Get information that is essential for all newcomers to Canada


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Ottawa is a proud multicultural city and reflects the rich cultures and traditions of both English and French Canada.

The city is bilingual and approximately 50 per cent of its residents speak English and 30 per cent speak French. The remaining 20 per cent speak other languages.


For information on driving in Ottawa and how to get a licence, see Driving in Ontario.


As you are in the process of choosing the best city in Canada for you, join us at the upcoming Settling in Canada Online Fair.  You’ll learn all about the careers and government funded training that is available by province so that you can make an informed choice on where to live.

What you can do at the fair

  • When you enter the fair you will be at the Plaza, from there you can check out the auditorium, exhibit halls and a lot more…
  • In the auditorium, you can watch some very informative webinars where you can learn everything from interview techniques to how to choose a settlement agency that is right for you.
  • The exhibit halls are where you find the booths, Each one of these is packed full of downloadable resources and other tools that will allow you to settle in Canada with great ease and comfort.

Remember to Register Now to avoid missing out on this great career opportunity.

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Police services

Ottawa is protected by the Ottawa Police Service.

Contact the police: When to call 9-1-1

Dialing 9-1-1 is only to be used in emergency situations. An emergency is any situation that requires immediate assistance from the police, the fire department or an ambulance.

If you know your situation is not a life-threatening emergency or a crime in progress, then call the other phone line at 613-230-6211.

To report theft, property damage, missing person or stolen vehicle, contact 613-236-1222 ext. 7300

For all other enquiries, contact 613-236-1222.

Places of worship

As a diverse city and a large immigrant population, all of the world’s major faiths are practiced in Ottawa. To find a place to worship or study your religion, see Cultural Associations/Organizations.

Pre-arrival settlement and employment services in Ontario

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