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Advanced Education and Skills
March 19, 2013

The following statement was given today in the House of Assembly by the Honourable Joan Shea, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills:

Celebrating Diversity with Multiculturalism Week 2013

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to inform this Honourable House that March 18 to 24 is Multiculturalism Week in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Across the province, communities are joining in celebrations and activities to promote multiculturalism and cross-cultural understanding where the cultural diversity of all people is valued, supported and enhanced to collectively build a prosperous province.

When we launched our immigration strategy in 2007, the Provincial Government had a goal to promote the province internationally and help immigrants with settlement and integration.

Mr. Speaker, Newfoundland and Labrador is facing very real challenges related to our population and demographics in the coming years. In fact by 2020 we will need 70,000 skilled people to ensure we can take maximum advantage of the economic opportunities before us. Through our recently-announced Population Growth Strategy, we will build on the work of the Office of Immigration and Multiculturalism and keep attracting new Canadians as part of our plan to address these challenges.

Mr. Speaker, later this evening, multi-coloured lights surrounding Confederation Building will be turned on in recognition of Multiculturalism Week across Newfoundland and Labrador.

Cultural diversity is a strength, and by displaying lights, we show how diversity makes our communities more dynamic places to live. I invite all Newfoundlanders and Labradorians to join in the celebration and display multi-coloured lights outside their homes as symbols of diversity and multiculturalism.

Mr. Speaker, this tradition was inspired by the residents of Labrador City, who light a green light on their porches each year to symbolize their towns and homes welcoming newcomers.

Today, it celebrates the promise of a bright, prosperous, and vibrant future for all of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Thank you.

2013 03 19             2:00 p.m.

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