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Primary Agriculture Exemptions

 Changes made to TFWP in June 2014 are outlined in the “Overhauling the Temporary Foreign Worker Program” .

On-farm primary agriculture, including SAWP, was able to remain exempt from many of the changes as primary agriculture have proven acute labour shortages and the unfilled jobs are usually truly temporary.

NOTE:

  1. View the TFWP website for detailed explanations.
  2. Significant changes and the agriculture exemptions are noted below.

LMIA Processing Fee

  • The cost of processing a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) application increased from $275 to $1,000 for every TFW position requested by an employer.

DIRECTIVE  for  On-Farm Primary Agriculture

  • The $1,000 LMIA processing fee does NOT apply to on-farm primary agriculture including those for (1) SAWP, (2) Agriculture Stream, (3) Stream for Lower-skilled Occupations, and (4) Stream for Higher-skilled Occupations

Advertising Requirements

  • The job advertisement changed and now must be posted for a minimum of 4 weeks (28 days) and:
  • Appear on the national Job Bank or its provincial/territorial counterpart in British Columbia, Saskatchewan, the Northwest Territories, Quebec or Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • Use 2 or more additional methods of recruitment / advertising site consistent with the normal practice for the occupation.

DIRECTIVE for On-Farm Primary Agriculture

  • The job advertisement must be posted for a minimum of 2 weeks (14 days) applies to on-farm primary agriculture including those for (1) SAWP, (2) Agriculture Stream, (3) Stream for Lower-skilled Occupations, and (4) Stream for Higher-skilled Occupations.
  • Appear on the national “Job Bank” or its provincial/territorial counterpart in British Columbia, Saskatchewan, the Northwest Territories, Quebec or Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • Use 1 or more additional methods of recruitment / advertising site consistent with the normal practice for the occupation, which may include the Provincial pork producer association website.

Cap on Low Wage Positions in Low Skilled

  • Employers offering a wage to a TFW that is below the provincial median hourly wage will be subject to a maximum 10% cap on the proportion of low-wage TFWs.  The cap will be phased in by 2016 providing employers time to transition to a Canadian workforce.

DIRECTIVE for On-Farm Primary Agriculture

  • The cap on low-wage positions is not applicable to employers who are hiring TFWs for positions related to on-farm primary agriculture such as: farm managers/supervisors and specialized livestock workers, general farm workers, nursery and greenhouse workers and harvesting labourers.

Transition Plans

  • Employers now must engage in and document activities to transition to a Canadian workforce and reduce their reliance on TFWs.

DIRECTIVE for On-Farm Primary Agriculture

  • The Transition Plan for low- and high-wage positions is not applicable to employers who are hiring TFWs for positions related to on-farm primary agriculture such as: farm managers/supervisors and specialized livestock workers, general farm workers, nursery and greenhouse workers and harvesting labourers.

1-year LMIA duration

  • Employers of low-wage temporary workers must reapply every year for an LMIA in the event labour conditions have changed.

DIRECTIVE for On-Farm Primary Agriculture

  • No changes have been introduced to workers for on-farm primary agriculture jobs.

Work Duration in Canada

  • The Government has announced a 2-year maximum work permit authorization for foreign workers in the low-wage stream of the TFWP.
  • The duration of work permits as set out in the LMIA will now be limited to a maximum of one-year for all low-wage positions rather than the 2-year duration that existed previously.

DIRECTIVE for On-Farm Primary Agriculture

  • The current policy on how long a foreign worker including on-farm primary agriculture workers can work in Canada before requiring a period of not work in Canada has not yet changed. A regulatory process is required and is not expected to be in place before mid-2015.
  • SAWP workers continue to be permitted a maximum work period duration of 8 months, between January 1 and December 15.

Language Restriction

  • With the new reforms English and French are the only languages that can be identified as a job requirement both in LMIA applications and in job advertisements by employers.

DIRECTIVE for On-Farm Primary Agriculture

  • The language restriction does not apply to higher-skilled positions related to on-farm primary agriculture such as farm managers/supervisors and specialized livestock workers (specifically National Occupational Classification (NOC) codes 8251, 8252, 8253, 8254 and 8256).

 

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