New Federal “Fast Track” for Skilled Workers
Updated: Tue Apr. 10 2012 17:44:39
The federal government has announced plans to make it easier for skilled trades people to immigrate to Canada.
The move is being made to fill labour shortages in construction and oil and gas sectors.
The government plans to create a separate, streamlined program to skilled labour by relaxing the rules for formal education, focusing more on practical training and work experience.
“One of the reasons why we haven’t had a skilled trades stream in the past is it’s kind of hard to assess if a welder from Poland meets the red seal certification standard in Alberta, but we think the employers are well suited to look at someone’s background experience, they’re training and make that assessment,” says Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney.
That’s good news for Dawit Ayalew who moved to Canada two weeks ago from Ethiopia.
It took the welder six years to get here and he’s glad to hear about the changes. He hopes it helps bring people to Canada faster.
But critics are concerned about companies recruiting immigrants to fill holes in the labour market, forgetting these people will be settling into a whole new country.
“They’re coming here to start a new life. The job becomes very important. Employers need people, they’ll do anything to get them, once they don’t need them they’re left alone,” Fariborz Birjandian with the Calgary Catholic Immigration Society.
The federal government hopes to implement the new Federal Skilled Worker Program by the end of the year.
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