Canada’s Forest Sector Pledges Support for the #CelebrateCitizenship Challenge

March 4, 2020

Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) and the Canadian Wood Council (CWC) have joined forces in support of the Institute for Canadian Citizenship (ICC) #CelebrateCitizenship Challenge  – encouraging business leaders and employers across Canada to provide employees with paid time off to attend their citizenship ceremonies - as a step towards a more open, diverse, and inclusive workplace and country.

“As more and more new Canadians settle in northern and rural communities, and as our sector builds its talent pipeline of the future, this effort is all about walking the talk on supporting diversity and inclusion,” said Derek Nighbor, President and CEO of FPAC.  “We plan to take our commitment a step further and will work with our team members to find opportunities for them to attend a citizenship ceremony this year.  We would encourage other national industry groups to consider doing the same,” he added.

“Canada’s wood construction culture is growing rapidly and we need the insights of new and talented Canadians to make this happen. CWC is proud to accept the #CelebrateCitizenship Challenge,” noted CWC’s President, Kevin McKinley.

“The Institute for Canadian Citizenship (ICC) launched the Celebrate Citizenship Challenge to challenge employers to give their employees paid time off for their citizenship ceremonies. This simple act is a concrete step any employer can take to make their workplaces and therefore their communities more inclusive. Polling shows that 8 in 10 Canadians agree with us that new citizens should not have to take unpaid time off work to join our Canadian family. We are proud to say that over 50 organizations across Canada have signed on to #CelebrateCitizenship so far and we’re thrilled to add FPAC to that list,” said Yasir Naqvi, CEO, Institute for Canadian Citizenship.

Any business, solo entrepreneur, or individual who supports the #CelebrateCitizenship Challenge can help contribute to a more inclusive society. Through sending new Canadians a clear message that they belong, FPAC and CWC recognize the importance of a citizenship ceremony time-off policy as we continue to expand our diverse and dedicated workforce.

For more information on the Institute for Canadian Citizenship’s #CelebrateCitizenship Challenge, visit

FPAC provides a voice for Canada’s wood, pulp, and paper producers nationally and internationally in government, trade, and environmental affairs. The $73.6-billion-a-year forest products industry represents 12 per cent of Canada’s manufacturing GDP and is one of Canada’s largest employers operating in over 600 communities, providing 230,000 direct jobs, and over 600,000 indirect jobs across the country.

For more information contact:

Kerry Patterson-Baker

Vice President, Communications

e :

t : 613-563-1441 ext. 314

Follow us on Twitter: @FPAC_APFC

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