jobCan Inc.

December 07, 2007 15:19 ET

Exploited Immigrants No Longer Ignored

Manitoba government focuses on scam artists and unscrupulous foreign recruiters

Attention: City Editor, Media Editor, News Editor, World News Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor WINNIPEG, MANITOBA, MEDIA ADVISORY--(Marketwire - Dec. 7, 2007) - The Manitoba government has recently announced its intentions to better regulate foreign recruiters by amending the Employment Services Act. Originally put in place to govern employment agencies, the Act clearly prohibits the charging of fees to job seekers. For the most part this has translated into protection for provincial job applicants, but hasn't been near as effective for foreign workers desperately trying to migrate to Manitoba to help alleviate Canada's growing labour shortages.

Stories abound of immigrants paying thousands of dollars to recruiters leaving them heavily in debt upon arriving in Canada. The immigrants who did arrive might be considered lucky since some never saw their money or their recruiters again. As well, the employers who arranged for these temporary foreign workers were cast in a negative light and met with government investigation.

"We applaud the decision of Labour Minister Nancy Allan to take decisive action to rectify this problem," says Stacey Belding, lawyer and Managing Director of jobCan Inc., a Winnipeg-based foreign recruitment company. "Immigrants and Manitoba businesses need the support and backing of our government to ensure that illegal practices are halted. New guidelines are required with an immediate call to action."

The foreign recruitment industry is here to stay with more and more businesses turning to these services to find them skilled workers. Our country's current demographics - low birth rates, aging population, greater concentration of workers in certain provinces and a shift in occupational choices - has left businesses looking beyond Canadian borders for trained and experienced labour.

"The problem that begs to be addressed by our government is multi-faceted," said Ms. Belding. "Foreign recruiters and immigration consultants need to be made accountable for their actions when in breach of the legislation. Currently the Employment Services Act provides for a maximum fine of $25.00. This is hardly a deterrent. Sadly, the Act hasn't seen any amendments since 1987 but Canada's economy and job market has."

Ms Belding continued: "We have been lobbying our government to take a stronger stand on this issue and recommend that they provide overseas educational campaigns to inform prospective immigrants about illegal placement fees and other recruitment practices.

"I think Manitoba businesses would benefit greatly from our government providing financial assistance for training, incentive programs for those who must recruit abroad, and assistance with settlement for their workers. As well, we would like to see protection for foreign workers who complain about exploitive practices in Canada and aid in finding alternative employment."

While some businesses have had success with foreign recruiters, others have taken it upon themselves to do their own overseas recruiting. They are finding out the hard way that locating qualified candidates, immigration requirements, credentialing issues and settlement in Canada should best be handled by the experts. Once again, it's a matter of finding the qualified recruiters who are above reproach, who care about Canada's economy and who put human needs first.

/For further information: contact Stacey Belding at jobCan in Winnipeg by phoning (204)254-0535, or by email at jobCan is a Winnipeg-based, full service placement and immigration company operated by the law firm of Carroll, Fisher, Belding with permanent offices in Berlin, Germany and Manila, Philippines. jobCan doesn't charge candidates and safeguards against such practices. They are a strong advocate for both immigrant and employer concerns in relation to foreign recruitment. Their services include candidate screening and recruitment, video conference interviews, credential assessment, immigration paperwork, and comprehensive settlement assistance./ IN: ECONOMY, JUSTICE, LABOUR, POLITICS, TRANSPORT

Contact Information

  • Stacey Belding, Managing Director, jobCan Inc.
    Primary Phone: 204-254-0535 ext. 224
    Toll-Free: 877-856-2226