BC introduces temporary foreign worker registration

By Richmond Sentinel

Published 12:54 PDT, Mon September 21, 2020

Last Updated: 2:13 PDT, Wed May 12, 2021

Temporary foreign workers who come to BC to work will be better protected now that the employers who want to hire these workers will be required to register with the province as of Dec. 15.

Employers who wish to hire foreign nationals through three federal programs—the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, the Home Child-Care Provider Pilot or the Home Support Worker Pilot—have until Dec. 15 to register with the provincial government. There is no fee for registering. The process takes 20 minutes to complete, on average.

“Our government is committed to ensuring that regardless of your immigration status, if you're working in BC, your rights and protections are the same as any worker,” said Labour Minister Harry Bains. “These important protections for vulnerable workers in our province are long overdue and will ensure they are not taken advantage of.”

BC has created the registration requirement to ensure fair working conditions for all workers in the province. This means people from abroad who come here are paid for the hours they work, have a job description that matches the work they perform and ensures their rights and safety are protected while on the job.

“Temporary foreign workers are integral to our agricultural sector and BC relies on them for important jobs like harvesting the crops we depend on for our daily meals and to build our province’s food security,” said Agriculture Minister Lana Popham. “The new registration requirement for employers will help ensure foreign workers are fairly treated.”

The registration requirement will allow the province to identify which employers hire temporary foreign workers and will enable inspection of those employers and enforcement of provincial law. Until now, there has not been a system that registers and certifies employers who hire workers from other countries.

This employer registry is the final step in implementing the Temporary Foreign Worker Protection Act, passed in fall 2018. Last year, BC established a licensing requirement for recruiters of foreign workers and launched the recruiter registry. Approximately 150 recruiters in BC are licensed and in good standing.

To learn more about the employer registry, click here.

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