Ontario Immigration Act
On November 26, 2014, the Ontario Liberals re-introduced the Ontario Immigration Act (Bill 49). The Bill is now in its Second Reading.
While this legislation is framed as an â€˜Ontario Immigration Actâ€™, it provides no real rights, benefits or access to immigration status for low-waged migrant workers in Ontario. It does not free migrant workers from fees, or regulate unscrupulous recruiters. As it stands, the Ontario Immigration Act is designed to facilitate recruitment of high-waged migrants to Ontario in line with the new Federal Express Entry immigration system and develop provincial temporary immigration programs.
The Ontario Immigration Act is a missed opportunity for creating meaningful recruitment regulations in Ontario, and ignores best practices being developed in Manitoba, Saskatchewan and elsewhere.
As a first step, the Ontario Immigration Act must be transformed with a view to ending the practice of migrant workers paying fees to work in Ontario. Following that, comprehensive legislation is needed to ensure migrant workers have equal access to all social rights and protections.
Read our specific proposals for changes to the Ontario Immigration Act and migrant worker laws in Ontario by clicking here.