The Canadian government made the announcement of a program offering a citizenship option to undocumented construction workers.
According to The Star, Ottawa has unveiled a new program that will offer both an immigration pathway for undocumented construction workers in Greater Toronto and help to address a labour shortage in the city.
However, Telemundo has reported reported that Canada’s attempt is to attract the types of workers rejected by the United States because of the strict immigration policy of US President Donad Trump.
Hassan Yussuff told Telemundo “It’s a very small project for us but a very important project to initiate.” Yussuff is the head of the pilot program in Ottawa, and works for the Canadian Labour Congress, which will pre-screen and refer qualified candidates.
One of the goals will be to offer the option of citizenship to 500 workers and their families, who in some cases have more than five years living in the country. The publication explains that Ontario, will need some 26,100 more construction workers in the next 10 years, according to a study. Canada has also launched other programs to attract workers in the technology sector.
Another aspect that The Star highlights is that last January Parliament announced a plan to grant permanent residence to more than one million immigrants during the next three years and the majority would be workers.
The reunification of families, will amount to 100 thousand a year and about 60 thousand refugees a year are also sought. Two years ago, Canada admitted 286, 479 permanent residents, most of them workers. “Increasingly, talented international professionals choose other destinations instead of the United States,” said Marketa Lindt, president of the American Association of Migration Lawyers.