20 July 2006
Canadian construction industry lobbies for immigration changes
The Ottawa Business Journal is reporting that Canada's construction industry is urging the Harper government to make it easier for foreign construction workers to enter and work in Canada
The Canadian Construction Association says the industry is facing unprecedented demand for labour, and will need an estimated 41,000 new workers to meet demand between now and 2010.
In a letter to the Prime Minister, the CCA suggests:
- a proactive immigration policy that targets individuals with needed skills and expedites their entry
- revising the points system to put greater emphasis on experience and arranged employment in the skills required
- expanding the temporary worker program to include construction trades
- establish a program similar to the seasonal farm worker program for the construction sector
- resolving the issue of undocumented workers without resorting to deportation.
"Although aggressive efforts by all industry players must continue in order to recruit Canadians to the construction industry, the fact remains that immigration policy must play a bigger role in meeting future labour demand," CCA president Michael Atkinson said in a statement.
The association is also urging provincial and territorial leaders to discuss the issue of targeted immigration reform for the construction sector at their meeting later this month.
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