Rules of Temporary Foreign Workers Get Overhaul

The newly announced amendments to the Canada’s temporary foreign worker program by the federal government are aimed at preventing any misuse of the program, though a business group in Alberta says that employers with legitimate workforce will also be suffering as a result.

Alberta director for the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, Richard Truscott, mentioned that “the changes that were announced today were entirely a step in the wrong direction.” Truscott explained that “the temporary foreign worker program has been a real godsend to small business. It really is unfortunate that the alleged misuse of the program by some big companies and big banks has put it into question for many other employers.” More than 70,000 workers are employed in the province of Alberta, in accordance to the temporary foreign workers, which is more than any other Canadian jurisdiction. These workers vary from the highly skilled employees, doing technical work in the oilsands, to the low-skilled workers that are making their livings at fast-food chains, gas stations and convenience stores.

An extraordinary large number of 213,516 immigrants got into Canada in 2012, in accordance to the temporary foreign worker program, which is more three times the number admitted a decade ago. However, the program recently encountered growing public criticism, when it was revealed that the Royal Bank of Canada had contracted with a supplier to provide IT assistance, resulting in the elimination of Canadian jobs while the new supplier brought in foreign workers to fill them.

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