Canadian Caregivers Association CCA-ACAF

August 04, 2009 11:30 ET

Repeat: Caregivers Call on Ontario Government for Urgent Change

Government Legislation May Overlook Major Concerns

Attention: City Editor, Lifestyle Editor, News Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor TORONTO, ON – MEDIA ADVISORY--(Marketwire - Aug. 4, 2009) - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

In response to the Government of Ontario's recent consultations with stakeholder groups, caregivers are expressing their concerns that pending legislation may overlook their major concerns for the welfare of live-in caregivers in the province. Similar to Manitoba legislation to date, Ontario's lawmakers have focused largely on the role of fees, while overlooking the needs of caregivers working in the province - needs that are extremely urgent and essential to the long-term protection of vulnerable temporary foreign workers.

Jintana L., an ex-caregiver and now permanent resident of Ontario was happy with the improved pay she received in Canada, versus the United States, but remains concerned that too much attention is being given to money, while support structures are severely lacking. "No one to came to see where I was living, to see if I had a proper room or to see that I wasn't being abused. All there was were these bad websites and confusing laws. Only my agency was helping me. It can be scary not having a councilor. Now I hear the government wants to do something about fees overseas - but what about nannies that are here? I would gladly pay some money to feel secure that I have someone to help me."

Regina D., another ex-caregiver participant in the LCP program shares Jintana's opinion regarding the support she had. "There was so little support when I was a nanny. I don't think they are changing this. I think they are not listening to the nannies that want to have someone to talk to - that want to be safe once they are in Canada and working for a family. Are they going to change this? My friends had such a hard time in the program. Sometimes they just wanted to give-up and go back to their home countries. I don't think that this is going to change. Actually, I think there will just be fewer nannies this way, but maybe that is what they want." Regina's concerns highlight the province's failings. American and European standards are far more stringent regarding counseling and oversight services. Ontario has fallen well behind any G7 Au Pair program in this regard.

Recent Ontario reforms have included the creation of a toll-free number for caregivers to call with major problems, but legislation introduced in the fall largely amounts to regulation around fees charged to potential caregivers overseas, and not a comprehensive protection regime to help those same caregivers once they are in Ontario and have far more immediate and significant concerns. Jintana, Regina, and thousands others are calling for Ontario's inclusion of their input in its legislative agenda, as fees charged overseas have little bearing on the living and working conditions of the province.

The Canadian Caregivers Association (www.cca-acaf.ca) is prepared to work with community, government, and industry partners on a non-profit basis to provide a wide range of services for caregivers living and working in Ontario, including consultations, job inspection, and maintaining records of abusive and faulty employment conditions.

### /For further information: http://www.cca-acaf.ca, http://www.cca-acaf.ca/pr9.html/ IN: ECONOMY, LABOUR, POLITICS, SOCIAL

Contact Information

  • Adrian Duchamp, Canadian Caregivers Association CCA-ACAF
    Primary Phone: 613-686-6218
    E-mail: info@cca-acaf.ca