Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker Program set to Change in the Next Few Months


Changes are expected to be made to Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFW) in the next two to three months. These changes are in response to the negative feedback on the Conservative Government’s previous modifications to the program and are in conjunction with a Canadian immigration policy overhaul. Employers and private industry complain of increasingly long wait times which have hindered their ability to recruit foreign talent.

The April 2013 modifications to the TFW program aimed to give Canadians priority for jobs; an objective which resulted in ever increasing approval and processing wait times for TFW applicants. Included in the upcoming modifications is the proposal of the “Expression of Interest (EOI) system which provides a quickened process for those applicants who express significant interest in entering Canada on a permanent basis. The EOI program is expected to reduce the demand for TFWs and reduce waiting times.
More than 500,000 TFWs have entered Canada since 2006. This important number shows that Canada relies heavily on TFWs to complete and help grow the labor market. Without foreign workers, many industries would be understaffed, both for high skilled and low skilled positions.
Prominent members of the Canadian Government, including Prime Minister Harper and the Minister for Immigration have been noted as saying that the TFW program is intended to be a last resort option for employers. This intention is not in line with reality, foreign workers are needed to fill the gaps in the labor market. They have also explained that the long processing wait times are to ensure that the applications do not contain false or fraudulent information which in turn protects Canadians and TFWs.
It is expected that the modifications to the TFW program will increase turnaround time for applications and provide better protections for all involved parties.

To learn more about Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker Program click here.

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