How has the global COVID-19 pandemic impacted rural immigration? Restrictions on travel, closed borders and the fear of being infected with the COVID-19 coronavirus have put the brakes on immigration to Canada.  Newcomers were already much more likely to settle in large urban centres, but with the pandemic it has become even more challenging for rural communities to attract them.  At the same time, rural communities are continuing to struggle with labour market gaps caused by an aging population, youth out migration and a lack of newcomers to fill the jobs that are already vacant.

On March 25, 2021, Prof. Ryan Gibson and Louis Helps shared perspectives of rural immigration in a webinar organized by Renfrew Lanark Local Immigration Partnership and Pembroke Campus of Algonquin College. Building on the recently published Canadian Rural Revitalization’s Rural Insights on COVID19 Series, the presentation highlighted current rural immigration trends, how the pandemic has disrupted rural immigration initiatives, and the implications for building welcoming community strategies and activities in a post-pandemic landscape.

Resources shared through the webinar can be found below: