PEI

P.E.I. streamlines foreign-worker certification

The P.E.I. government announced Monday a new half-million-dollar program to streamline the accreditation process for dozens of regulated trades and professions including construction, dentistry and hairdressing.

The P.E.I. government announced Monday a new half-million-dollar program to streamline the accreditation process for dozens of regulated trades and professions including construction, dentistry and hairdressing.

The province hopes to make the province more attractive to immigrants by making it easier for foreign workers to apply their skills in the labour market.

The program will not include foreign-trained doctors, who face the most difficult time getting certified to work locally.

Innovation and Advanced Learning Minister Allen Roach said streamlining doctor certification would have to be done in co-operation with the College of Physicians and Surgeons, which he did not rule out.

The program does include paramedics, although there are currently no foreign-trained paramedics seeking employment on the Island.

It takes two years of training at a program like the one offered at Holland College in order for paramedics to become certified locally.

But for a paramedic trained outside Canada, there's no clear path that leads to certification.

Craig Mackie, executive director of the PEI Association for Newcomers, said that after the language barrier, getting proper recognition for training and experience is the biggest and most frustrating barrier standing in the way of immigrants looking for work.