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Cost-benefit analysis of expanding the exemption list of positions not requiring a renewed Labour Market Opinion (LMO)

The Canadian government seems to want to reduce costs, waiting lists and processing times for immigrants and temporary workers to this country.  A step in the right direction would be to expand the exemption list of positions not requiring a renewed LMO.

Currently, a new LMO is required every 12 months when a temporary worker seeks to return to the seasonal position he had previous.  Service Canada’s reasons for this are to assure wage increases are incorporated into the contract and that the labour market within Canada cannot fill that position.

First of all, there are labour laws in each province that determine wage rates and minimum labour code requirements.  For CIC to assure wage rates are up to date is redundant.  Companies and employers can be fined and/or charged with going against those minimums and breaking the labour codes.

Checking to see if there are Canadians or permanent residents available for the job each year should only occur if there is a drastic downturn in the economy or at least in the positions pertaining to the application.  CIC can remove those from the list of exempt (LMO renewal) jobs when necessary.

For instance:  An employer hires and trains a TFW to work in the kitchen at a ski resort for the season.  The initial LMO was positive and all the other requirements for temporary employment were otherwise met.  At the end of the season, the worker goes back to their country, happy and looking forward to returning for the next ski season.  The employer is impressed with the persons work and is looking forward to rehiring him/her for next season.

By not requiring a LMO renewal every year, the TFW will not fear possible refusal of a TWP.

By not requiring a LMO renewal every year, the employers can look forward to this “great” employee returning next season.  The employers wouldn’t have to worry about the requirements and bureaucracy involved in applying for a new LMO, nor would they have to concern themselves about the possibility of having to retrain someone new.  A busy business owner or human resources department wouldn’t need to spend the time or expense recruiting and training new people to fill the same position every year.

Those opposed to the lifting of this restriction (some unemployed) must realize that the position was offered initially (through minimum advertising requirements) and could only be filled by a TFW at the time (positive LMO).

To propose this change, one must look at the “big picture” or the cost-benefit analysis:

  • Less retraining = less expense = more profit = more taxes paid and/or capital re-investment
  • Annual opportunity for the TFW = better able to plan for his/her family’s future needs = no need for permanent residency = no bureaucratic efforts required for a new LMO or to process a PR application = less hours of government employee time = tax savings

I wouldn’t be surprised if Minister Kenney has a proposal similar to this on his desk.

William Howie
Immigration Program Student at Ashton College
under the tutelage of Jose Godoy Toku

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