October 24th, 2012

NDP calls for investigation into BC mine hiring

The NDP is today calling for the immediate suspension of temporary foreign worker (TFW) permits for a British Columbia coal mine and a full investigation into whether Canadian workers were given sufficient opportunity to apply for the jobs.

“We need to know whether Canadian workers had a fair shot here. With so many unemployed Canadians, it’s hard to believe that none are qualified for those jobs,” said Labour critic Alexandre Boulerice (Rosemont – La Petite-Patrie).

Two hundred Chinese nationals were hired to work at BC’s Murray River project. Representatives of the mining companies say there aren't enough Canadian workers with the skills and experience needed to work underground.

“The Conservatives should prioritize creating jobs for Canadians and ending abuse of the temporary foreign worker program,” added Immigration critic Jinny Sims (Newton – North Delta). “We need a thorough review of how the temporary foreign worker program was used in this case to ensure that Canadians and foreign workers’ rights are being upheld.”

New Democrats have criticized the Conservative government’s recent changes to the TFW program that will allow employers to pay TFWs 15% less than Canadians.