Caregivers urge government to consider their permanent residency

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Last Sunday, Mother’s Day, dozens of caregivers wore robot masks and held up signs that read #notarobot at Yonge-Dundas Square on Sunday to call on the government to give them permanent residency.

There are thousands of caregivers working in homes across Canada who are all hoping to bring over their families because they don’t like the separation.

The Mother’s Day protest demanded that caregivers be treated as human with full rights and advocated for similar treatment for members of their immediate family.

What they are really urging is that the government considers letting them immigrate with their families and become permanent residents from day one rather than to go through the process that could take years.

They want to be treated as immigrants who come in under the Federal Skilled Workers Program with their families. The only problem is that many of the caregivers do not qualify.

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Events like the one at Yonge-Dundas Square were also held in Edmonton and Vancouver, and caregiver organizations across the country are calling for steps to be taken to address the needs of those workers already in Canada and the caregivers that will continue to arrive until a new federal program for caregivers is in place.

In addition to open work permits, care workers are demanding the removal of the requirement of a one-year Canadian post-secondary education, removal of the English language test prior to permanent residency and removal of caps that allow only 2,750 permanent resident applications each year in each caregiving stream.

The problem with allowing caregivers to come in as permanent residents with their families would then create less of an incentive for them to even work as caretakers in the first place. Many caretakers abandon such work once their families come in and there is a fear that the whole idea of bringing in caretakers would be defeated.

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It remains to be seen what the immigration minister decides in the next coming months. A decision is expected to be announced by the time the federal elections comes around. – CINEWS

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