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Copps, Murray and Ibbitson Among Speakers
at Atlantic Immigration Conference
(Tuesday, April 5, 2005) – The Atlantic Immigration Conference, hosted by the Atlantic Mayors’ Congress in May, will find ways for communities across Atlantic Canada to work together and learn from each other to make our region more attractive and welcoming to immigrants.
Keynote speakers include Sheila Copps, former deputy prime minister and political commentator, Glen Murray, former mayor of Winnipeg, and John Ibbitson, the Globe and Mail political columnist who sparked controversy last year with his article “Why Atlantic Canada Remains White and Poor.”
Other keynote speakers will include Diane Francis, National Post columnist and author of Immigration: The Economic Case and Lee Cohen, a Canadian lawyer who specializes in immigration and human rights.
Many regions of Atlantic Canada have been experiencing significant population declines due to low birth rates, an aging population and out-migration. “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,” says Mayor Peter Kelly, Chair of the Atlantic Mayors’ Congress. “It’s important for municipal councils to take up the immigration issue now, so we can learn how to best work together to encourage newcomers to come, and remain in Atlantic Canada.”
The Atlantic Immigration Conference will be held at Pier 21 in Halifax on May 15 - 17. Atlantic region mayors, councillors and municipal employees, as well as other individuals and organizations interested in immigration in Atlantic Canada will discuss the governance of immigration, support for immigrants, best practices, employment challenges and opportunities and a municipal agenda for immigration. Conference participants will also hear from several newcomers to Atlantic Canada who will share the stories of their experience with immigration.
At the end of the conference, a ‘tool kit’ will be developed and distributed to conference participants, suggesting ways communities around Atlantic Canada can better attract and retain newcomers.
Early registration fees for the conference, valid until April 8, are $295. After that, registration will be $345. Online registration is available at www.immigration2005.ca.
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Atlantic Immigration Conference