OTTAWA: Visible minority newcomer women integrating into Canadian society can face many barriers to employment. Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, on Wednesday announced the launch of a 3-year Visible Minority Newcomer Women Pilot.
The goal of the pilot is to improve the employment and career advancement of visible minority newcomer women in Canada by addressing the barriers they may face – gender- and race-based discrimination, precarious or low income employment, lack of affordable childcare and weak social supports.
As part of the pilot, IRCC is launching an expression of interest process for new service providers that are not currently funded by the department. IRCC will provide funding of up to $7 million for new, innovative programs and services to support visible minority women in accessing the labour market and to build capacity in smaller organizations that serve or are led by visible minority women.
IRCC will also amend existing contribution agreements of select service provider organizations (SPOs) across Canada with funding of up to $5 million. This additional funding will increase SPOs’ capacity and expand their existing employment services to address the needs of visible minority newcomer women.
Finally, IRCC will work with the Social Research and Demonstration Corporation to develop a program design and measurement framework to quantify the effectiveness of specific employment interventions and program designs, learning what methods work best to support visible minority newcomer women.
Ahmed Hussen said: “Employment is key to the successful integration of newcomers. Having a job isn’t just about making an economic contribution to Canada, it’s also about providing a sense of dignity and belonging. Newcomers—especially visible minority women—often face multiple barriers to employment including discrimination and lack of affordable childcare. I’m proud that my Department has developed this exciting pilot that will offer direct support and services to these newcomer women as they get ready for the Canadian workforce, look for jobs and develop their careers.”
“When Canada’s women succeed, Canada succeeds. This investment will support racialized newcomer women to participate in our economy and grow our middle class. We are counting on these women to share their talents and help fill critical labour shortages from coast to coast to coast.”
– The Honourable Maryam Monsef, Minister of Status of Women
• Visible minority newcomer women have the lowest median annual income of all newcomer groups at $26,624, compared to non-visible minority newcomer women ($30,074), visible minority newcomer men ($35,574), and non-visible minority newcomer men ($42,591).
• Visible minority newcomer women are more likely to be unemployed. The unemployment rate of visible minority newcomer women (9.7%) is higher than that of visible minority (8.5%) and non-visible minority (6.4%) newcomer men, based on the 2016 Census.
• Organizations interested in the EOI process are encouraged to review the Funding Guidelines available online and submit their letter of interest by December 19, 2018.