Immigrant labour market integration

Labour Market Transfer Agreements summary report

Employment and skills training programming and services in Canada are supported and delivered by federal, provincial, and territorial governments. The federal government provides almost $3 billion annually to provinces and territories through four major bilateral transfer agreements to support training and employment programming for Canadians. The design and delivery of the programs and services funded under these agreements are the responsibility of provinces and territories. This includes programs and services for unemployed workers eligible for Employment Insurance (EI), individuals without recent or sustained labour market attachment (non-EI insured), low-skilled workers, employers, persons with disabilities, and older workers. The 2016 Federal Budget announced new investments for 2016-17 totaling an additional $175 million. This is the first step in a plan to boost support for skills and training through the transfer agreements. To further ensure that these agreements continue to be relevant, flexible, and responsive to new and emerging labour market needs and priorities, the federal, provincial, and territorial governments have collaboratively embarked on a process in the summer 2016 to gather stakeholder input on these important investments. SRDC summarizes the outcomes of the consultations related to the labour market agreements renewal in this report.

Start-end date: August 2016 - September 2016
Sponsor: Ministère du Travail, de l’Emploi et de la Solidarité sociale du Québec

HR Policies and Best Practices Toolkit for Restaurants

The BC Centre for Employment Excellence (CfEE) with its partner, MacLeod Silver HR Business Partners, developed an HR Policies and Best Practices Toolkit for Restaurants Canada's 30,000+ members. The toolkit produced supports the objectives of Restaurants Canada to provide its member restaurants with tools on how to recruit and retain employees, particularly those from underrepresented groups such as people with disabilities, aboriginals, new immigrants, and youth. The ultimate aim of this project is to produce an accessible and practical set of tools and resources to enable small- and medium-sized restaurants to achieve the workforce benefits of being more inclusive employers.

Start-end date: November 2015 - March 2016
Sponsor: Restaurants Canada

Women Gaining Ground Research Study

SRDC was engaged by the United Way of Greater Toronto to inform the further development of their Career Navigator program to better meet the needs of young women facing multiple barriers to employment, by gaining a deeper understanding of the challenges and service/support needs of this group. The study includes a systematic literature and evidence review, and interviews and focus groups to identify and understand: the main barriers (environmental/external and personal) that young women facing multiple barriers are experiencing while transitioning into the labour market; evidence-informed and promising approaches for serving young women with multiple barriers; how the current Career Navigator program is addressing barriers and where there might be gaps; and how adjustments to program design/delivery can be implemented in a way that works for both jobseekers and employers.

Start-end date: September 2015 - January 2016
Sponsor: United Way of Greater Toronto

Research – Settlement and Integration of Newcomers

This research contributes to the Government of Alberta’s process of developing a future-focused, innovative, and high-impact approach for newcomers, communities, and the economy through a three-fold approach: a review of promising practices related to immigrant settlement and integration; a scan of delivery models for settlement services in Canada, the U.K., New Zealand, Australia, and Denmark; and identification of policy drivers and key players in the field of settlement and integration in the province of Alberta.

Start-end date: June 2015 - August 2015
Sponsor: Alberta Ministry of Jobs, Skills, Training and Labour

BC Labour Market Attachment Evaluation Framework for ITWs

SRDC constructed an evaluation framework for labour market attachment projects for internationally-trained workers (ITWs) in British Columbia. The work supports a future evaluation to measure success in projects that the BC Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training is investing in, as a new area of the Foreign Qualifications Recognition (FQR) Pathway. SRDC developed an evaluation framework and data collection templates, identified software/system requirements, defined and validated indicators of outcomes, and developed and tested the data collection framework.

Start-end date: March 2015 - June 2015
Sponsor: British Columbia Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training

NextStep

NextStep is a multi-dimensional mentorship intervention designed to help highly educated, trained, and unemployed British Columbians better integrate into BC’s labour market. These individuals have been referred to by some researchers as "Poorly Integrated New Entrants" (PINEs). The YWCA Metro Vancouver is responsible for the development and implementation of NextStep. The intervention includes different types of mentorship programs to support better career development opportunities. The BC Centre for Employment Excellence (Centre), commissioned by the YWCA, is conducting the research and evaluation.

Start-end date: January 2015 - November 2017
Sponsor: YWCA Metro Vancouver

International students immigration in Francophone minority communities (FMCs) in Canada

Immigration is one of the proposed solutions to promote demographic growth, economic health, and vitality in FMCs. Amidst the diversity of the newcomers, integrating foreign French-speaking students into FMCs seems a promising avenue to ensure the viability and sustainability of FMCs. A series of three projects together aim to deepen our knowledge about separate but connected aspects of the immigration process for foreign French-speaking students to FMCs. The first project draws up a profile of the international student community in FMCs. The second identifies the recruitment strategies as well as the orientation, settling, integration, and retention services offered to foreign students in FMCs. And the third project studies the facilitators and issues connected with the immigration process for foreign students and looks at the promising services and programs that are already implemented at the FMC level or that could potentially reach the pilot project stage.

Start-end date: December 2014 - March 2016
Sponsor: Citizenship and Immigration Canada

Review of Manitoba Employment Assistance Service Providers

SRDC conducted an evidence-based analysis of Manitoba’s Employment Assistance Service (EAS) providers to inform future funding decisions of the Manitoba government intended to promote an effective and efficient service delivery network. SRDC’s analysis provides indications of where changes in EAS programming are needed so that the program can “do more of the things that help, and less of the things that do not.” The analysis addresses five key questions: To what extent is EAS programming aligned with provincial and federal policy objectives? To what extent is current programming responsive to the needs of key population groups and communities? To what extent are programs responsive to the changing dynamics of Manitoba’s labour market? How effective is current programming in achieving results for job seekers, employers, and communities? What is the relative value for money of the existing EAS program, and are there opportunities for service improvements?

Start-end date: April 2014 - September 2015
Sponsor: Manitoba Department of Jobs and the Economy

Vulnerable Immigrant Populations Program Evaluation

The evaluation of settlement and integration programs over the years highlighted that a subset of the immigrant population characterized by complex and multiple barriers such as mental health issues and trauma experienced greater challenges in settling and integrating into BC communities and the labour market. In response to this realization, the BC government launched the Vulnerable Immigration Populations Program (VIPP) in the fall of 2012. The uniqueness of the VIPP amongst immigrant settlement and integration programs resides in its focus on alleviating significant challenges and barriers experienced by this subset of the immigrant population using a client-centred approach. The program relies on a comprehensive and coordinated multi-agency/multi-sector team to address each client’s unique needs. The evaluation aims to gauge how well the services delivered match the program principles and expectations, examine the strengths and challenges that have arisen to date, and assess impacts of the program on clients, the broader community, and the BC settlement system at large. Part of this evaluation involves a comparison of the program model with similar Canadian programs and with previously implemented pilot programs upon which the VIPP model is based. Evaluation findings provide accurate and useful information for future programming targeting vulnerable immigration populations.

Start-end date: November 2013 - March 2015
Sponsor: British Columbia Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation

The Foundations Pilot Project

This project is a three-year initiative led by the Training Group at Douglas College, British Columbia. It tests: a) whether a skill assessment and upgrading program delivery model targeted specifically to meet the needs of low-skilled job seekers can be successfully implemented across several sites nationally, and b) what impacts the program may have on a variety of outcomes, such as participation in college-level training, employment, and labour market advancement. Approximately 500 job seekers were recruited, half of whom were randomly assigned to receive program services while the other half served as a control group. The study includes an evaluation framework and research design, as well as implementation, impact, and cost-benefit analyses.

Start-end date: July 2013 - June 2016
Sponsor: Training Group at Douglas College

Foreign Credential Recognition (FCR) Loans Pilot Project

Launched in 2012 by then Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, the FCR Loans Pilot Project targets internationally-trained workers who are unable to or experience difficulty in accessing traditional lending sources mainly through financial institutions. The project took place in 9 sites across Canada wherein 11 microloan program models were piloted. SRDC designed and implemented a research framework seeking to: (1) draw lessons learned from the diversity of models tested and the contexts in which they are tested; (2) determine whether the microloan programs have the desired effect and under what conditions; (3) conduct a costs analysis of the FCR Loans Pilot Project; and (4) explore whether the microloan models can be sustained in the longer term.

Start-end date: February 2012 - January 2015
Sponsor: Employment and Social Development Canada

Employees’ Perspectives on Intermittent Work Capacity: What Can Qualitative Research Tell Us in Ontario?

The purpose of this project was to better understand the experiences and needs of people with disabilities in Ontario who are able to work intermittently (i.e., not full-time). Focus groups, interviews, and personal stories were used to identify the conditions and supports that make it possible for people with disabilities to stay attached to the labour force.

Start-end date: July 2010 - March 2011
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Evaluation of the Immigrant Bundle of the BC Employment Program

A process evaluation of an employment program targeted for immigrants and refugees who are permanent residents and in receipt of income assistance to learn about effective practices and outcomes for the clients.

Start-end date: February 2010 - September 2010
Sponsor: B.C. Ministry of Advanced Education and Labour Market Development

Design of a Demonstration Project to Evaluate the Impact of Providing Labour Market Information to Internationally-trained Immigrants

A study assessing the feasibility of using random assignment designs to explore options to improve labour market outcomes for internationally-trained immigrants through different means of LMI delivery.

Start-end date: March 2009 - June 2009
Sponsor: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Identifying Promising Language Acquisition Interventions to Improve Labour Market Integration for Immigrants

A project to explore policy and program ideas to improve labour market outcomes for new immigrants that could be tested via demonstration projects.

Start-end date: January 2008 - March 2008
Sponsor: Human Resources and Social Development Canada

Identifying Language Training Interventions for Government-assisted Refugees and options for demonstration projects

Start-end date: January 2002 - March 2002
Sponsor: Citizenship and Immigration Canada (Strategic Research and Review)

Integration of Government-sponsored Refugees

Design and consultations around options for demonstration projects to improve labour market integration of government-assisted refugees.

Start-end date: January 2002 - March 2002
Sponsor: Citizenship and Immigration Canada

Statistical Profile of Government-assisted Refugees

A descriptive and analysis of selected outcomes of Government-assisted Refugees based on administrative landing data and tax records.

Start-end date: January 2001 - January 2002
Sponsor: Citizenship and Immigration Canada