Sunday, December 30, 2007

Amnesty to illegal immigrants in Canada by the Canadian government - By Mr. Rezaur Rahman (Barrister & Solicitor)

Like all Canadians I am hit with snow storm and pile of snow. I am not fussy about winter. The more you try to resist it the more you become grumpy; therefore I go along with it. Shoveling snow, enduring chilling temperature and trying to keep your smile even though you feel like you have just received strong and paralyzing anesthetic (BOTOX ?) in your face is part of Canadian life.

No, its not snow that makes me exasperated, it is the annual rumor mill that sometimes drains my energy. Since I came to Canada 16 years ago, I have been listening to different kinds of rumors every year. One of the popular rumors that often come back at the end of every year is a declaration of amnesty to illegal immigrants in Canada by the Canadian government.

For some reason some people believe that the Canadian government wants to make people happy at the Christmas time or on the eve of New Year and therefore it has decided to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants. Well, it has not happened so far and there is no sign of that happening in the near future. When the year draws to its end I am hit by a barrage of phone calls from my beloved deshi brothers and sisters. When I politely disagree with them about the declaration of amnesty, some of them even try to convince me to call the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration to confirm their statement. They nicely tell me that probably I missed that very important announcement due to my busy work schedule.

A new rumor has been floating this year for the last couple of months. Some people (Canadian citizens or Permanent Residents) believe that if they start living in Manitoba or Saskatoon and invest a certain amount of money they will be able to sponsor 20 persons to immigrate to Canada . This is a flat lie. There is no such program.

Every year thousands of temporary foreign workers are coming to Canada to work for a few years. In most of the cases an employer in Canada files an application to Human Resources and Social Development Canada (HRSDC) for a Labor Market Opinion (LMO) for a particular category of employment. In that application, the Canadian employer explains that he has tried to hire a Canadian citizen or a Permanent Resident in a particular position but did not get a qualified candidate. The employer must submit proof of newspaper advertisement, job bank postings or job fair participation as an initiative to hire employee.

The HRSDC must be satisfied about the genuineness of the offer of employment and the employers' effort to hire a Canadian or a Permanent Resident at first. The HRSDC will issue a positive Labor Market Opinion (LMO) if it is convinced that hiring a foreign national will not affect the Canadian Labor Market negatively. The effect must be positive or neutral.

So obtaining a positive LMO is a first step to hire a foreign worker. Once the LMO is granted, the employer will send that to the prospective foreign worker who will then submit his application for Work Permit and the LMO at the designated Canadian Visa Office for his country. The Visa Officer will interview the applicant and will issue the Work Permit to him if he finds the applicant eligible.

It is therefore important, for a Bangladeshi who wants to come to Canada as a foreign worker, to first find a prospective employer who is willing to hire the applicant. One must be very careful about the THIRD PARTY who works as an intermediary between the employer and the applicant. Sometimes this THIRD PARTY charges high commission or service fees and cheat people by arranging false job offer or by getting employment offer for a job that does not yield enough savings.

Always be careful if the job offer sounds too good to be true. Try to understand why an employer in Canada is willing to hire you or why he will wait for months to get you to Canada . Definitely there are jobs available for foreign workers in Canada . There is extreme shortage of manpower in some sectors of employment but once again never put your guard down against suspicious job offers or activities of THIRD PARTY.

There is another false belief among applicants that if they come to Canada as foreign workers they will eventually become permanent residents of Canada . Please remember that a Foreign Worker comes to Canada to meet the labor shortage in different sectors. The category is known as Temporary Foreign Worker.

However once an applicant is in Canada he can apply for Permanent Resident as a Skilled Worker. To apply he must achieve minimum 67 points on the basis of different factors. His Canadian job experience will enhance his points. No such application can be filed in Canada . The application must be submitted at a Canadian Visa Office that is designated for the country of citizenship or permanent residence of the applicant. For example an applicant from Bangladesh who is now working in Canada must submit his application at the Canadian High Commission in Singapore . Or alternatively he can file application at the Canadian High Commission in another country if he has at least one-year visa for that country. So if the applicant has a visa for one year in the U.S, he can file his application at the Canadian Consulate in Buffalo , New York .

Applicants who are applying for permanent resident status under the skilled worker category can obtain extra points if a Canadian employer offers him a job. This offer must be approved by the HRSDC. The approval is issued as “Arranged Employment Opinion (AEO)”. The applicant cannot obtain any work permit on the basis of an AEO. It is issued only to support the applicant's application for Permanent Residence of Canada.

The only work that leads to Permanent Residence is the work as a Live-in Caregiver. I will discuss that category in my next Blog. I believe the Bangladeshis are far behind the citizens of many countries who enjoy the benefit of this category.

Well, the following are the categories of jobs in the Province of Ontario (There are lists for some other provinces too) for which there are not enough Canadian citizens or Permanent Residents of Canada available. The Canadian government is therefore exempting the employers from filing extensive proof of their recruitment effort in Canada . They must prove that they advertise on the Government of Canada's National Job Bank or the regional equivalence for at least 7 days or they have already established an ongoing recruitment mechanism such as using recognized internet sites, unions, professional sites, newspapers, newsletters, professional journals to hire employees. If you can find a suitable employer who wants to hire an employee for the following occupations, your application may be processed quickly.

The following part is not written by me and it is the reproduction of the material that is available in the website of the HRSDC:

The following information is reproduced with no commercial intention but with the intention of disseminating useful information to the public in general:

Regional Occupations under Pressure List for Ontario

A new process has been developed to assist employers who are experiencing difficulty filling job vacancies. HRSDC/Service Canada is implementing Regional Occupations under Pressure lists to reduce the amount of time for an employer to hire a temporary foreign worker.

Employers wishing to hire temporary foreign workers for occupations that appear on a Regional Occupations under Pressure list will only be required to conduct minimum advertising efforts rather than the more comprehensive recruitment efforts normally required under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program. However, employers will still need to satisfy all other Temporary Foreign Worker Program requirements.

Employers who wish to hire temporary foreign workers in occupations appearing on a Regional Occupations under Pressure list will be considered to have conducted appropriate recruitment efforts if they:

  1. Advertise on the Government of Canada's national Job Bank (or the equivalent in Saskatchewan , Quebec , or the Northwest Territories ) for a minimum of 7 calendar days;
  2. Demonstrate that they have established, on-going recruitment mechanisms already in place (e.g., using recognized job internet sites, unions, professional associations, corporate website, professional journals, newspapers, newsletters).

* For positions classified as being skill level C or D under the National Occupational Classification 1 system, employers will be required to satisfy both conditions.

1 The listed occupations are based on the National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. The NOC is the nationally accepted taxonomy and organizational framework of occupations in the Canadian labour market. For more information on the NOC system, please visit:

Occupations under Pressure:

Management Occupations

NOC Code



Senior Managers – Financial, Communications and Other Business Services


Financial Managers


Purchasing Managers


Banking, Credit and Other Investment Managers


Managers in Health Care

Business, Finance and Administration Occupations

NOC Code



Financial and Investment Analysts


Specialists in Human Resources

Natural and Applied Sciences and Related Occupations

NOC Code



Biologists and Related Scientists


Civil Engineers


Mechanical Engineers



Health Occupations

NOC Code



Specialist Physicians


General Practitioners and Family Physicians




Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists




Registered Nurses


Medical Laboratory Technologists and Pathologists' Assistants


Medical Radiation Technologists


Dental Hygienists and Dental Therapists


Licensed Practical Nurses


Ambulance Attendants and Other Paramedical Occupations

Trades, Transport and Equipment Operators and Related Occupations

NOC Code



Heavy Duty Equipment Mechanics


Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Mechanics


Automotive Service Technicians, Truck Mechanics and Mechanical Repairers

For more information, please visit:

I believe you will find this information useful. I wish you all a very happy Eid-ul-Ajha, Merry Christmas and a very happy and prosperous new year.

Copyright © 2007-2008 Rezaur Rahman (Barrister & Solicitor). All Rights Reserved.