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Atlantic Mayors’ Congress to host immigration conference in Spring

(Thursday, January 27/05) - The Atlantic Mayors’ Congress will host an immigration conference at Pier 21 in Halifax on May 15 - 17 in an effort to find ways for communities across Atlantic Canada to together to make the region more welcoming to immigrants.

"Atlantic Canada clearly lags well behind the rest of Canada when it comes to immigration," said Halifax Regional Municipality Mayor Peter Kelly, chair of the Atlantic Mayors’ Congress. "Although the federal and provincial governments have lead responsibility for immigration, I strongly believe there is a role communities can play in terms of attracting, welcoming, integrating and retaining newcomers to our region."

"I applaud the Province of Nova Scotia’s efforts in making immigration a priority and the Premier’s appointment yesterday of the Honourable Rodney MacDonald as provincial Immigration Minister," added Mayor Kelly. "It is only through better information and a collective commitment from government and interested organizations that we will be able to improve Atlantic Canada’s immigration record."

The conference will provide a forum for immigrants, settlement associations, universities, government policy makers, non-government organizations, researchers, businesses and employers in Atlantic Canada to explore best practices and discuss the possibility of adapting these practices regionally.

At the end of the conference, a ‘tool kit’ will be developed and distributed to conference participants suggesting ways communities can be more attractive and welcoming to newcomers.

Conference organizers are in the process of identifying potential keynote speakers, guest speakers and panellists. The agenda will also feature vignettes during which newcomers will tell their stories of challenge in the immigration and settlement process.

Many regions of Atlantic Canada have experienced significant population declines due to low birth rates, an aging population and out-migration. This population decline has serious implications for the economic future of the region, including lower rates of consumption and productivity, as well as a shrinking labour force and skill shortages.

Atlantic Canada receives less than 2 per cent of all immigrants to Canada - and almost 50 per cent of those immigrants eventually choose to move to other parts of Canada.

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John O’Brien
Corporate Communications Officer




Above content last modified Thursday, November 02, 2023 at 11:40am.