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Posted Thursday May 14, 2020


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Employer Help

Government announces help for employers to meet their labour needs

Process launched on Tuesday allows temporary workers get back to work quickly

With the COVID-19 pandemic impacting almost every sector in Canada, temporary foreign workers and their employers are confronted by new challenges in a rapidly changing job market.

Many temporary workers with employer-specific work permits lost their jobs this spring. While some have left Canada, others are unable to leave due to international travel restrictions or the reduction in flights available. Under existing rules, to change jobs they need to apply and wait for a new work permit to be issued before starting to work at their new job.

“Temporary foreign workers are an integral part of the Canadian workforce and Canada’s COVID-19 response. They are helping us meet urgent labour needs, to ensure our food security and deliver essential goods and services. While there will always be jobs for Canadians who choose to work in these sectors, these changes help support our economy by ensuring that temporary foreign workers already here can contribute during these extraordinary times," said the Honourable Carla Qualtrough, P.C., M.P., Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion.

At the same time, many employers in sectors that have ongoing labour needs and who provide critical goods and services to Canadians, such as agriculture, agri-food and health care, find themselves with urgent needs for additional employees.

That is why the Government is announcing, effective immediately, a new, temporary policy that will drastically reduce the time it takes for a temporary foreign worker to start a new job.

While this policy is in place, a worker who is already in Canada and has secured a new job offer, typically backed by a labour market test, can get approval to start working in their new job, even while their work permit application is being fully processed. This will cut what can often take 10 weeks or more, down to 10 days or less.

As part of Canada’s whole-of-government approach, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada will continue to look for ways to support the economy and protect the health and safety of Canadians during the COVID-19 outbreak.













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