The Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC) presented awards to three individuals or organizations who have demonstrated, through their partnership with TRIEC, an outstanding commitment to championing immigrants and creating the conditions for immigrants to succeed in the workplace. November 26.

The Leadership in Immigrant Inclusion Awards, presented at the inaugural Immigrant Inclusion Summit, acknowledges key stakeholders for their work to further TRIEC’s mission to create the conditions for immigrants to succeed in and fully contribute to the GTA labour market.

The winners

Manulife

One of TRIEC’s earliest supporters, Manulife has been a longstanding partner of TRIEC and specifically TRIEC Mentoring Partnership for over a decade.

In 2017, Manulife approached TRIEC to think of ways they could support refugee newcomers through mentoring. As a result of Manulife’s support, TRIEC consulted with refugee mentees and front-line sector employees, and created enhanced resources for people mentoring someone from this population. We have also been able to recruit potential refugee mentees to TRIEC Mentoring Partnership.

This work has helped TRIEC better understand the unique challenges refugee newcomers with professional backgrounds face when trying to reconnect with their careers in Canada – and how mentoring can support them.

Hispanotech

Hispanotech is an immigrant-led professional association and a voice for Hispanic people in Canada’s technology sector. They help advance the career of Hispanic professionals, based on market demands and the latest industry trends. They have been an active member of TRIEC’s PINs network since 2012.

In 2015, Hispanotech started a mentoring program for their members with support from TRIEC Mentoring Partnership. The first cohort was very successful with over 60 members participating as mentors and mentees. They made over 90 matches in 2017, with over 50% of mentees finding meaningful employment after finishing the program.

However, the impact of the program hasn’t been limited to Hispanotech members alone. They have also collaborated with two other PINs associations in 2017, and four others in 2018, meaning members of other associations have benefited from this program. They have successfully delivered a program that positively impacts the careers of immigrant professionals and have embodied the core PINs objective of collaboration to increase their impact.

Alicia Lauzon

In her role as Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Specialist York Regional Police, Alicia Lauzon is responsible for aligning systems and policies to support human rights and diversity and creating an inclusive organizational culture. Alicia is a longtime champion of immigrant inclusion and she has collaborated with and advised TRIEC many times.

In 2017, Alicia, along with other employers, helped develop TRIEC’s Inclusive Workplace Competencies. Based on this model, Alicia co-designed and proposed an Inclusivity Training Framework for the York Regional Police to adopt. Alicia is also a proponent of a national inclusion strategy for Canadian police services that strives to deliver inclusive policing guided by human rights principles. At TRIEC, she has been an outstanding advisor and partner, most especially in the 2017-2018 year for her role in helping us develop the competencies.

What the winners had to say about their award:

“Manulife is very happy to accept this award in recognition of our work with TRIEC to support refugee newcomer professionals to access mentoring and help set their new lives in Canada off to a positive start. We are proud to have partnered with TRIEC since its early days and we look forward to seeing them build on their meaningful work in the future.”

Sandeep Tatla

Assistant Vice President, Global Head of Diversity & Inclusion, Manulife

“We are honoured to receive this award as a recognition of the vision of our founders and the commitment of our volunteers and directors, all of whom have selflessly contributed their time and effort over the last 10 years to help Hispanic Professionals integrate, succeed and give back.”

Carlos Paz-Soldan

President, Hispanotech

 “Being honoured with this award is more of a testament to TRIEC and the work the organization has done to inspire me in achieving inclusion in the workplace and beyond, in which everyone can bring their authentic self and experience a sense of belonging. Together we are more.”

Alicia Lauzon

Equity and Inclusion Specialist, York Regional Police