(Sept. 9/14) In a presentation to the Alberta Conservative Caucus, Restaurants Canada put forth recommendations that would help our Alberta members handle the growing labour shortage. Our presentation, “Labour Shortage Threatens Industry Growth and Employment,” focused on the challenges of the new Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) rules and the need for foreign workers. Our recommendations included:
- develop a national labour strategy;
- develop a permanent federal immigration stream for lower-skilled workers or significantly increase Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) nominations;
- provide exemptions to the new 10 per cent and six per cent TFWP rules where a demonstrated need exists;*
- increase minimum TFWP work permit length to two years;
- include total compensation (gratuities, bonuses, meals, transportation, etc.), not just hourly wage, in median wage calculation;
- increase new Federal Skilled Trades Program cap for cooks from 100 to at least 500; and
- reduce the $1,000 Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) fee and provide reimbursement for rejected applications, as the fee is too high for most small businesses.
* The new rules state that temporary foreign workers (TFWs) can only make up a maximum of 10 per cent of a business’s workforce by 2016, and only regions with an unemployment rate of six per cent or less can apply for TFWs.
For more information on the presentation, contact Restaurants Canada’s Western Canada Vice President Mark von Schellwitz.
Restaurants Canada members: Download the presentation.
Top photo: Restaurants Canada’s Mark von Schellwitz with Minister of State (Western Economic Diversification) Michelle Rempel at the Alberta Conservative Caucus meeting on Sept. 4, 2014.