Quebec still experiencing long-standing workforce recruitment challenges: labour department
The maximum number of temporary foreign workers in low-wage positions which Quebec employers in specific sectors can hire has been increased up to 20 per cent to address the current labour shortage crisis in the province.
The measure is part of the pilot project developed by the federal and Quebec governments in August 2021, which allows for the introduction of new flexibilities for employers under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program.
“A critical part of Canada’s economic recovery and long-term growth is a strong workforce,” said Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion Carla Qualtrough. “That’s why our government is updating the Temporary Foreign Worker Program to help address labour shortages in Quebec immediately.”
The Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) has also begun upgrading Temporary Foreign Worker compliance regime to better protect temporary foreign workers in the future. Ongoing activities to strengthen ESDC’s risk-based approach to target higher risk employers include:
- Enhancing temporary foreign worker inspection tools and mandatory training to strengthen the quality and timeliness of inspections;
- Continuing to leverage its tip line service, allowing workers to flag any situation of abuse or misuse of the program in a confidential manner;
- Continuing to raise employers’ awareness of their obligations to foster compliance with the conditions of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program;
- Expanding the concierge service with consulates, which helps ESDC to identify concerns that need immediate attention.
“Quebec employers in the agri-food industry have been hit very hard by the labour shortage,” Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Marie-Claude Bibeau said. “. . . This pilot project will allow businesses to recruit more temporary foreign workers and reduce the pressure on their operations.”