M-39 passed unanimously in the House of Commons on November 2, 2016 with support from all parties.
Video of the Vote
The motion mandates that the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration be instructed to undertake a study on immigration to Atlantic Canada, to consider, among other things,
As I spent time in the communities of beautiful Fundy Royal this summer, I often heard of hardship finding enough employees in the tourism, transportation, and manufacturing industries. Community leaders also expressed concerns about the shrinking numbers in schools and the difficulties supporting local businesses.
The shrinking population in Atlantic Canada has been identified as the most pressing concern for the future of the region.
“Consider the situation now facing my home province, New Brunswick. In 2014, the province sustained more deaths than births for the first time since Statistics Canada began tracking the date in 1972. The region has the second-lowest fertility rate in Canada. In turn, the population is getting older; the Atlantic region has aged twice as fast as Alberta since 1971. Our median age is now eight years older than in Alberta.”Former New Brunswick Premier Frank McKennaGlobe and Mail (January 11, 2016)
The Government has acted already on this aspect of my motion, with the announcement on July 4, 2016 of the Atlantic Immigration Pilot as part of the Atlantic Growth Strategy. This initiative has already been well received by the Atlantic Provincial Premiers, the Atlantic Business Community, and Atlantic think tanks such as the Atlantic Provinces Economic Council.
The key to a successful Atlantic Canada job shortage immigration program is retention. Real success lies in retaining workers in the job for which they were recruited, and, over time, seeing them progress in the enterprise or in the local or provincial labour market.
Improved retention is essential if the pilot program is to achieve its objective of improving the labour market, and contributing to economic and population growth. That is why a significant focus of the pilot is testing innovative approaches to enhance retention, and that could be potentially replicated by other provinces and territories depending on results.
© 2019 Alaina Lockhart. All rights reserved.