One of the main issues facing by most newcomers in Canada is a fair access for jobs once they landed here. Many professions are regulated in Canada – meaning you need to be registered and get the license to practice your professions. However, the regulatory body does not process the program and the paperwork at the same speed as the influx of immigrants to the country. It has caused a lot of frustration among immigrants – on one hand the immigration department requires skilled, talented, experienced people within productive age to apply for the permanent residency status but on the other hand the country also applies a strong-controlled profession regulation – not to mention limited pool of organizations that can absorb these newcomers.
I’ve heard a lot of stories about wasting of talents: University professor from Beijing had to work as janitor in hospital, professionals from India working as taxi drivers, etc. Many professionals have to endure jobs that are not suitable to their set of talents and experience until they get their dream jobs. Of course some people are luckier than others. I thought something should be done or else we’re going to lose the competition for talents to other countries. Remember, we have a borderless world now. I think Global Experience Ontario is one of the answers to address this issue. (I heard about it during McGuinty’s campaign couple years ago.)
I quoted below what I read from the brochure:
Global Experience Toronto – An Access and Resource Centre for the Internationally Trained: Breaking Down Barriers, Supporting newcomers through licensure and registration in the regulated professions in Ontario.
In Ontario, professions are governed by regulatory bodies. They have the responsibility and obligation to uphold standards for practice in their professions. The regulators share many core principles, but each body has its own set of requirements.
Global Experience Ontario can help internationally trained and educated individuals find out how to qualify for professional practice in Ontario. This one-stop centre offers a range of services to internationally trained individuals. The centre also provides information and assistance to various agencies and regulatory bodies.
The centre provides information for people who intend to apply to a regulatory body to obtain licensure to work in their field. Knowledgeable staff can direct you toward the process for licensing and registration in Ontario.
English and French services are available in person, by telephone and online.
The regulated professions that will be served at this centre are:
- Professions: Architecture, Certified Engineering Technicians and Technology, Certified General Accounting, Certified Management Accounting, Chartered Accounting, Forestry, Land Surveying, Law (including Paralegal), Professional Engineering, Professional Geoscientists, Social Work and Social Service Work, Teaching, Veterinary Medicine
- Health Professions: Audiology and Speech Language Pathology, Chiropody and Podiatry, Chiropractic, Dental Hygiene, Dentistry, Dental Technology, Denturism, Dietetics, Massage Therapy, Medical Laboratory technology, Medical radiation Technology, Medicine, Midwifery, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Opticianry, Optometry, Pharmacy, Physiotherapy, Psychology, Respiration Therapy.
The Fair Access to Regulated Professional Act, 2006, gives internationally trained individuals a fair shot at success. The Act and the Centre will break down barriers and help newcomers work in their fields sooner.
- Contact information and referrals to the regulatory body in the appropriate field of expertise.
- Links to education and assessment programs to provide timely access to the best services available, as close to home as possible.
- Information about: standards for professional qualifications, licensing and registration processes, alternative professional avenues to complement skills, internships and mentorships.
- Information and referrals for retraining.
Last but not least… improve your English communication skills. You may have excellent credentials under your belt but if you can’t communicate them well in the local language it could likely be your most challenging hurdle to access your dream job.