Not all jobs for temporary foreign workers need to be advertised

  • September 25, 2018

Labour Market Impact Assessments are a fact of life for companies bringing temporary foreign workers into Canada. The rules are written so that companies have to make every effort to hire locally – including specific advertising requirements – before a foreign worker can step into the job.

But what if you’re Google Canada and you need Sergey Brin’s special talents for six months? Or say you’re a manufacturer and as part of your purchase agreement the foreign company that made your equipment must also service it? Do you still need to advertise widely for a Canadian to do the job?

These are the kinds of questions addressed by the CBA Immigration Law Section in its response to a request from Employment and Social Development Canada for input on occupations not subject to the minimal advertising requirements in LMIAs, and which should be transitioned into LMIA-exempt or work permit-exempt occupations under the International Mobility Program.

Fifteen categories have already been granted variations from the minimal advertising requirements for TFWs; the Section limited its remarks to the variations for academics, owner/operators/positions for a short duration, religion instructors, specialized service technicians/specialized service providers, and warranty work.

The Section notes that while there is a variation for academics, “ESDC officers typically hold a university employer to the same advertising standards as regular LMIA applications. For example, an application for a Foreign Academic that does not include advertising on the National Job Bank will almost always be rejected, despite the LMIA Variation guidelines not requiring advertising on this site.”

Removing the LMIA requirement for foreign academics, the Section says, would attract new knowledge to Canadian campuses, promote mobility and reciprocal opportunities abroad.

Its recommendation in this case is that ESDC create a new International Mobility Program for foreign academics conducting teaching and research.

The Section makes a total of six recommendations for the sectors it addresses in the submission, including that ESDC continue to offer the owner/operator LMIA variation, and that it extend the LMIA exemptions to include specialized foreign workers coming to Canada for a short time, and those coming to perform regular maintenance or other technical work on equipment no longer under warranty. As well, it recommends allowing for work permits valid for longer periods – up to a year for foreign nationals in the country only periodically.

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