ADVOCATING FOR PERMANENCY OF THE RURAL AND NORTHERN IMMIGRATION PILOT TO ASSIST WITH LOCAL LABOUR SHORTAGE
North Bay, ON– The North Bay & Area Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) has assisted many businesses fill identified labour shortages. With the pilot set to end July 2024, the North Bay & District Chamber of Commerce (NBDCC) has advocated for permanent implementation or extension of the pilot and presented letters of support to the Honourable Anthony Rota, MP for Nipissing-Timiskaming.
“As one of the five communities in Northern Ontario partnering with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to implement the pilot, we are very pleased with the results so far and the momentum of the pilot is just getting started” said Donna Backer, President and CEO of NBDCC. “We have over 150 participating employers and have made over 300 community recommendations of newcomers to our catchment area” added Backer.
RNIP encourages economic growth of the North Bay and area workforce by hiring skilled foreign workers for positions that are going unfilled locally. It also addresses diminishing population growth and provide a space for newcomers to live, contribute and grow their families. Immigration and newcomer attraction continue to be strategic priorities for most rural and northern communities and this pilot has allowed such to make a mark on the map.
“This pilot has proven to successfully fill key roles in labour shortages faced by most communities, but this issue is not going away any time soon,” said Backer.
“We need to continue to market our smaller communities to newcomers, spread the benefits of rural and northern immigration to help communitiesrelieve labour shortage pressures, allow communities to grow and offer alternative living options for newcomers who are not interested in settling down in a bigger city”, added Backer.
“I am pleased to accept these letters of support and present them to Immigration Minister Marc Miller”, said MP Anthony Rota. “I am a strong supporter of RNIP and will continue to advocate the benefits this pilot has played in addressing the labour shortage needs of businesses in my riding”, added Rota.
North Bay and area have many opportunities for newcomers to make roots, live comfortably and contribute to society.
“The NBDCC continues to be the voice of business in the area, and we have heard first-hand the significant positive impacts this pilot has had in mitigating some skilled labour shortages felt by the business community across a range of sectors” said Ryan Drouin, Chair of the NBDCC Board of Directors.