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Ottawa to cap number of foreign caregivers in Canada

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Keung, Nicholas
Publication Date: 
31 Oct 2014



Starting in December, Ottawa will replace the decades-old live-in caregivers program with two new labour streams and restrict the number of foreign nannies it accepts.

While these caregivers will no longer be obliged to live in their employer's home, Immigration Minister Chris Alexander also announced Friday that new minimum language and education requirements to become eligible to work as caregivers here would be imposed.

It's still unknown if the government will remove the right to "automatic permanent residency" for caregivers who meet their minimum employment hours and pass the necessary criminal and medical clearances.

"Caregivers matter to Canada and have made enormous contributions to Canada's economy, to our economic success, to the success of the Canadian families," Alexander told a new conference about Canada's 2015 immigration plan.

"What do these improvements mean to caregivers? They mean, first and foremost, faster processing, faster family reunification, less time away from loved ones... Caregivers will have more pathways toward permanent residency and better tools to achieve success in Canadian labour market."

According to a press release, the removal of the live-in requirement is expected to result in greater opportunities for Canadians in caregiver occupations and an increase in wages for caregivers hired from abroad if employers demonstrate that there are no Canadians available for the job.

Liza Draman of the Caregivers Action Centre said the Toronto advocacy group's 1,000-plus members are concerned about what is to come on Nov. 30 when Alexander is scheduled to announce further changes affecting the path to permanent residency for foreign caregivers.

"The only thing that is good about (Friday's) announcement is the end to the live-in requirement," said Draman, a former live-in caregiver from the Philippines. "If the minister is serious about improving the condition for the caregivers, he should grant them status upon arrival."


Read online at the Toronto Star 

Entered Date: 
5 Nov 2014
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