January 13, 2017 – A key figure in the Canadian Meat Council says changes made to the Express Entry System will harm the industry.
Ron Davidson, director of media relations at the council, described the changes as drastic and says they will make it more difficult to retain skilled butchers and cutters.
He added that the rural meat processing industry, which already struggles to fill positions because Canadians do not want the jobs available, will be further suffocated by the changes
As part of changes announced in November, the number of points available for a qualified job offer in the class of job under which butchery falls was reduced from 600 to 50.
Under New Express Entry Rules:
- Applicants with an LMIA for employment as a senior manager (NOC 00) described under the National Occupational Code, will receive 200 points.
- Applicants with an LMIA for employment under all other occupations described under the National Occupational Code, will receive 50 points.
- Applicants working in Canada for at least 1-year under an employer specific work permit backed by an existing LMIA or providing significant benefit to Canada (Intra-Company Transferee); NAFTA or other international agreement; with a managerial skill level position (NOC OO), will receive 200 points.
- Applicants working in Canada for at least 1-year under an employer specific work permit backed by an existing LMIA or providing significant benefit (Intra-Company Transferee) or NAFTA or other international agreement; with a skill level position O, A, B under the National Occupational Code; Skilled Trade (NOC B), will receive 50 points.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada made the move to reduce the importance of a job offer under the Comprehensive Ranking System, because it wanted to attract more people with qualifications it says are better-suited to long-term labour market success.
The result is that only a nomination under one of the provincial programs now scores 600 CRS points. Some 200 are awarded for a management job offer and 50 for other jobs. Meanwhile, further points were added for those with a Canadian education.
Meanwhile, the meat processing industry should benefit from the abolishment of the four-in, four-out rule under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP).
Previously, a worker who had been in Canada for four years under TFWP without transitioning to permanent residence was not allowed back into the country for another four years.
The federal government recently moved to abolish this rule, meaning temporary workers can continuing renewing work permits for as long as they want, and as long as they are needed.
Scrapping the rule is in line with Standing Committee recommendations made in September 2016 after a summer spent studying the TFWP. More changes are expected in early 2017.
So, while it may be true that it is more difficult for meat processing staff to gain permanent residency, it has been made easier for them to keep their temporary residence status.
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