News

Syndicate content
The Knowledge Hub for the Settlement Sector in Ontario
Updated: 1 year 2 weeks ago

Mayor Tory to Raise Rainbow Flag and Proclaim Pride Month in Toronto at Ceremony on Tuesday

Mon, 2016-05-30 14:10

Mayor John Tory will be joined by Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam (Ward 27 Toronto Centre-Rosedale) and other members of Council along with Pride Toronto representatives tomorrow as he raises the rainbow flag and officially proclaims June as Pride Month for the first time in Toronto. Previously, the City of Toronto had proclaimed Pride Week annually since 1991.

Mathieu Chantelois, Executive Director of Pride Toronto, and Aaron Glynwilliams, who co-chairs Pride Toronto’s board of directors, along with members of the public, will also participate in Tuesday’s ceremony at City Hall.

Date: Tuesday, May 31
Time: Noon
Location: Podium Roof, Toronto City Hall, 100 Queen St. W.

This year’s celebration will expand its footprint over 33 days as it grows as one of Toronto’s signature arts and cultural events and continues to strengthen social equity and empowerment. An internationally-recognized festival, Pride Month will showcase the activism, diversity, history and culture of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer and two-spirit (LGBTQ2S) communities and will culminate in one of the biggest annual parades in North America.

Following the flag raising, members of the public are invited to a special Pride Month kickoff barbecue hosted by Mayor Tory and Toronto City Council. The free barbecue will be held on the podium roof at City Hall.

Tax Filing Deadline for Self-Employed Ontarians is June 15

Mon, 2016-05-30 10:08

Here are some tips to get the most out of your tax return:

Income you must report

Most income is taxable including money earned from services such as lawn care, driving, cleaning, selling homemade goods or renting space out in your home.

The type of expenses you can claim

Reasonable expenses paid to earn business income can be used as a deduction to bring taxable income down. For example, if you conducted business out of your home, you may be able to deduct part of your home heating, home insurance, electricity, maintenance costs, cleaning materials, property taxes and mortgage interest.

You can also deduct all of your costs for expenses you paid specifically to earn a profit, such as your business supplies, office materials, printing, and advertising costs.

Get tax credits, benefits and incentives

Ontario offers tax credits that can help your business lower costs, hire/train workers and compete in the marketplace. You may be eligible for tax relief if you hired and trained apprentices in certain skilled trades and/or eligible university or college students enrolled in a recognized post-secondary education program.

Quick Facts

  • Nine out of 10 Ontarians filed their tax return last year before the deadline.
  • Failing to report all income may result in penalties.
  • For each business, a separate completed form T2125 should be filed with your tax return. All business expenses should be supported with a sales invoice or receipt.
  • In April 2016, Ontario partnered with Airbnb, a key sharing economy platform, to educate Ontarians who engage in home-sharing about their rights and responsibilities, and raise awareness of tax obligations.
Additional Resources

Improving Access to Canadian Health Care: The Role of Tax Policies

Thu, 2016-05-26 11:56

A new report by The Conference Board of Canada’s Canadian Alliance for Sustainable Health Care finds that Canadians earning over $250,000 claimed close to $8,300 in medical expenses, while those earning under $10,000 claimed on average $995.
Many Canadians who lack supplemental health coverage, such as low-income families, seniors, and the self-employed, still face significant financial burdens when accessing health services that are paid for out of pocket, such as dental care and prescription drugs. Out-of-pocket spending on health care is approximately $32 billion annually—an average of $910 per person.

Highlights

Out-of-pocket spending on health care amounts to approximately $32 billion annually.
Current tax measures provide greater benefits to high income earners.
Restructuring health-related tax credits to better assist low-income families could cost approximately $3.3 billion annually.
The report, Improving Access to Canadian Health Care: The Role of Tax Policies, examines usage of current and proposed health-related fiscal incentives. It finds that non-refundable tax credits (which reduce income tax owed), such as the Medical Expense Tax Credit, provide limited assistance to low-income households, compared to refundable tax credits (which can be used to obtain a tax refund from the government). However, refundable tax credits are more costly to the government.

Under the METC individuals can claim eligible medical expenses in excess of 3 per cent of their annual income or $2,208 (whichever is less) on their tax returns. This tax credit is most used by seniors, those earning $15,000–$45,000 annually, and by Canadians deriving income from pensions.

Since the METC does not apply from the first dollar spent, low-income Canadians must still face significant out-of-pocket expenses before filing a claim. While the tax return can be higher for a lower-income family, the out-of-pocket expenses still account for a much larger proportion of their annual income than for a higher-income family.

The report also analyzed the impact of a hypothetical refundable health tax credit applying from the first dollar spent. Although a refundable credit would likely be effective at improving access to health care among low-income households, it would be quite costly to government. The costs would amount to approximately $3.3 billion annually, about $1.6 billion more compared with the existing METC and refundable supplement.

As suggested by the Advisory Panel on Healthcare Innovation, the higher cost of a refundable health tax credit could be offset by taxing employer-provided supplemental health benefits. However, the Conference Board report finds that this could lead to a decrease in employer-provided coverage, especially among smaller firms.

Launched in 2011, CASHC is a program of research and dialogue, investigating various aspects of Canada’s health care challenge, including the financial, workplace, and institutional dimensions, in an effort to develop forward-looking qualitative and quantitative analysis and solutions to make the system sustainable.

Access the report.

2016 Lilian To Bursaries for Ashton College Tuition

Thu, 2016-05-26 11:49

The bursury is offered in memory of Lilian To, a crusader for immigrants and the longtime executive director and CEO of S.U.C.C.E.S.S – a multi-service community organization that provides assistance to new immigrants.

Submission Requirements

  • A 500-word essay detailing the applicant’s financial need, purpose, and specific goals for the future. In addition, the essay should also set out details of previous studies undertaken by the applicant, work experience, and involvement with community activities. All essays submitted should be well structured and free of errors. An external panel of four judges will evaluate the essays.
  • A reference letter from a previous instructor or employer within the past five years.
  • Resume
  • Completed application form (see below)

Types of Awards

  • Four full-time tuition bursaries (excluding books, application fee, and material fee) to a maximum value of $8,000 each. The award has no cash value.

Areas of Study

The 2016 Lilian To bursaries can be applied towards the tuition of any one of Ashton College’s programs or courses. Many of our programs are offered in online formats and so are available to students across Canada and those travelling abroad.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Must be a Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident at the time the application is submitted.
  • Must have arrived in Canada for the first time within the past five years.
  • Must register and begin a full-time program within one calendar year from the date awarded.
  • Cannot be deferred.
  • Awards are non-transferable.
  • Bursary student must adhere to existing academic policies of the College.
  • At the time of registration, application fee must be submitted along with completed application form.
  • Bursary student must meet all the admission requirements of the program.
  • Bursary cannot be applied retroactively: bursary cannot be applied to tuition already paid, or to programs in which the applicant is already registered.
  • Bursary applicant cannot be employed by, or related to employees of, Ashton College or Canadian Immigrant Magazine.

Apply now.

Skilled Trades Pre-Arrival Online Program

Thu, 2016-05-26 11:42

The skilled trades offered by employers in Ontario include:

Construction:

  • Carpenter
  • Plumber
  • Brick and stone mason

Industrial:

  • Machinist
  • Welder
  • Industrial mechanic millwright

Motive Power:

  • Automotive service technician
  • Auto body repairer
  • Truck and coach technician

Service:

  • Hairstylist
  • Chef/cook/baker
  • Child development practitioner

The program includes:

  • An Interactive Website
    • Free information for all users to help them better understand and transition to the Canadian workplace.
    • Access to exclusive content made available to registered participants. Registering is free.
  • Online Portal
    • Engaging, personalized, and useful tools to help with topics such as Job Search, Health and Safety, Resumes, and Canadian Workplace Culture.
    • Virtual one-on-one consultations with their employment experts who will provide information tailored to individual needs.
  • Support Services
    • Referral to an employment or settlement organization near where newcomers plan to settle in Ontario.
    • A customized experience to ensure newcomers are better prepared for working in Canada.

New Intake Hours, More Languages at LAO’s Refugee Law Office in Toronto

Thu, 2016-05-26 11:29

Here is the new schedule:

Day 8:30 a.m. to noon 1 to 4:30 p.m. Monday Intake for everyone* by appointment or walk-in Spanish language intake clinic by appointment or walk-in Tuesday Intake for everyone* by appointment or walk-in Dari/Farsi/Pashtu language intake clinic by appointment or walk-in Wednesday Intake for everyone* by appointment or walk-in No intake, except for emergency matters Thursday Intake for everyone* by appointment or walk-in No intake, except for emergency matters Friday Intake for everyone* by appointment or walk-in Dari/Farsi/Pashtu language intake clinic by appointment or walk-in

* The Refugee Law Office has daily language services available in English, French, Italian, Amharic, Tigrinya, Somali, and Afar.

To book an appointment call Legal Aid Ontario toll-free at 1-800-668-8258.

Refugees Work: A Humanitarian Investment that Yields Economic Dividends

Thu, 2016-05-26 10:51

Investing one euro in welcoming refugees can yield nearly two euros in economic benefits within five years.

That is a key finding of Open Political Economy Network (OPEN)’s new report – to their knowledge, the first comprehensive, international study of how refugees can contribute to advanced economies – which is co-published with Tent, a foundation whose mission is to help forcibly displaced people.

Amid the worst refugee crisis since the Second World War, developed countries are generally reluctant to admit many of the more than 22 million people forcibly displaced from their country. Yet welcoming refugees is not only a humanitarian and legal obligation, it is an investment that can yield substantial economic dividends.

When nearly a million Vietnamese “boat people” fled their country in the late 1970s and early 1980s and sought refuge elsewhere, they were typically seen as a burden and often turned away. Eventually, many were allowed to settle in the US and other countries. Most arrived speaking little or no English, with few assets or relevant job skills. Yet refugees from Vietnam now have a higher employment rate and greater average incomes than people born in the US, and they have played a key role in promoting trade and investment links with Vietnam.

This study sets out how refugees can contribute to advanced economies and what policies enable them to progress further and contribute most.

Access the study.

Education Initiative to Support Low-Income Individuals

Thu, 2016-05-26 10:41

As part of the province’s two-year, $1.5 million investment in Prosper Canada, the Financial Empowerment and Problem Solving (FEPS) program will now be offered to approximately 1,500 clients at the EBO Financial Education Centre in Ottawa and the Working Centre in Kitchener-Waterloo this year.

The FEPS program improves the financial security of people living on low incomes by providing individualized problem-solving, financial literacy workshops and tax clinics around tax season. Prosper Canada is a national charity working to expand economic opportunities for Canadians living in poverty. Since 2015, Prosper Canada has partnered with three local agencies in Toronto to deliver FEPS. The program is currently helping more than 5,000 clients in Toronto to better understand and manage their financial situation.

As announced in the 2016 Budget, the province is also investing $1 million annually over the next five years to partner with Prosper Canada to expand financial empowerment programs to more communities across Ontario.

Quick Facts

  • EBO Financial Education Centre and The Working Centre will each receive $150,000 this year, through the Ministry’s investment with Prosper Canada.
  • This additional funding is an expansion of the FEPS program offered in Toronto through West Neighbourhood House, Agincourt Community Services Association and Jane/Finch Community and Family Centre.
Additional Resources

Backgrounder on #WelcomeRefugees: Canada Continues to Resettle Syrian Refugees

Thu, 2016-05-26 10:38

The government’s commitment to resettling Syrian refugees to Canada is continuing in 2016. Processing of both government-supported and privately sponsored Syrian refugees has never stopped and refugees have continued to arrive during the past few weeks with more scheduled to arrive in the weeks and months ahead.

Privately sponsored refugees

For all privately sponsored Syrian applications submitted up to March 31, 2016, every effort will be made to finalize their processing by the end of 2016 or early 2017.

Here is how that will be accomplished.

Processing abroad

Starting the week of May 9, 2016, more than 40 additional dedicated staff are joining employees and partner organizations already working in visa offices in the Middle East to process these applications in May and June. Employees are located in different countries, with the bulk of the processing occurring in Beirut. These efforts will complement the ongoing work that staff have been doing throughout this process.

These efforts will also be supported by dozens of staff in Canada.

All immigration processing will be completed overseas. This will include full health and security screening in addition to an interview with a professional, experienced visa officer who will collect information to make a decision on applications and to facilitate visa issuance when the decision is positive.

Immigration medical examinations will include screening for communicable diseases such as tuberculosis. Security screening will include collecting biographical information and biometrics, such as fingerprints and digital photos, which will be checked against immigration, law enforcement and security databases.

Individuals who are accepted for resettlement to Canada will be issued a permanent resident visa and preparations will be made for their transportation to Canada via commercial flights, organized by the International Organization for Migration.

Syrian refugees who are accepted for resettlement are expected to arrive in Canada within three to six months of their interview. Cases with complications arising from a need for additional security or medical screening will take additional time for the visa officer to be satisfied that there are no security or medical concerns.

Private sponsors can check the status of their sponsorship application online and are generally advised 10 days in advance of the arrival their sponsored refugees.

Ontario Introduces Legislation to Encourage More Affordable Housing

Thu, 2016-05-26 10:35

Ontario has introduced the Promoting Affordable Housing Act, 2016, that would, if passed, help ensure that the people of Ontario have better access to affordable and adequate housing.

The changes would amend four provincial acts to help increase the supply of affordable housing across the province and modernize existing social housing by:

  • Allowing municipalities to implement inclusionary zoning, which mandates that affordable units be included in new residential projects in willing municipalities.
  • Making secondary suites in new homes less costly to build by exempting them from development charges. Secondary suites are a potential source of affordable rental housing and allow homeowners to earn some extra income from their property.
  • Giving local Service Managers more flexibility to administer and deliver social housing in their communities, which will help to reduce wait lists and make it easier for Ontarians to access a range of housing options.
  • Encouraging more inclusive communities and strengthening tenant rights through reforms that prevent unnecessary evictions from social housing and modernize how rental property standards are enforced.
  • Supporting better program design and decision-making by requiring Service Managers to conduct local enumeration to count people who are homeless in their communities.

Ontario announced its update to the Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy in March 2016. The update focuses on making housing programs more people-centred and co-ordinated, and provides municipalities with flexibility to meet local needs through tools like inclusionary zoning.


Quick Facts

  • Inclusionary zoning has been used extensively by communities around the world, including in the United Kingdom and in over 500 municipalities in the United States.
  • In the coming weeks, the province will consult with municipalities, developers and other interested parties to help develop a framework for inclusionary zoning in Ontario.
  • The proposed framework for inclusionary zoning would allow municipalities to implement measures like height and density, and to offer incentives such as reduced parking, waived or reduced fees and faster approval processes. This would help to address potential issues related to the economic profitability of development proposals.
  • The updated Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy reflects input the government received at 38 stakeholder meetings during summer 2015, and from 113 formal written submissions that reflect the housing needs of Ontarians across the province.
  • The revised strategy also reflects the recommendations made by the Expert Panel on Homelessness’ 2015 report and the recent report by the Mayor’s Task Force on Toronto Community Housing Corporation.
  • The 2016 Ontario Budget announced an investment of $178 million over three years to support the updated strategy.

Background Information

Additional Resources

Young and Temporary Foreign Workers Blitzes

Thu, 2016-05-26 10:27

Young workers and temporary foreign workers may be at greater risk of having their employment standards rights violated as they work more often in precarious employment.

Precarious employment refers to work that is seasonal, part-time or temporary. Such work is unlike a traditional employment relationship that involves a full-time, permanent arrangement with one employer.

These employees may also lack the ability, language skills or resources to understand their rights.

Blitz Focus

In both blitzes, ministry employment standards officers will visit workplaces in sectors such as construction, food services and retail trade.

The officers will check that employers are complying with requirements under the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA). Officers will focus on employment standards such as:

  • record-keeping
  • hours of work
  • overtime pay
  • vacation with pay
  • minimum wage
  • public holidays

Employment standards officers will take enforcement action, as appropriate, in response to any violations of the ESA.

The Ministry of Labour is committed to educating employers and employees, and ensuring those employees are treated fairly on the job. The goal is promote compliance so those engaged in precarious work receive their entitlements.

Additional Resources

Changes to Interim Federal Health Program Coverage in Dental Care

Thu, 2016-05-26 10:23

The Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP) dental coverage provides coverage for emergency care for dental conditions involving pain, infection or trauma. It is not intended to provide on-going regular or routine dental care. Services, post emergency exams and radiographs, are limited to emergency relief of pain or infection only. Routine care is not eligible. If the treating dentist considers additional treatment necessary, such as restorations and complicated extractions, a prior approval request must be submitted to Medavie Blue Cross before treatment begins. Please note that certain services such as root canals, prophylaxis, orthodontic treatment, etc., including any procedures that are the initial steps towards these services, are not covered under IFHP dental coverage.

Access the IFHP dental benefit grid on the Medavie Blue Cross website.

Ontario Re-introduces Legislation to Protect Students

Thu, 2016-05-26 10:14

If passed, the Protecting Students Act and subsequent regulations would improve the Ontario College of Teachers’ investigation and disciplinary processes, reduce the potential of conflict of interest and help protect children, students and teachers by:

  • Ensuring a teacher’s certificate is automatically revoked if he or she has been found guilty of sexual abuse or acts relating to child pornography
  • Requiring employers, including school boards, to inform the college when they have restricted a teacher’s duties or dismissed him or her for misconduct
  • Allowing the college to share information with the school board or employer if the subject of a complaint poses an immediate risk to a student or child
  • Requiring the college to publish all decisions from its discipline committee
  • Improving timelines for the investigation and consideration of complaints.

Quick Facts

  • The Ontario College of Teachers is an independent, regulatory body that is responsible for regulating the teaching profession in the province.
  • In June 2012, The Honourable Patrick J. LeSage released a report that contained 49 recommendations to modernize the Ontario College of Teachers’ investigation and discipline practices.
  • These recommendations were also relevant to the College of Early Childhood Educators, an independent, regulatory body that governs early childhood educators in the public interest.
  • In August 2015, amendments to the Early Childhood Educators Act came into force to address recommendations coming out of the LeSage Report.
Background Information

Additional Resources

Ontario Proposing To Ban Fees for Child Care Wait Lists

Thu, 2016-05-26 10:08

The proposed regulation is now available on the Ontario Regulatory website for public feedback. This consultation period will close on July 4, 2016.

Other key aspects of the proposed regulatory amendment are:

  • Requiring licensees to develop a public wait list policy that provides a clear explanation of how the licensee determines the order in which children on a wait list are offered admission.
  • Requiring the wait list status to be made available and in a manner that ensures confidentiality.
  • A proposed in-effect date of September 1, 2016.
Quick Facts

  • On May 16, 2016, Arthur Potts, MPP for Beaches – East York introduced a Private Member’s Bill in the Ontario legislature that would restrict licensees to charge non-refundable fees for child care wait lists.
  • In August 2015, the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014, was proclaimed to strengthen oversight of the province’s unlicensed child care sector and increase access to licensed child care options.
  • On May 9, 2016 new regulations under the Child Care and Early Years Act were filed with the Ontario registrar and will take effect on a range of dates beginning on July 1, 2016.
  • Since 2003–04, the government has doubled child care funding to more than $1 billion annually.
  • Ontario is investing $269 million over three years to support a wage increase for early childhood educators and other child care professionals in licensed child care settings.
  • Since 2003, the number of licensed child care spaces in Ontario has grown to nearly 351,000 – an increase of 87 per cent.
  • In April 2015, the province announced $120 million over three years in new funding dedicated to building safe, high-quality, licensed child care spaces in schools across the province.
  • So far, $90 million has been allocated, resulting in almost 3,200 new licensed child care spaces coming soon to communities across Ontario.
Additional Resources

Backgrounder: Gender Identity and Gender Expression

Thu, 2016-05-26 10:04

Gender identity is each person’s internal and individual experience of gender. It is their sense of being a woman, a man, both, neither, or anywhere along the gender spectrum. A person’s gender identity may be the same as or different from the gender typically associated with their sex assigned at birth. For some persons, their gender identity is different from the gender typically associated with their sex assigned at birth; this is often described as transgender or simply trans. Gender identity is fundamentally different from a person’s sexual orientation.

Gender expression is how a person publicly presents their gender. This can include behaviour and outward appearance such as dress, hair, make-up, body language and voice. A person’s chosen name and pronoun are also common ways of expressing gender.

There are a variety of individual experiences of gender and of gender expression. The terms “gender identity” and “gender expression” include a wide range of gender diversity.

Transgender people routinely experience discrimination, harassment and even violence because their gender identity or expression is different from those typically associated with their sex assigned at birth.  A survey conducted by Trans Pulse Project in 2010 showed that, out of the 500 transgender respondents in Ontario, 13% had been fired and 18% were refused employment based on their transgender status. Twenty percent of respondents had been physically or sexually assaulted, but not all of these assaults were reported to police.

Updates to the Canadian Human Rights Act

The Canadian Human Rights Act (CHRA) prohibits discrimination in federally-regulated employment and the provision of goods, services, facilities and accommodation on the grounds of race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, family status, disability and conviction for an offence for which a pardon has been granted or in respect of which a record suspension has been ordered. Adding “gender identity or expression” to the list of grounds would make it very clear that transgender and other gender diverse persons have protection in the law.

Updates to the Criminal Code

The Criminal Code prohibits hate propaganda against an “identifiable group,” which is currently defined to be a section of the public distinguished by colour, race, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, or mental or physical disability. Adding “gender identity or expression” would extend protection against hate propaganda to transgender and other gender diverse persons.

The Criminal Code also provides that a judge, when sentencing someone for having committed an offence, must consider any relevant aggravating circumstances, including if the offence was motivated by bias, prejudice or hate based on race, national or ethnic origin, language, colour, religion, sex, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation or “any other similar factor”. While this phrase is broad enough to include gender identity or expression, an amendment would confirm the protection for transgender and other gender diverse persons.

Introducing Legislation Against Discrimination Based on Gender Identity and Expression

Thu, 2016-05-26 10:00

Diversity and inclusion are among Canada’s greatest strengths; Canadians must feel safe in their identities, and free to be themselves. That is why the Government of Canada is updating the Canadian Human Rights Act and Criminal Code to include gender identity and gender expression.

On May 17, 2016, the International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada Jody Wilson-Raybould introduced legislation that will help ensure transgender and other gender-diverse people can live according to their gender identity.

The objectives of the Bill are to recognize and reduce the vulnerability of trans and other gender-diverse persons to discrimination, hate propaganda, and hate crimes, and to affirm their equal status in Canadian society.

Minister Wilson-Raybould introduced the legislation in the House of Commons, then joined members and advocates of the transgender community to announce the legislation.

If the legislation is passed, gender identity and gender expression will become prohibited grounds of discrimination under the Canadian Human Rights Act(CHRA). Hate propaganda offences in the Criminal Code will be expanded to protect identifiable groups who are targeted for their gender identity or expression. The Criminal Code will be amended to clarify that where someone commits a crime motivated by bias, prejudice or hate based on gender identity or gender expression, a judge must consider that as an aggravating factor in deciding what sentence to impose.

Quick Facts

  • Gender identity is each person’s internal and individual experience of gender. It is their sense of being a woman, a man, both, neither, or anywhere along the gender spectrum. Gender expression is how a person publicly presents their gender. This can include behaviour and outward appearance such as dress, hair, make-up, body language and voice.
  • Transgender persons face high levels of discrimination and crime. A survey conducted by Trans Pulse Project in 2010 showed that out of the 500 transgender respondents in Ontario, 13% had been fired and 18% were refused employment based on their transgender status. Twenty percent of respondents had been physically or sexually assaulted, but not all of these assaults were reported to police.

Related Products

New Educational Video Called ‘Know Your Rights’ from Ministry of Labour

Thu, 2016-05-26 09:55

The Ministry of Labour’s (MOL’s) Employment Standards Program has launched a new educational video entitled Know Your Rights. The video provides viewers with an overview of core employment standards and is designed to help employees and employers understand their rights and obligations under the Employment Standards Act, 2000.

Know Your Rights is available on the Ministry of Labour website as well as the ONgov YouTube channel.

Help to promote awareness of this new resource by sharing it with your clients and members.

If you have a question about employment standards and would like to speak to one of the Ministry of Labour’s experts, call the Employment Standards Information Centre at: 416-326-7160 (Greater Toronto Area) | 1-800-531-5551 (Toll-free) | 1-866-567-8893 (TTY for the hearing impaired). Information is available in multiple languages.

Mayor to Host Toronto Newcomer Day to Welcome and Celebrate New Torontonians

Fri, 2016-05-20 11:13

Councillor Joe Cressy (Ward 20 Trinity-Spadina), Toronto’s Newcomer Advocate, and JoAnne Doyle, Chief Operating and Strategy Officer, United Way Toronto and York Region, will be the masters of ceremonies for the formal program. Senator Ratna Omidvar will take part in the program and the Honourable John McCallum, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, will attend a special citizenship ceremony for 60 candidates at City Hall. 

Date: Tuesday, May 24 (rain or shine)

Times and locations:
11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. – information fair and family-friendly activities on Nathan Phillips
Square and in City Hall

12:30 to 1:30 p.m. – formal program including Proclamation of Newcomer Day, official
remarks and musical performances on Nathan Phillips Square stage

2:30 to 3:30 p.m. – citizenship ceremony in City Hall Council Chamber

Nathan Phillips Square and City Hall will be alive with an art exhibit, newcomer artist showcase, tours of City Hall, library bookmobile, speakers’ corner, roaming storytellers, gardening and other family-friendly activities. More than 45 community agencies and City divisions will be on hand to share information and resources available to help newcomers settle in Toronto.

Toronto Newcomer Day is sponsored by Tim Horton’s and Metroland Media. Everyone is welcome to take part in this free event. More information about Newcomer Day is available at toronto.ca/newcomer.

Education Initiative to Support Low-Income Individuals

Fri, 2016-05-20 11:02

As part of the province’s two-year, $1.5 million investment in Prosper Canada, the Financial Empowerment and Problem Solving (FEPS) program will now be offered to approximately 1,500 clients at the EBO Financial Education Centre in Ottawa and the Working Centre in Kitchener-Waterloo this year.

The FEPS program improves the financial security of people living on low incomes by providing individualized problem-solving, financial literacy workshops and tax clinics around tax season. Prosper Canada is a national charity working to expand economic opportunities for Canadians living in poverty. Since 2015, Prosper Canada has partnered with three local agencies in Toronto to deliver FEPS. The program is currently helping more than 5,000 clients in Toronto to better understand and manage their financial situation.As announced in the 2016 Budget, the province is also investing $1 million annually over the next five years to partner with Prosper Canada to expand financial empowerment programs to more communities across Ontario.Quick Facts
  • EBO Financial Education Centre and The Working Centre will each receive $150,000 this year, through the Ministry’s investment with Prosper Canada.
  • This additional funding is an expansion of the FEPS program offered in Toronto through West Neighbourhood House, Agincourt Community Services Association and Jane/Finch Community and Family Centre.
Additional Resources