Press Room

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty tabled the 2013 Federal Budget on March 21, 2013 and Announced Reforms to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program

According to Minister Flaherty, the Government will take action to reform Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker Program to ensure that Canadians are given the first chance at available jobs. The Government is focused on connecting Canadians with available jobs and ensuring that Canada’s domestic labour force is prioritized for job opportunities. Canada continues to experience major labour and skill shortages in many regions, and Canadians who are seeking jobs should always be first in line for these opportunities.

In order to help unemployed Canadians get back to work and ensure that Canadians are given the first chance at available jobs, the Government is taking action to reform Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker Program. With details to be announced in the coming months, the Government will:

  • Work with employers to ensure that temporary foreign workers are relied upon only when Canadians genuinely cannot fill those jobs.
  • Increase the recruitment efforts that employers must make to hire Canadians before they will be eligible to apply for temporary foreign workers, including increasing the length and reach of advertising.
  • Assist employers who legitimately rely on temporary foreign workers, due to a lack of qualified Canadian applicants, find ways to ensure that they have a plan to transition to a Canadian workforce over time.
  • Amend the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations to restrict the identification of non-official languages as job requirements when hiring through the Temporary Foreign Worker process.

The Government will also propose to introduce user fees for employers applying for temporary foreign workers through the labour market opinion process so that these costs are no longer absorbed by taxpayers.

For additional information, please contact Green and Spiegel LLP.