of the province where they intend to work.
According to Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, Diane Finley, Canada highly values the contributions that foreign trained workers can make to the economy and labor market. Hence, the government is forging the necessary partnerships to improve recognition of international credentials so skilled immigrants can start working soon after they arrive.
The 2011 Government of Canada Progress Report on Foreign Credential Recognition Strengthening Canada’s Economy (http://www.credentials.ge.ca/fcro/progress-report2011.asp) emphasizes the achievements of three government agencies – Citizenship and Immigration Canada, Health Canada and Human Resources and Skills Development Canada – in terms of bringing foreign skilled workers to join the Canadian labor market.
Among the most important parts of the report are:
• The Association of Canadian Community Colleges’ expansion of the Canadian Immigration Integration Program (CIJP). CUP presently conducts on-demand orientation sessions in 25 countries worldwide;
• Creation of a unique assessment and bridging process for foreign educated and trained nurses as a way to help them satisfy the requirements of Canadian regulatory bodies for nurses all over the country;
• Launching of the International Qualifications Network website, where stakeholders can learn from each other through shared information and experiences in credential assessment;