B.C. invests to expand immigrant settlement and employment services

The provincial government will invest $5.6 million to expand BC Settlement and Integration Services (BCSIS) to expand services by 45 per cent, officials announced Friday.

In addition to the provincial funding, Ottawa is also chipping in $2 million annually to the program, and a major beneficiary will be the initiative’s Career Path for Skilled Immigrants program - which will get an additional $2 million to help certain qualified immigrants to find jobs in professional fields through eight leading service providers within the province.

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“This continued investment demonstrates the importance of immigration in our province,” said Bruce Ralston, B.C.’s minister of jobs, trade and technology. “We’re clearly - we think, and I hope you’ll agree - moving in the right direction to ensure that newcomers will have the access to the services and programs that will help them thrive.”

The new funding will also provide 16,000 people in the BCSIS initiative with more support in areas such as language training, employment resources and immigration consultations.

The total investment the province is now making to immigrant settlement and skills training initiatives totals more than $11 million after Friday’s announcement, officials said.

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