I have no statistics on this but, as predicted, the refusal rate for Labor Market Opinion (LMO) applications seem to be on the rise. With the downturn in the economy and more stringent regulations respecting LMO applications, foreign workers and their Canadian employers are having a harder time getting approvals.
A number of years ago, Service Canada, formally Human Resources Development Canada (HRSDC) followed what was known as the “Canada First” policy in adjudicating cases which was really a protectionist stance against foreign workers. During the Canada First days, HRSDC officers had to focus, among other factors, on whether Canadians were available to do the job offered to a foreign national first before granting a positive Labour Market Opinion.
This approach was never abandoned altogether but due to the reality of globalization, a more worldly, economically friendly attitude towards foreign workers and their employers was adopted. During these golden years, Labour Market Opinions were approved in record numbers as the demand for foreign workers bringing their unique talents and skills to the Canadian labor market surged. However, it seems that the pendulum has swung once again towards the Canada First approach, unfortunately during a time when Canada needs international talent more than ever.
Labour Market Opinion applications therefore need to be prepared as persuasively and thoroughly as possible to avoid refusals. Labour Market Opinions that show that Canadian employers have made a sincere effort to find Canadian employers first will be considered more credible and have a higher chance of success.
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