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Manitoba to recruit nurses

in the Philippines

Minister of Labour and Immigration Jon Reyes joins the delegation. He is asking the Filipino community to share the news with family and friends in the Philippines

A Manitoba delegation is heading to the Philippines on February 17 on a recruitment drive to bring hundreds of qualified internationally educated nurses (IENs) and other health-care providers to move and work here.

The mission includes recruitment efforts in three cities – Manila, Cebu, and Iloilo – between February 21 and 25. Filipino applicants will be pre-screened to meet specific requirements, with a specific focus on IENs who have worked for at least two years in acute hospital or long-term care, and who have completed an internationally recognized English language test.

Manitoba health-care employers are expected to participate during the interview process with the aim of providing conditional offers of employment based on qualifications. Additional immigration support and facilitation will be provided by Manitoba immigration pathway officers, to help guide and assist the immigration and settlement process.

Fe Ryder, now retired, was one of the first five nurses who settled in Winnipeg in 1959. They worked at the Misericordia Hospital and were among the first Filipinos to arrive in the province. Photo published in Pilipino Express in 2016. Courtesy of the Ryder family.

With more than 230,000 immigrants choosing Manitoba as their new home over the last two decades, and high numbers of Filipino immigrants settling in communities across Manitoba, the province is well positioned to attract internationally educated health-care providers from the Philippines.

Minister of Labour and Immigration, Jon Reyes will also participate in the mission.

“I’m very proud to be a member of Manitoba’s large and dynamic Filipino community, and long history of recruiting health-care providers from the Philippines. I look forward to sharing the many virtues and opportunities that our province has to offer, along with promoting the already thriving Filipino community here in Manitoba,” said Reyes.

Temporary Foreign Workers

In an e-mail dated January 29, 2023, Pilipino Express was informed by a Manitoba government spokesperson that the IENs who are recruited will be arriving as temporary foreign workers with Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program’s supported work permits.

According to the spokesperson, “This will allow the IENs to enter the workforce and become established in Manitoba while their permanent resident applications are in process with the Department of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). The processing of permanent resident applications is the responsibility of IRCC. Current processing times, as of January 27, 2023, indicate a timeframe of 21 months based on the submission of a complete application.

The IENs will be able to bring their eligible dependents with them to Canada. IENs’ spouses may be eligible to apply for open work permits, and unmarried children under the age of 22 will be able to attend schools in Manitoba.”

“We are asking for the community’s help in sharing news of this opportunity with friends and family living in the Philippines, as well as in sharing the many things that they love about living here,” added Minister Reyes.

The Manitoba government has developed a support and mentorship package for eligible nurses. The package includes support for travel, immigration costs, credentialing, and buddied mentorship.

“We know that Manitoba is an incredible place to live, work and build a future,” said Premier Stefanson. “Our close ties to the Philippines and the thriving local Filipino community are natural selling points. This mission is an important step to highlight all that we have to offer, to attract new talent and add capacity, and contribute to our health-care workforce of the future.”

Deb Elias, chief executive officer and registrar of the College of Registered Nurses of Manitoba said the college, “will be providing resources and information to applicants and recruiters while seeking further improvements to ensure qualified applicants get to work as quickly as possible.”

Manitoba previously announced support for IENs living in Manitoba, including clinical competency assessments, bridge training, living allowance, transportation and childcare, as well as access to caseworkers to help navigate the licensing process.

Last August, the Manitoba government was the first province in Canada to remove its requirement that internationally educated nurses already licenced in other jurisdictions be subject to further testing if they are trying to be accredited in Manitoba. To date, 23 nurses have joined Manitoba’s health-care system as a result.

For more information about the recruitment mission and the Manitoba government’s efforts to recruit nurses from the Philippines, visit: