Home Immigration B.C. reducing barriers for internationally educated workers in 29 professions, including engineers, paramedics, and vets

B.C. reducing barriers for internationally educated workers in 29 professions, including engineers, paramedics, and vets

by HR News Canada

British Columbia is making it easier for internationally educated professionals (IEPs) to have their credentials recognized in the province.

The International Credentials Recognition Act, set to take effect on July 1, 2024, aims to reduce barriers for skilled professionals who wish to work in their fields upon arriving in the province, it said in a press release.

“The Premier gave me the task to get the International Credentials Recognition Act across the finish line, and I’m happy to say we’ve done it,” said Ravi Parmar, Parliamentary Secretary for International Credentials. “For too long, skilled professionals from around the world have come to our province hoping for a better life, only to find roadblocks in their way. But now, with these regulations, we’re changing that. It means simpler, fairer rules so these professionals can start working in their fields faster, providing the services our communities need.”

Eliminating Canadian work experience

The act will involve significant changes, including eliminating the requirement for unnecessary Canadian work experience for experienced internationally trained professionals. This change aims to remove a major hurdle where individuals needed Canadian work experience to work in Canada but couldn’t gain this experience without already being employed in the country.

The new law will affect 29 professions, including engineers, social workers, veterinarians, paramedics, early childhood educators, teachers, biologists, land surveyors, and architects. (See full list below.)

Regulatory bodies for these professions will be required to reduce red tape and remove barriers to credential recognition.

Additionally, the act will enhance fairness by mandating similar fees for both international and domestic applicants and eliminating redundant English-language testing requirements. New data collection and reporting requirements will ensure accountability and transparency, with enforcement tools in place to ensure compliance.

Superintendent to be appointed

A superintendent of international credential recognition will be appointed to oversee the fair recognition of international credentials and address any systemic or procedural issues. The superintendent will have the authority to issue orders for compliance and impose administrative penalties if necessary.

The legislation has received positive feedback from various organizations. Shelly D’Mello, CEO of the Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria, praised the act, stating, “B.C. is leading the way in removing barriers for talented and skilled internationally experienced professionals. This legislation is a quadruple win: immigrants will have better opportunities to utilize their skills, employers will fill vacant positions and address labour shortages, regulatory bodies can enhance the quality and effectiveness of their sectors and, ultimately, the province’s economy and communities will thrive and prosper.”

The act is part of broader efforts by the B.C. government to create new pathways for healthcare workers and other professionals educated outside of Canada. These efforts include expanding programs and services to help internationally trained physicians, nurses, and allied health professionals integrate into the workforce more quickly.

For more information on the International Credentials Recognition Act, visit the B.C. government’s website on international credential recognition here.

The 29 professions
Registered Music Teacher
Professional Engineer
Professional Teaching Certificate Holder
Land Surveyor
Early Childhood Educator
Landscape Architect
Early Childhood Educator Assistant
Applied Science Technologist
Conditional Teaching Certificate Holder
Certified Technician
Social Worker
Veterinarian
Registered Clinical Social Worker
Lawyer
Professional Biologist
Architect
Applied Biology Technician
Notary Public
Registered Biology Technologist
Emergency Medical Assistant (including Paramedics)
Professional Geoscientist
Chartered Professional Accountant
Registered Professional Forester
Associate Real Estate Broker
Registered Forest Technologist
Managing Real Estate Broker
Professional Agrologist
Real Estate Representative
Technical Agrologist

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