Committee of House of Commons in Canada has suggested extensive proposals for making alternations to the provisional foreign worker program. The recommendations include smoother modes of upgrading to permanent residency and easier ways for companies to respond to job market requirements.
The other recommendations of the committee include removal of the law that binds overseas immigrant worker to a particular employer as this will result in a scenario of exploitation by the companies. Further, it is also suggested that companies that have a record of the suitable use of the program could be categorized into a Trusted Employer Program. This program will enable faster processing of their applications for job market impact assessments. The committee is also in favor of removal of a rule that drives out some workers out of Canada after four years.
John McCallum Minister of Immigration and MaryAnn Mihychuk Minister of Employment, Workforce Development, and Labor have responded to the committee’s recommendations by saying that they would give their response within the time-frame of 120 days as provided by the legislature. In the present scenario of the parliament that is dominated by the Liberal Party, it is anticipated that the major changes assured by the government will now be implemented, quoted the CIC News.
The committee observed that the application fee of $ 1,000 in Labor Market Impact Assessment group was adversely affecting certain businesses such as the domestic caregivers. The committee suggests that the work permit given to the caregivers in the low pay group should be extended to two years from the existing one year.
The existing application process Labor Market Impact Assessment group was time-consuming and had to be made efficient. This was severely affecting the productivity of the companies and the immigrant workers too as the renewal of their work permits are dependent on the positive feedback from LMIA.
Employment and Social Development Canada, the government department that is responsible for social programs and the labor market at the national level must check the application process of LMIA to enhance the efficiency and speed. It should also be ensured that there is enough allocation of resources to train workers for satisfying job market standards.
The existing provisional immigrant workers program has diverse streams with each requirement. This needs to be restructured as this does not cater to the specific needs of the different industries. The committee noticed that this arrangement does not adequately correspond to the job market needs of Canada.
Based on the feedback of the witnesses that appeared before the committee, it is also observed that transition plans for high-pay workers were not meeting the requirements of the highly paid workforce scarcity of the job market. Thus removing the transition plans will enable the companies to meet the workforce requirements when there is scarcity in job markets.
As of now the companies that have ten or more workers that can include low pay provisional immigrant workers, have a cap of ten percent when they apply for new LMIA. The committee found that this cap of 10% has adversely affected the productivity of certain businesses. Thus exceptions can be included for some business sectors.
During its course of research, the committee found that the existing data for job market was not suitable for assessing labor market scenario in smaller communities that are located in larger geographical areas. It was recommended by the committee that measures must be taken to collect the job market data in a way that harmonizes with the economy of local geographic areas and the provisional immigrant workforce requirements.
According to David Cohen, the attorney for the committee the recommendations of the committee will be equally beneficial to companies, Canadian workers as well as immigrant workers. Representatives from all the stakeholders were consulted before the report was submitted, he added. The committee also expressed confidence that many of the recommendations would soon be incorporated into the concerned laws for the job market and overseas hiring.