Recruitment, inclusion and retention of skilled labourers and immigrants
As the existing Canadian workforce ages and population shifts occur over the next 20 years, a significant percentage of new entrants to the workforce will come as a result of immigration. The majority of newcomers tend to settle in larger urban areas. In order to ensure Sault Ste. Marie has the workers it needs to meet future demands, a number of strategies were initiated:
- In January 2009, the Corporation of the City of Sault Ste. Marie launched www.discoverthesault.ca, an immigration web portal funded by the Ontario Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration designed to assist recent and potential newcomers with finding vital information pertaining to Sault Ste. Marie.
- In September 2009, the City of Sault Ste. Marie, with the funding from Citizenship and Immigration Canada, formed the Local Immigration Partnership (LIP). LIP developed a community-based settlement and integration strategy for newcomers to the community. The immigration strategy, Creating a Welcoming Community, was approved by City Council in June 2010.
- New to the Sault, a program of the Sault Community Career Centre, is funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada and is a one-stop settlement service centre for newcomers to Canada living in Sault Ste. Marie and area. The program supports the successful integration of newcomers into the community.
The City's immigration web portal, www.discoverthesault.ca, began in the spring of 2007 as an idea that recognized the need and opportunity to coordinate, consolidate and capitalize on the wide range of information tools, resources and service/supports that are available and targeted to immigrants and newcomers. With project funding from the Ontario Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration, Discover the Sault was developed with the goal of showcasing all that Sault Ste. Marie has to offer and help individuals integrate into a new community
Since the launch of the web portal in January 2009, www.discoverthesault.ca has become a premiere site in Sault Ste. Marie for both newcomers to the community as well as locals. The portal is now used by businesses and organizations all over the community as a reference tool for their customers/clients. It is also being used in the classroom in local elementary and high schools familiarizing students with all that our city has to offer.
Discoverthesault.ca has had visits from over 90 countries/territories. In June 2009, Discover the Sault received the “Best Website Award” at the 2009 SSMARt Innovation Awards. In March 2010 Discover the Sault became available in five more languages (French, Hindi, Korean, Spanish and Chinese) made possible by Phase 2 funding from MCI.