Provincial immigration office to open in Summerside
Province says office will be open by the end of 2019
Summerside will have its own provincial immigration office by the end of the year.
In a news release, the province said the new office will improve access to services for newcomers and employers in the region.
Currently there's only one immigration office on P.E.I., in Charlottetown, a government spokesperson said in an email.
The new office will be located at 268 Water St. and will have five employees.
A bilingual employer outreach and marketing officer.
A program officer to provide information to employers and newcomers about program eligibility.
A senior program officer to manage the office and maintain the integrity of immigration programs.
Two integrity officers to process files and deter fraud.
Minister of Economic Growth, Tourism and Culture Matthew MacKay said immigration plays an important role in the overall growth and success of P.E.I., in the release.
"Newcomers are working when they arrive and many are young adults with young families, which bring positive changes to our province," MacKay said. "An office of immigration in Summerside encourages more of this growth in Prince County."
MacKay said immigration has started to move outside of Charlottetown into other more rural areas of the province, and this centre will help those people.
"We're taking in immigrants every year that are not only staying in the city but they're coming into the rural areas," he said. "I think [this] will be a spot that we will have resources there to help navigate people that are coming through the immigration stream, not only for Summerside but to West Prince and all surrounding areas."
Summerside Mayor Basil Stewart said the city is excited to have the office opening this year.
"The collaboration between municipal and provincial governments to create this office means people will have easier access to services, and immigration in the Summerside area will be strengthened," Stewart said in the release.
And he said he hopes that it will have a big impact on the city.
"It will help hopefully attract more residents to our city and grow our population," said Stewart. "When you're growing the population that means more housing under construction and it means more jobs, and so it has a positive snowball effect," he said.
MacKay said they're going to see how the Summerside office functions before opening offices in any other rural parts of the province.