Foreign skilled worker demand has risen this year for Canadian employers
Western Canadian employers seeking Foreign skilled workers have seen a significant rise this year, with a 39% increase in LMIA applications nationwide and 83% in Western Canada.
Yukon is the sole exception, with a slight decrease. Nunavut had the highest application growth, followed by Northwest Territories, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan. LMIA processing times are slow, with Alberta having the longest. This is because fewer applications are in priority processing streams.
Efforts have been made to modernize the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, including distributing files across the national network, moving away from paper applications, and simplifying applications for compliant employers through the Recognized Employer Pilot.
The Recognized Employer Pilot
The Recognized Employer Pilot (REP) is a two-phase, three-year pilot project. Applications for positions on the Phase 1 REP occupations list will be accepted starting September 12, 2023. Phase 2 applications will be accepted beginning in January 2024. The phase you apply for will be determined by the position you are attempting to fill.
The REP provides a streamlined process for employers who:
- Access the TFWP regularly to fill positions in high-demand fields from the REP occupations list, and
- meet the highest standards for working and living conditions and worker protection.
Phase 1 REP occupations are:
- NOC 85100 Livestock laborers
- NOC 85101 Harvesting labourers
- NOC 84120 Specialized livestock workers and farm machinery operators
- NOC 85103 Nursery and greenhouse labourers
These occupations have been determined to be in high demand and to have a shortage of domestic labor.
Labor Market Assessment (LMIA)
A Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is a document that a Canadian employer may require before hiring a foreign worker. A positive LMIA will demonstrate the need for a foreign worker to fill the position. It will also demonstrate that no Canadian citizen or permanent resident is available for the position. A positive LMIA is also known as a confirmation letter. Once the LMIA is obtained by the employer, the worker can apply for a work permit.
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