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Working in Kingston

Moving to a new country and starting a new job is both exciting and stressful. It's a good idea to do some research both before and after you arrive to determine if Kingston is the place for you.

For example, you should learn as much as you can about Kingston's geography and climate and Canada's business and political systems before you arrive. It's also helpful to be familiar with Canadian holidays, the cost of living, and the taxes and payroll deductions you can expect.

Canada is especially interested in attracting immigrants who can make a significant contribution to the Canadian economy. You should collect the official records of your education and work experience and find out where your skills and expertise are most needed. Be aware that your current job or profession may be called something different in Canada.

It's also important to find out if Canadian authorities accept your professional credentials or if you will be required to undergo additional training before entering the workforce (see Credential Evaluation). A licence or certification may be required for certain types of jobs. Regulatory bodies often have different requirements from province to province and within Ontario. If you do not meet the education or licensing requirements, there are programs and services available to help you qualify. Researching your occupation before you leave your country of origin will help you decide what steps to take after you have settled in Canada.

If you plan to work and stay temporarily in Canada, you need to apply for a Work Permit and a Temporary Resident Visa (if necessary) before coming to Canada. If you want to stay in Canada permanently, you must apply to immigrate under one of the permanent resident categories, such as the skilled worker category. Some individuals, who are in Canada temporarily either for school or for work, also have the option to apply for permanent resident status under the Canadian experience class category. After you arrive, you can speed your entry into the workforce by immediately applying for a Social Insurance Number (SIN), which is necessary to work in Canada.

The Canadian government has an online list of suggested pre- and post-arrival steps to prepare you for working in Canada and smooth the transition to a new employment experience. The online Government of Canada Job Bank will also help you decide if Kingston is where you want to live and work. See For More Information links below.

Other Topics for Working in Kingston

  • Labour Market Information — Information on the labour market in Kingston and how it compares with other communities in Ontario and Canada as a whole.
  • Employee Rights — Information on employee rights under Canadian and Ontario law. Topics include fair wage, hours of work, working conditions, and discrimination.
  • Employment Services, Resource Centres & Job Boards — Information on foreign education, training, work experience, and credential assessment and recognition in Canada. What you need to know to study and work in Canada.
  • Language Training — Information on language training options and needs in Kingston. Includes details on language assessment, LINC classes, English as a Second Language (ESL) and French as a Second Language (FSL) classes, and heritage language programs.
  • Regulated Professions & Recognized Trades — Information on regulated and non-regulated professions and occupations and recognized trades. What the difference is and what you need to know to work in one.
  • Self-Employment — Information on self-employment as an employment option in Canada and Kingston. Why you might want to work for yourself, what to expect and what programs, services, assistance, and opportunities are available.
  • Training & Apprenticeships — Information on training opportunities in Ontario. Includes details on apprenticeships, internships, and trades.
  • Volunteer Opportunities — Information on volunteering in Kingston. Why you might want to, what to expect and where to look for opportunities.

For More Information

Application to work in Canada — Work Permits
Government of Canada information about applying for a Work Permit to work temporarily in Canada. Includes a list of countries and territories whose citizens also need a Temporary Resident Visa and/or who need to provide biometric information. There is also a list and links to Canadian visa offices abroad.

Get a Work Permit
Government of Canada information about options for getting work permits for foreign workers. Includes links to information specific to live-in caregivers, business people, students, permanent workers (i.e. immigrate to Canada), and International Experience Canada applicants.

Government of Canada Job Bank
Overview about working in Canada. Includes links to information on government, wages, taxes, important documents, challenges, and rights as well as videos and guides. Also features a number of useful tools for researching the demand and outlook for different occupations in locations across Canada as well as listing existing job opportunities.

Ontario Immigration: Work Permits
How and when to obtain a work permit, information for international students who want to work, and the special provisions for certain fields.

Determine your eligibility — Work in Canada
Government of Canada information on who is eligible to work in Canada. Includes details on the different application processes and eligibility requirements for those applying from outside Canada, inside Canada, and entering Canada.

Welcome to Canada: What You Should Know
Information about what to expect during the first few weeks in Canada. In addition to information on Canadian laws and health care, it also includes how to find a place to live, get around your new city, work and go to school, and how to connect with your community and get help settling in Canada. The guide is available as a downloadable PDF or eBook as well as in print (hardcopy) upon request.

Job Bank — Pre- and Post-Arrival Steps
Lists for prospective newcomers who plan to work in Canada. One is a pre-arrival list of steps to take before leaving for Canada and the other is a post-arrival list for after arrival in Canada.

How to Find a Job in Canada. Common Problems and Effective Solutions
A practical guide to finding a job in Canada. Topics include preparing for a job search, survival jobs, the visible job market, the hidden job market, resume writing, effective interviewing, Internet resources, worker rights and provincial job markets. Second book in the Oxford University Press Canadian Newcomer Series.

You’re Hired…Now What? An Immigrant’s Guide to Success in the Canadian Workplace (Oxford University Press)
A 404-page comprehensive introduction to the culture and norms of the Canadian workplace. Topics include how to work well in Canada, projecting a professional image, telephone tips, business writing, office politics, networking, managing time, meetings and presentations. Third book in the Oxford University Press Canadian Newcomer Series.

Working in Canada Videos
Canadian government videos about working in Canada. Includes videos on occupations in the tourism sector and various occupations as described by workers. Also include videos of newcomer’s stories about coming to Canada and information about Canada. A partner site to the Government of Canada Job Bank website.

Opportunities Ontario: Foreign Workers
Work permit information for businesses wishing to recruit and hire foreign workers. Includes information and links on both the General Category (including a video) and the International Student With Job Offer streams for employers and those seeking nomination as a foreign worker. Also lists the process and documents required of both employer and employee, and how employees may extend their stay in Ontario.

See if you need a Labour Market Impact Assessment
Information on when an employer needs to obtain a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) to hire a foreign worker through the federal Temporary Foreign Worker Program. Includes a list of worker categories for those who need a work permit but not an LMIA.

Planning to work in Canada? An essential workbook for newcomers
Foreign Credentials Referral Office workbook/guide with information about living and working in Canada (listed under the “Credential recognition” subcategory). It includes information on languages, finding a job, work-related documents and education/academic credentials.

Improving your English and French
General background information about why improving you and your family’s English and French language skills both before and after arrival in Canada is so important for everyday living and work. Includes basic information on language classes, registering for taxpayer-funded language classes, proficiency tests and certificates.

Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA)
Sets out the rights and duties of workers, supervisors, employers and others for safe and healthy workplaces.

Learn to work safe
Training tools to help you learn how to work safely – several available in different languages.

Build ON
Prepare to work in the skilled trades in Ontario. To help you find a job, this site offers one-on-one consultations with a coach, videos and documents in English and French.

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