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Labour Shortages in Canada

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A founding partner of Abramovich & Tchern and a skilled litigator, Lev focuses exclusively on immigration and refugee law. His immigration practice is focused on complex corporate and personal immigration and refugee law matters.
Labour Shortages in Canada

Mr. Lev Abramovich appeared on TVO’s The Agenda on December 6, 2022, to discuss whether Canada’s labour shortage can be resolved through immigration. In short, the answer is mixed.

In the TVO interview, Lev suggests that bureaucracy and red tape within Canada’s immigration department creates considerable hurdles for employers as well as applicants, and ultimately hurts Canada’s economic and social fabric.

For example, the Labour Market Impact Assessment process is unduly complicated for certain classes of applications, with the requirements having little to do with employee protection or other policy considerations.

Canada’s labour shortage will be long-term challenge

In our view, a pragmatic approach that balances all stakeholder interests (foreign workers and employers) must be taken, cutting out red-tape, and promoting equity and inclusion. In the alternative, labour market shortages may be further exacerbated as foreign worker struggle to transition to permanent residence, which erodes their rights.

In addition, more must be done to streamline the integration of foreign professionals, such as doctors, engineers and accountants, who are coming to Canada as permanent residents. For example, when a foreign trained doctor finally arrives in Canada, they face considerable challenges in qualifying to practice medicine, which creates a disconnect between the selection process and the realities of the labour market. Similar issues are economic immigrants in other professions (primarily under the Federal Skilled Worker class), and more must be done to help new immigrants utilize their foreign training and experience in Canada, with the ultimate goal being a streamlined transition to the profession they utilized in their immigration application.

In addition, Lev advocates for a greater public discussion regarding international students, who are often sold the dream of a study-based immigration by consultants and educational agencies. While Canadian colleges greatly benefit from the increased tuition payments and Canada’s labour market receives a significant short-term boost, students face challenges in transitioning to permanent residence, and despite their considerable investments, most will not be in a position to submit a permanent residence application. While this fact alone is not problematic in and of itself, Canada should do more to ensure those coming to study in Canada understand that they may not be able to stay on a permanent basis, and Canadian colleges should not be viewing foreign students as a revenue source.

If you, or someone you know, are experiencing problems with your immigration application, contact us today and find out how we can help you.

Lev Abramovich

A founding partner of Abramovich & Tchern and a skilled litigator, Lev focuses exclusively on immigration and refugee law. His immigration practice is focused on complex corporate and personal immigration and refugee law matters.