Canada launches pilot program to undocumented workers residence

Oscar Vigil

Toronto, Glen. For the moment, the scope of the program are few, since it is only aimed at undocumented construction workers living in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), But the results obtained from this will serve to implement a larger and more comprehensive program that helps immigrant communities throughout the country., local politicians assure.

This is the firmware, that the past came into effect 29 of July and that works under the name of “Program of Temporary Public Policy for Construction Workers without Status in the Metropolitan Area of ​​Toronto (Temporary Public Policy for Out-of-Status Construction Workers in the Greater Toronto Area, GTA), it will only help 500 undocumented construction workers.

But nevertheless, the expectations it has generated are great, especially if one takes into account that the fight for a regularization program for people living without immigration status in Canada has been taking place for nearly two decades within the Latin American community..

Federal Deputy Julie Dzerowicz, of the Liberal Party currently in power, was one of the people who promoted the program. She represents one of Toronto's constituencies, Davenport, and says that since he took office almost four years ago, There have been many people who have approached him seeking help because they have relatives without status who have worked more than 10 years in the country, who have paid taxes, They have built a lifetime and are looking for a solution to their immigration problem.

But also, dice, many small businesses and unions have spoken to her saying that they cannot fill the jobs they have, both skilled and unskilled workers, because there is not enough workforce in the market.

“And they have clearly told me that many of these places are being filled with people without status., since many of those workers began to work legally, but over time they were left as undocumented because they lost the status they had ", Explain.

This is how the initiative to create this microprogram came, with the idea of ​​starting with construction workers and then exploring the other industries.

"We want to know what the needs are, who are applying. The idea is to help workers and their families, it is an ongoing experiment for us ", points.

The program is aimed at undocumented GTA construction workers, and in order to qualify they must have been in Canada for more than five years, have a job in the construction industry in the GTA, have a level 4 or greater of language (english or french), have family in Canada, not have a criminal record and have paid taxes during their entire stay in the country.

The deputy explains that requests to qualify for the microprogram must be channeled through the Canadian Labor Congress (Canadian Labour Congress, CLC), a national organization that has many partners in the construction industry in the GTA, but it clarifies that the person concerned does not have to be a member of any workers' union.

“This project must be part of a larger federal government program, define which workers with what kind of skills we need in Canada, as well as what workers with what kind of skills we have. (Because) we must have an appropriate mechanism for unskilled workers, for the qualified and for the semi-qualified, and that they can apply from their countries of origin ", Explain.

To end, MP Dzerowicz, whose mother is of Mexican origin, put his personal case as an example: “I am the daughter of a skilled worker and an unskilled worker, And they produced a member of the federal parliament! These are the people who are contributing to Canada!!”, he said.