On Friday, June 28, Glengarry-Prescott-Russell MP Francis Drouin, was at the Centre Culturel Le Chenail with Paula Assaly – Mayor of the Town of Hawkesbury, Brigitte Duguay Langlais – Eastern Ontario Project Officer for the Réseau de soutien à l’immigration francophone de l’Est de l’Ontario and Caroline Arcand – Executive Director of the Prescott & Russell Employment Services Centre to announce the details of two immigration pilot programs that will be taking place in Hawkesbury.

It had been previously announced that Hawkesbury had been selected to be one of the 14 Welcoming Francophone Communities in the country as part of Canada’s Action Plan for Official Languages. The community will be provided with $ 1.35 million in federal funding to help support and welcome francophone newcomers. This three-year project will bring together the community to welcome francophone immigrants to Hawkesbury.

Additionally, the Prescott & Russell Employment Services Centre has been selected as one of the 22 organizations to participate in the visible minority newcomer women pilot program. This two-year pilot program is designed to develop and test innovative approaches to enable more visible newcomer women to find a job and succeed at work and support smaller organizations to increase their capacity to service visible minority newcomer women and enable them to overcome barriers to employment.

Community partners will work together on both pilot programs and assist newcomers establish themselves in Hawkesbury by helping them find housing, health care and a job. These pilot programs will play a substantial role in filling the labour shortage currently affecting Glengarry-Prescott-Russell.