Ottawa missing chance to help all employees, not just migrants

Op-Ed in Globe and Mail by Bethany Hastie
17 January, 2017

An excellent op-ed on the timidity of reforms to the status of temporary migrant workers in Canada by Bethany Hastie.

“Following a House of Commons standing committee report on the Temporary Foreign Workers Program, published last September, the federal government announced a suite of potential future changes to the TFWP in December. The announcement focused on the immediate repeal of the “cumulative duration” limit for low-wage migrant workers (also known as the “four-in, four-out” rule), while also suggesting it would explore further changes in the coming months, such as issues around permanent residency for migrant workers.

However, absent from the announcement was any mention of one of the most concrete and meaningful recommendations made by the standing committee: to change the designation of work permits from an “employer-specific” permit to a sectoral permit.

Currently, work permits under the TFWP limit a migrant worker’s eligibility to work to one employer, one location and one job, as listed on their work permit. This means workers cannot change jobs, locations or employers without applying for a new work permit. The current permit system is deeply problematic, and has been consistently found to have a direct impact on the exploitation and abuse of migrant workers in Canada.”

To read the rest of the Op-Ed, please click here.

Share this: