Foreign Workers’ Program Needed in Alberta
Back in September, Alberta’s municipalities voted in favor of Alberta-specific rules in regards to the temporary foreign worker’s program.
Foreign Workers Needed in Alberta
The TFW resolution, taken forward by Red Deer, was passed by villages, towns and cities during the last morning of the yearly Alberta Urban Municipalities Association.
The resolution’s main purpose is to ask the province to advocate for alterations (long and short-term) to federal changes.
The resolution was brought forward after Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer deemed this summer’s changes to be “an over-correction” which could in turn lead to shortages in Alberta’s labour market.
Veer stated: “Ultimately, we agree that the government needs to address abuses within the program. It is imperative that we demonstrate support for municipalities in the province that have the most significant labour needs.”
So, what exactly can be done about Alberta’s labour woes? Premier Jim Prentice has made repeated promises to address the Prime Minister on such matters, and AUMA president Helen Rice released a statement asking the federal government to allow province-specific changes regarding the TFW program.
Immigration and Citizenship
Although no-one has actually spoken out against the resolution, Amarjeet Sohi of Edmonton Council since added an amendment to allow discussions on immigration and citizenship between the province and the federal Government.
Sohi stated: “The federal government is basically using the temporary foreign worker program to replace the immigration program. We need more permanent people to come live in Alberta, work in Alberta and make homes in Alberta.”
Although temporary workers are most definitely needed for specific industries, Alberta has recognized that the need for permanent immigrants should not be ignored.
An advocacy association, the AUMA represents a grand total of 271 municipalities, including small villages and large urban towns. Their resolutions are by no means legally binding, but are passed to the province for serious consideration.
This resolution was not the only one that was passed at the time, and other matters included urban drilling projects, mandatory boat inspections, and a successful motion to put a program in place that will detect and reduce Alberta’s water contaminants. All in a day’s work for the people of Alberta, although some of these issues have been ongoing for a couple of years.
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About Michael Niren
Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the Associate Member of the American Bar Association. Read more
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