Two weeks ago I sent a letter to the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour asking her to consider further modifications to the temporary foreign worker program to meet the unique needs in Alberta. You can read the text of the letter below.
Dear Minister Mihychuk,
I was pleased to see the federal government take steps to modify the temporary foreign worker program to better meet the needs of seasonal industries on our east coast.
Since arriving at the Senate, I have been a strong advocate for the federal government to make changes to the temporary foreign worker program that reflects the unique needs of appropriate industries across Canada.
As an elected Senator from my province I want share with you that despite the dramatic change in the Alberta economy, there are still industries that are in critical need of temporary foreign workers. In Alberta, businesses like feedlots and meat processing plants face a constant struggle to find enough workers. This has been an ongoing problem for years, and the temporary foreign worker program was considered a major asset to the productivity of these businesses.
Hiring enough workers is also problematic for those in Alberta’s important tourism sector. Many hotels, stores and restaurants throughout Alberta have been hurt by the stricter rules affecting temporary foreign workers.
I ask you to meet with members of the Alberta Cattle Feeders Association, members of the Alberta Food Processors Association, and members of the Travel Alberta Board to understand the circumstances facing these businesses and to consider further modifications to the temporary foreign worker program to assist Alberta’s businesses.
The Hon. Doug Black, Q.C.
Senator for Alberta
cc: Alberta Cattle Feeders Association
Alberta Food Processors Association
Travel Alberta Board of Directors