Citizenship and Immigration Canada

Citizenship and Immigration Canada

June 17, 2009 09:38 ET

Government of Canada Introduces Amendments to Protect Vulnerable Foreign Workers From Human Trafficking

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - June 17, 2009) - The Government of Canada will today reintroduce amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) to help protect vulnerable foreign workers such as exotic dancers and live-in caregivers who could be victims of exploitation.

The bill was tabled in the previous Parliament but died on the order paper when an election was called.

"This will strengthen Canada's immigration system by helping to prevent situations where temporary workers in Canada may be abused, exploited or possibly become victims of human trafficking," said Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, President of the Queen's Privy Council and Minister for la Francophonie, Josee Verner, speaking on behalf of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney.

"The amendments will help further our agenda of increasing protections for temporary foreign workers, by preventing situations of abuse from happening in the first place," added Labour Minister Rona Ambrose.

The bill would give the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration the authority to instruct immigration officers to deny work permits to vulnerable foreign workers who may be trafficked into Canada and forced to perform humiliating and degrading jobs against their will.

"This is one more measure that will help ensure that the expectation of safety within Canada is preserved," added Joy Smith, Member of Parliament (Kildonan-St. Paul).

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