Sergio Gonzalez moved from Mexico to Nova Scotia five years ago and got a job at a McDonald’s restaurant. Since then, he’s worked his way up to manager and handles all aspects of the business, from making burgers to managing inventory to scheduling employees.
However, he might soon have to leave Canada. The federal government is refusing to renew his temporary foreign worker permit, following a crackdown last year on the program to cut the number of such workers in Canada. The federal government introduced new rules last June excluding employers from hiring low-wage temporary foreign workers in regions where the unemployment rate is above six per cent, and requiring employers to cap the number of foreign workers they hire at…show more content… The problem is that Gonzalez falls just short of education standard. He is studying diligently through a local adult education program. However, Benton says there will not be enough time before Gonzalez’s foreign worker permit expires. He is urging the federal government to allow workers like Gonzalez to stay a little longer, giving them a chance for permanent residency. He says Gonzalez is experienced with managing McDonalds; he has been paying taxes for nearly four years, and is just the kind of immigrant Nova Scotia needs.
Over the last couple of years, there have been extensive changes in Canada’s immigration policies. The biggest change has been the increased admission of temporary foreign workers (TFWs). Unlike immigrants, temporary foreign workers come to Canada on restrictive visas and do not have the rights of permanent residents (CIC, 2010). Their admission to the country and employment are reliant on not taking opportunities and jobs away from Canadians. Statistics on temporary foreign workers vary widely, depending on how they are accumulated. According to Citizenship and Immigration Canada, in 2000 there were 177,781 temporary foreign workers in the country. By 2010, the number was 432,682, a 140 per cent increase.
When most Canadians think of temporary foreign workers, they likely think of field workers in Canada’s farms or caregiver programs. A 2007 parliamentary report, however, shows that this is far from the