In the Field Newsletter Volume 42


OCASI In the Field
Volume 42
Message from the Executive Director

Debbie DouglasExecutive Director's Message - December 2015

The image of our new Prime Minister, in shirtsleeves greeting the first Syrian refugees airlifted from Beirut to Pearson International airport in Toronto was splashed across various media platforms from coast to coast to coast in Canada and across the globe. Accompanied by Ontario's Premier and Toronto's Mayor, the Prime Minister made a speech rich with the language of diversity and inclusion. The consensus is that his remarks captured the spirit of generosity that we've seen and heard expressed by so many residents here in Ontario and across the country.

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OCASI Member Feature


DevelopU logoDevelopU, Job Skills' newly established Division, has been created to meet individual and group learning needs, through personal and professional development opportunities not currently offered through funded programs and services.

For information on how DevelopU can help our community grow… visit

OCASI Happenings

New Website: Assisting Syrian Refugees

OCASI has launched Welcome Ontario, a new website to help refugee sponsors and others assisting refugees to find settlement and other services and activities for refugees.

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New OCASI Board of Directors

OCASI is delighted to announce the election of Ibrahim Absiye as President. Ibrahim is the Executive Director of CultureLink. The OCASI Board has elected a new Executive. The new OCASI Board of Directors was elected at the AGM in November 2015.

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OCASI Condemns Attacks on Muslims

OCASI is concerned by escalating expressions of Islamaphobia, racism and xenophobia targeting Muslims, Arabs and South Asians.

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OCASI Training: AODA Requirements

As of January 2016 all employees and volunteers must receive specific training to meet requirements of the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA). OCASI Training will help you become compliant.

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Sector Happenings

Rainbow Health Ontario 2016 Conference

Registration is now open for the Rainbow Health Ontario 2016 Conference, the only conference in Canada focused on the health and wellness of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer (LGBTQ) communities. Date: March 9th to 11th, 2016 at the Convention Centre in London, Ontario.

Click here for more information and to register

CCR Upcoming Webinars

Canadian Council for Refugees (CCR) is offering a two-part webinar exploring the intersection of immigration policy and violence against women, including practical implications for newcomer women.
Part 1 - January 20, 2016 - 2pm;
Part 2 - January 27, 2016 - 2pm.

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Expedited legal aid - Syrian refugee claimants

Effective immediately, Syrian claimants who apply for Refugee Protection Division (RPD) coverage will be issued a 10-hour expedite legal aid certificate from Legal Aid Ontario. Coverage is for preparation and filing of Basis of Claim and other documents for the IRB's expedited process for Syrian refugee claimants.

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Steps to Justice - CASSA

Council of Agencies Serving South Asians (CASSA) has developed public legal education tools on changes to the immigration and refugee system in English and in five South Asian languages. Steps to Justice is a Connecting Communities project funded by Law Foundation of Ontario.

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