Hear first-hand the difference our employees are making.
Explore our stories
- Their experiences
- “In our words” – Stories from Indigenous employees
- It’s about ability, not disability – Stories from employees with a disability
Alain is a proud Haitian immigrant. His wife sponsored him after immigrating herself through our Federal Skilled Worker Program.
He joined us after going through law school and articling. At first he was processing immigration applications. Now, he’s a supervisor and feels grateful to be working on the same programs that allowed his family to come to Canada in the first place. It feels good to know he’s helping the next generation of immigrants create new possibilities, just like he did.
Holly is the busy single mom of a nature-loving 4-year old.
She loves the flexibility she has here. It helps her manage her family’s schedule and keep a healthy work-life balance. She’s able to work from home a few days, which helps simplify school pick-ups, drop-offs, and everything in between. It gives her more time to get her work done and plan the next meal, all in the comfort of her mom jeans!
Shima is a co-op student and first-time public servant. She chose us because of our mandate. She wanted to be a part of an organization that changes people’s lives.
She loves that she can apply what she’s learning at school in her job. We encourage her to innovate and be creative in her work with Human Resources. Her ideas to improve student recruitment have been recognized by her teammates and are often implemented. It’s nice to know her work is making a difference, already.
“In our words” – Stories from Indigenous employees
I was born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba. My mother is Cree, from Fox Lake First Nations, and my father is of Scandinavian/German descent. I have worked for the Government of Canada since March 2010, beginning my career with the federal government at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada. I later moved to IRCC and I consider myself to be super fortunate to have found employment at IRCC. I began my employment in Citizenship, and couldn’t believe I was getting a paycheque for working citizenship ceremonies and administering citizenship tests. The ceremonies brought tears to my eyes each and every time, just seeing the new citizens from all around the world, choosing Canada as their home and taking the oath of citizenship. As an Indigenous person, it is super important to me that newcomers feel welcome to Canada, and are educated about Indigenous history, including residential schools.
I am now working in Settlement and the best thing about working at IRCC is the support I have received from peers and management with regards to career development. I have had many training opportunities and coaching sessions which has lead me to where I am today and I hope to one day find myself in a leadership role. One of the things I want to accomplish is to bring a visible First Nations presence into IRCC as a positive role model so that other First Nations can see me in a high paced, influential position at IRCC. Also, because I am meeting with members of the Immigrant community, I want to represent Indigenous people in a positive way.
Boozhoo, Aanii, (Welcome, Hello in Ojibway)
My name is James and I am a First Nation Band member from Fort William Ojibway First Nation. I came over to Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada because I wanted to be with an organization that helps improves the quality of new Canadians lives. If you look back on the Canadian History, First Nations were the first people to greet the new visitors, show them the lay of the land, and to navigate their ways through the long cold winters.
I am currently helping develop policy for new Canadians on Indigenous Rights issues and I wanted to volunteer my time towards this amazing cause so that a bond can be formed between New Canadians and the First Nations people of Canada.
Miigwitch (Thank you)
I am proud of my heritage. I am from the “Wolastoqiyik Wahsipekuk” band. We are also knows as the Malecite of Viger Band. We are the 11th First Nation in Quebec. Canada is my country, my home.
Being at IRCC only for a little over two years – I honestly understand why so many people from other countries want to come to Canada. They want to live in peace, be contributing members to their communities, find meaningful work, provide and create new families as Canadians.
At IRCC, the goal is to help these people. I get it! I take pride in the sector that I work for. The Settlement and Integration Sector is crucial to the success of new comers. I value the work the sector does that makes so much of a difference to the lives we touch. I am First Nations and really proud of the work we do here at IRCC on behalf of so many people that want to make Canada their home.
Thank you, merci, Woliwon
I started my career at IRCC in 2017 right after graduating college. I have had many people that I work with at IRCC who are invested in my success as a public servant and have given me opportunities to apply myself and gain experience as a young professional. I now work in Corporate Security, which perfectly aligns with what I want to do with my career. I am passionate about the work that I do in playing a part in keeping IRCC employees safe.
Ever since I started at IRCC, I was able to be involved in lots of exciting initiatives outside of my work, such as the Indigenous Peoples Circle, an IRCC network of Indigenous employees and their allies. Being a part of the Indigenous Peoples Circle has allowed me to share my culture with others, and also further explore it in myself. I love that IRCC gives space for employees to participate in these types of activities, which teach skills that I use in my personal and professional life.
It’s about ability, not disability – Stories from employees with a disability
My name is Judith and I’ve been with IRCC for over 20 years. I first started as an officer in the field, then became a trainer and gradually developed management interest. I have been managing teams in the department for about 10 years now. I feel privileged to have been able to observe the reality of “disability” not only from the angle of an employee, but also from that of a manager.
My disability was identified in 2017, so I have also experienced IRCC without and with the barriers of disability. After the disability diagnosis, adjustments were important and challenging at times, but I’ve been able to adjust because of the support I received along the way. IRCC is my big professional family; I’ve been fortunate enough on several occasions to find myself in the path of caring, patient and non-judgmental colleagues. They made a real difference in the way obstacles were removed.
Flexibility, resilience and perseverance are important skills to have for employees living with a disability and for the managers supporting them. I currently see a commitment from the department to improve accessibility for persons with a disability and to improve equity and inclusion for all. This is very positive for the next generations of IRCC employees.
I live with spastic cerebral palsy and relapse and remitting multiple sclerosis. I started working for the operational services centre and then worked for the Refugee Operations Centre. I now work as an investigative analyst with the Employer Compliance Inspections Unit (ECIU) within the Case Management Branch.
In the ECIU, I’m able to be open about the disabilities that I live with and I continually feel seen, heard and supported. It’s wonderful to work for a department that recognizes what I can do, rather than what limits me. I couldn’t be more grateful.
My name is Cara and I have a neurobiological disability. I had been struggling to overcome it since the 2015 diagnosis. Work at my previous organization was a trigger for recurrent episodes of hospital stays. My managers didn’t understand enough to effectively accommodate my condition. But from the very day I started working for IRCC in March 2020—3 days before the pandemic lockdown—my reality changed drastically. IRCC is a very human-focused organization, with action and social support groups such as the Anti-Racism Taskforce, the Indigenous People’s Circle and the Persons with Disabilities Network, and an overall emphasis on diversity, equity and inclusion.
Plus, I was able to move up in my career, which had been languishing up to then, into a position that better matched my skills, experience, training and interest. I am meant to work in the social sciences and humanities field, and the people and files that I have had the absolute pleasure and honour to work with continually give me a sense of pride and positive responsibility. My team, branch and leadership are so compassionate, which I have come to learn is a hallmark of many groups in IRCC. Even if I get the occasional blip of challenge with my dynamic neurobiological condition here and there, I am accepted and valued, and work continues unhindered. I know that at IRCC, I am home.
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