Today at CBC News, we read the sad story of one young immigrant girl who came to Canada under Temporary Foreign Worker Program. The girl’s employer attempted to extort sex from her, by threatening to cancel her immigration application under the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP), which he sponsored.
Unfortunately, people who come to Canada from other countries as temporary workers or other immigration programs are sometimes exploited by their employers through forced labour or sexual exploitation. In Canada, this is called Human Trafficking. After she filed a complaint with the authorities, she suffered from harassment and blackmailing from her employer.
Sadly, victims are controlled by their employers and made to provide their labor or sexual services through intimidation, force, sexual assault and threats of violence to themselves, their families or friends. Migrant workers hesitate to complain for fear of losing their jobs or status in Canada, lack of information, and language barriers make feel these foreign workers vulnerable and end up in situations of coercion or labour trafficking.
The federal government has shown interest in funding a support network for migrant workers. Since 2016, the federal government has shown an increased sense of responsibility for the protection of the rights of migrant workers in Canada. It is important that you understand your rights while you are in Canada as a temporary foreign worker. It is your right to contact these offices and visit these websites.
You DO NOT need anyone’s permission and an employer CANNOT penalize you or have you deported for contacting them.
Crime Stoppers National Tipline 1-800-222-8477
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) 1-800-242-2100
Royal Canadian Mounted Police Human Trafficking National Coordination Centre 1-855-850-4640
Your employer CANNOT:
– Force you to perform duties that you were not hired or trained to do;
– Force you to work if you are sick or injured;
– Take your passport or work permit away from you;
– Have you deported from Canada or change you immigration status; or
– Make you pay them back for fees they paid to hire you.
As IMM advisors and immigration consultants, we would like to encourage our clients and all foreign workers to report and stop these abusive situations. The Government of Canada can help protect you if you think you might be a victim. You will not need to pay a fee to receive the help from the government.
Employment and Social Development Canada.
Evaluating Migrant Worker Rights Canada 2018 – Canadian Council for Refugees.