The 4 & 4 rule
The â€œ4 and 4 ruleâ€ is one of the many recent regulatory changes that are causing workers to have to leave Canada or become undocumented if they remain here and work. In this factsheet released earlier this year, you can find some more information on this new rule, how it applies to workers and what recourse workers have who are trying to regularize their status.
Your rights while working undocumented
Independently of the â€œ4 & 4 ruleâ€, some people might decide to stay in Canada past their work permit expiry date, and be left without status in Canada. But being undocumented does not mean they have no labour protections. In fact, provincial labour protections apply to ALL workers, regardless of immigration status, although exercising labour rights as an undocumented worker might be difficult. If you know any workers in that situation, share this fact sheet with them on Your Rights While Working Undocumented by the Workers Action Centre, a member of the Migrant Workers Alliance for Change. Undocumented workers can reach out to the Workers Action Centre or a community legal clinic in your community area if they want help filing a claim under provincial labour legislation.
Having access to health services is often one of the biggest worries that undocumented workers and families have. Community Health Centres, for example, can see patients without OHIP within their catchment areas. You can find your nearest CHC here, make sure to call first to find out what their protocols are when dealing with undocumented residents. Also, most Toronto Public Health Services should be completely accessible for undocumented residents. An organization called Health 4 All has created this comprehensive list of health service providers for the uninsured in the Toronto area.
Undocumented peopleâ€™s rights as tenants
In Ontario, everyone who pays rent, included undocumented people, is protected by tenant rights legislation. The website of the Federation of Metro Tenantsâ€™ Association has information on provincial tenant rights in 23 different languages.