Changes to Temporary Foreign Workers Program
For Immediate Release December 21, 2016
Changes to Temporary Foreign Worker Program a Step in the Right Direction
On December 13, 2016, the Federal Government announced changes to the Temporary Foreign Workers Program; specifically, scrapping the “four in, four out” rule which limited an international employees’ stay in Canada to four years. The Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM) believes that this change and others outlined by the Government last week are positive ones, although there is still more that needs to be done to help fill the critical gaps in our labor force.
Canada’s Agriculture & Agri-Food industry employs 2.3 million Canadians and is full of high quality career options with competitive wages and benefits. In spite of employers’ extensive efforts to recruit and retain Canadian workers, critical labour shortages are visible and pervasive throughout the agriculture value-chain.
Farmers, cattlemen, and processors across Canada are struggling to find workers. Difficulty accessing and retaining employees limits the ability of employers in these sectors to expand their production which means forfeited job opportunities and higher food costs for Canadians. The agriculture and agri-food industry needs workers to remain globally competitive, to take advantage of export opportunities and to ensure the security, safety and sustainability of food for all Canadians.
“International farm employees, who work in permanent jobs, need a clear pathway to permanent residency as the skills they hold and acquire are very valuable to our economy”, said SARM President Ray Orb.
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