Fort St. John Mayor calls for an end to Temporary Foreign Workers Program moratorium

The Federal Government put the program on hold last month after a series of allegations that some small businesses were uprooting Canadian workers and finding room for temporary foreign workers who would raise no problems with hours, holidays or working conditions.

Mayor Lori Ackerman says the suspension of the program is a barrier to business in the energy sector at a time when increased services are essential. According to Ackerman, development projects are halted and may be cancelled because a healthy labour pool is essential to a sustainable business plan.

“We understand and appreciate that Canadians are concerned about competition for jobs in Canada. However, the energy sector in Canada’s North West needs the support the TFW program provides” said Mayor Ackerman.

In a press release Monday, the Mayor has respectfully asked The Prime Minister and the Office of the Minster of Employment and Social Development to immediately provide a plan for review of this program and a plan to allow resource communities to get back to work.

The Liberals are proposing a series of fixes to Ottawa’s troubled temporary foreign worker program as fresh allegations of abuse emerge almost daily.

Immigration critic John McCallum is proposing five reforms to the program that focus partly on better monitoring of employers who apply to bring in foreigners.

He says the government should scale the program back and focus on its original purpose — to fill labour shortages when there is a legitimate need.

New rule changes are expected soon, including beefing up the auditing powers of federal inspectors.

McCallum also repeated his demand for a review by the auditor general.

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