Earlier this year Immigration Minister Jason Kenney put into effect a new set of regulations to the Live-in Caregiver program which have made it near on impossible for ordinary Canadian families to hire suitable childcare or in-home care for adults.
The Live-in Caregiver Program was originally established to aid the lack of available carers in Canada. It is an immigration program, and currently the only one in the world, which allows the caregiver to obtain permanent residence on the commencement of two full years employment in Canada.
The new regulations have now made it compulsory that any family who chooses to hire an overseas caregiver must pay all the costs that may be incurred by either the family or the caregiver.
Hiring families are being asked to cover all recruitment fees, including the price of the caregiver’s flight(s) to Canada, in regards to a placement which they have no real idea will be successful or not, nor if the caregiver will even work for them at all. Worse case scenario; the caregiver agrees to work for the family, they pay for her to come to Canada, and she terminates the employment on her arrival. The caregiver then has four guaranteed years in Canada with which to find a new employer, usually a family who have less children or whom are situated in a more attractive location, and work for two years in an employment of her choosing. The family who sponsored her to come to Canada however will have lost several thousand dollars and still have no childcare, which in turn affects the ability of one parent to remain in employment.
As the mother of two children I have previously hired two overseas caregivers, and am in the process of hiring my third. Making the choice to hire someone you have never met has always been risky, and whilst we were lucky to find our first nanny, our second was a disaster who we eventually had to let go of early.
In this instance what we lost was the time and effort we had invested, including the fee we had paid to a recruitment agency as we were unable to wait another 8 months for a replacement nanny.
As we proceed with this third nanny we are extremely worried about the potential loss of money we will suffer, and how this will affect our ability to make other childcare arrangements, should she too not work out.
At a time when childcare is so difficult to come by; daycare not available or being too expensive for most, and not an option for parents working shift work, not to mention the local nanny market having become almost non-existent since the new regulations made local placements so much more preferable, it is truly amazing to me that Minister Kenney and the Conservative party would put Canadian families in such a position.
You have definitely lost my vote after voting conservative all my life.