In the Field Newsletter Volume 136



Photo of Debbie Douglas

In Response

They lined up at the microphones placed around the room just for this purpose. The applause for the Minister had barely stopped at the end of his remarks before the first question came: “Minister, thank you for your remarks … It has been more than two years since your government promised a pathway to regularize the immigration status of these people. When can we expect a plan?” The room erupted in loud applause, clearly the question resonated with all those present.

Read the blog »



Francisco Rico-Martínez receives 2023 Guthrie Award

The Law Foundation of Ontario has recognized the late Francisco Rico-Martínez as a posthumous recipient of the 2023 Guthrie Award. It is the Foundation’s signature award to recognize exceptional access to justice champions. Before his passing in 2021, Francisco was the Co-Director of the FCJ Refugee Centre in Toronto.

Read more »



Welcome New OCASI Board Members

We are delighted to welcome new and re-elected Board members, elected at regional meetings and the OCASI Annual General Meeting on October 26, 2023. The Board will select the new Executive at the first Board meeting in December. Read more about new and re-elected Board members and view the full Board list.

Read more »

OCASI Celebrated 45 Years 

We were proud to honour six sector colleagues at our 45th anniversary Gala on October 25 in recognition of their leadership, dedication and many contributions to the immigrant and refugee-serving sector.
Thank you to all our friends, including members, partners and funders, who marked this joyful anniversary with us.

Read more »

OCASI fête ses 45 ans

Nous sommes fiers d'avoir honoré six collègues du secteur, lors de notre Gala du 45e Anniversaire qui a eu lieu le 25 octobre 2023. Ceci nous a permis de reconnaître et apprécier leur leadership, leur dévouement et leurs nombreuses contributions au secteur des services offerts aux immigrants et aux réfugiés.
Merci à tous nos amis, membres, partenaires et bailleurs de fonds qui ont marqué, avec nous, ce joyeux anniversaire.

En savoir plus »

Professional Development Conference

We hosted another well-attended and well-received Professional Development Conference featuring a tremendous line-up of inspiring speakers and presenters. 374 in-person participants came together on October 26 and 27 to listen, learn and connect with peers. 123 additional participants joined us online for virtual plenaries. Plenary recordings will be uploaded soon on the OCASI YouTube channel.

Conférence de perfectionnement professionnel

Nous avons organisé une autre conférence de perfectionnement professionnel qui a attiré beaucoup de participants et qui a été bien accueillie, avec un formidable éventail de conférenciers et de présentateurs inspirants. Les 26 et 27 octobre, 374 participants en personne se sont réunis pour écouter, apprendre et tisser des liens avec leurs pairs. 123 participants supplémentaires se sont joints à nous en ligne pour des plénières virtuelles. Les enregistrements de la plénière seront bientôt mis en ligne sur la chaîne YouTube de l’OCASI.

OCASI Statement: Speak out against racism and hate in Canada

OCASI calls on all orders of governments in Canada to speak out against all forms of hate and racism, and support all residents equitably, including their right to freedom of expression and peaceful protest.

Read the statement »

Participatory Policy-making with Refugee Claimants in the City of Toronto

Increasing numbers of refugee claimants in Toronto, Canada are revealing the strain between promises of inclusion and the limitations of current top-down policy approaches. In this research paper written for OCASI, Sharmarke Dubow explores what the City of Toronto can do to include refugee claimants in participatory policy making.

Read more »

Tenant Rights: N12 Eviction Notices

N12 eviction forms can be confusing for renters. Settlement.Org, in partnership with ACTO, answers some common questions on what a tenant should do if they get an N12 eviction notice from their landlord:

Read more »

Building a Blueprint: 4th Annual Conference 

Registration is open for the 4th annual conference, Building a Blueprint: Reimagining and strengthening non-status, refugee and immigrant survivor leadership to address gender-based violence (GBV) across Canada. Join OCASI and partners in Toronto on November 23 & 24, 2023. 

Learn more and register »

Online Workshop Series for (SBLROs) Small Black-led and Racialized Organizations - Registration is open!

Register for free Online Workshop Series starting November 2023 till February 2024. The series addresses Proposal Writing, Community Programming Development, Financial Management for SBLROs, HR/Volunteer Management, Governance 101, and  Afrocentric Governance. 

To receive the registration link, please fill in the SBLROs Form »

Register Today! OCASI Virtual Film Screening

We are hosting a free virtual film screening at this year’s Canadian Labour International Film Festival - #CLIFF2023! Films will be available for you to view online on Thursday November 23 at 2:30 pm (EST). On November 23rd login between 2:30 pm and 4:30 pm to secure access. You will have 24 hours to watch the films once you begin.

Read more and register »

New SSHRC Research Project

OCASI is partnering on “Liberating Migrant Labour?: International Mobility Programs in Settler Colonial Contexts”, a new 7-year research project funded by Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. Partners include scholars, representatives of national government agencies, international organizations, public interest groups, and transnational networks with a focus on four settler-colonial countries.

Read more »

Comment intégrer le marché du travail canadien : étapes essentielles

Découvrez les démarches clés pour réussir sur le marché du travail canadien. Découvrez comment la Société Économique de l'Ontario (SEO) peut aider les nouveaux arrivants  à chaque étape. Lisez notre article sur Etablissement.Org pour en savoir plus.

Unlock Your Agency's Potential with the OCASI Client Management System (OCMS)!

OCMS is a cloud-based data management system that streamlines client services and saves time for workers and clients alike. It is developed by and for the immigrant and refugee serving sector, and is known for its high quality and responsive service. To join our growing list of clients contact us at

Discover OCMS »



Réseau franco-ontarien pour l'inclusion 2ELGBTQIA+

Le projet Réseau franco-ontarien pour l’inclusion 2ELGBTQIA+, mené par FrancoQueer, vise à développer des solutions informées par la communauté francophone 2ELGBTQIA+ en Ontario. Du 24 oct jusqu’au 23 novembre, des consultations communautaires en ligne sont organisées avec différents groupes de nos communautés 2ELGBTQIA+. En participant, vous contribuez à faire entendre votre voix pour faire avancer l'inclusion dans les services offerts par nos divers organismes et institutions.

Inscrivez-vous ici! »

Anti-Black Racism in Education: OHRC Community Engagement Sessions

Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) is hosting community engagement sessions on Anti-Black Racism in Ontario’s publicly funded education system. You are invited to participate in and help drive positive change in our province. Sessions will be held in-person in six locations across Ontario during fall and winter 2023–24. There will also be two virtual provincewide sessions.

Read more and register for a session »

Unlocking Opportunities: Fostering Financial Well-being for Newcomers to Canada

On November 13, 12-1 pm (ET) Canadian Club Toronto hosts a free online panel on addressing the unique and complex barriers newcomers face when establishing a financial foundation in Canada. Featuring panelists

  • Margaret Adekunle - CEO & Founder, City Lending Centers
  • Tonie Chaltas - CEO, ACHĒV
  • Misha Esipov - CEO & Founder, Nova Credit
  • Jason Mullins - President and CEO, goeasy Ltd.

Register for the virtual panel »

Report Launch: State of Black & Indigenous Youth in Ontario

On November 15th, 12-2 (ET) the Laidlaw Foundation hosts a free panel discussion to launch its inaugural report "State of Black & Indigenous Youth in Ontario: An Examination of the Experiences and Impacts of Policing on Racialized Youth”

Reserve a spot »

How to use ONN’s new sector data for provincial advocacy

Register for a free webinar by Ontario Nonprofit Network to gain insights on how nonprofits can leverage sector data for provincial pre-budget consultations. Wed, Nov 29, 2023 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM EST.

Register for the webinar »

Why the Israel-Gaza conflict is so hard to talk about

Given the intensifying violence occurring in Palestine and Israel, learning from each other through respectful and nuanced conversation has become more important than ever. The podcast entitled "Why the Israel-Gaza Conflict is so hard to talk about" is but one example of how we can engage in productive discourse on such a polarizing topic. The podcast includes two women with intimate ties to the region.

Listen to the podcast »

Call for Session Proposals - Metropolis Canada Conference

Montréal, Québec, 13-15 March 2024 - The 26th Annual Metropolis Canada Conference, “Our Immigration System: The Way Forward” will focus on war, violence, human rights abuses, climate change, and how unstable economies continue to displace large numbers of people worldwide. Deadline to submit session proposals: November 22nd, 2023.

View the suggested themes and topics for session proposals »



Reports from Statistics Canada

  • "The Effect of Parents' Education and Income on the Educational Attainment of Childhood Immigrants” by Garnett Picot, Youjin Choi, et al., Statistics Canada, September 2023. This paper examines the impact of parental education on the likelihood of childhood immigrants completing postsecondary education.
    Read the paper »
  • Black-Owned Businesses in Canada, 2020
    This infographic presents information on Black-owned businesses in Canada in 2020.
    View the infographic »
  • Highlights on racialized Canadian new entrants to postsecondary education
    Racialized peoples represented almost one-third of Canadian new students in the five main post-secondary education qualifications.
    Read the report »

Advancing Health Equity Through Cancer Information and Support Services

A new report from Canadian Cancer Society on underserved communities that face barriers to accessing cancer information and support. The report examines gaps, barriers and challenges, and opportunities and tactics to address them.

Read the report »

Share your feedback on the report »



Employment and Social Development Canada

  • Enabling Accessibility Fund
    Application deadline is December 13, 2023, at 5:00 pm (ET) for projects that invest in programs that help remove barriers to accessibility and allow for persons with disabilities to take part in community activities, programs and services, as well as access employment. 
    Read more »
  • Youth Employment and Skills Strategy Program – Youth Focused Projects
    Application deadline is November 22, 2023, at 3:59 pm (ET) for projects that support young Canadians (aged 15 to 30) to develop the skills and gain the experience they need to find and keep quality jobs. Programming focus is on youth facing multiple barriers to employment, including youth with disabilities.
    Read more »

Canadian Heritage - Digital Citizen Contribution Program

Application deadline is November 28, 2023 (11:59 pm local time) for projects that support democracy and social inclusion in Canada by enhancing and/or supporting efforts to counter online disinformation and other online harms and threats.

Read more »

Skills Development Fund: Training Stream

Ontario Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development is accepting applications under this stream until November 17, 2023 at 11:59 p.m. EST. The SDF Training Stream offers funding to organizations for innovative projects that address challenges to hiring, training or retaining workers, including apprentices, to drive Ontario's economic growth.

Read more »