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Migrant workers need open work permits and permanent immigration status on arrival.CUPE welcomes and supports the Coalition for Migrant Worker Rights – Canada,” said CUPE National President Paul Moist. Successive governments in this country have catered to the demands of large multinational corporations who want limits on work permits and restrictions on Labour Market Impact Assessments (LMIA’s) for migrant workers rather than providing migrant workers with rights and protection.

Over the last year, migrant worker groups from Alberta, British Columbia, Ontario, PEI and Quebec have been talking and meeting with each other to lay the ground for creating a unified voice for migrant worker rights across the country. The Coalition for Migrant Worker Rights - Canada (CMWRC), is the first of its kind in Canada www.migrantrights.ca.

“In times of austerity, workers are used by employers to divide the workplace and to pit better paid unionized workers against other workers. Migrant workers face discrimination, harassment and exploitation and are forced to accept less pay because they do not have permanent residence status,” said Moist. Migrant workers are vulnerable to employers who want to pay workers less and want to get rid of unions.

“We look forward to working in solidarity with the CMWRC to realize genuine rights recognition for migrant workers in Canada, and embrace the opportunity to support their 100-day campaign to get the new Federal government to commit to ending tied work permits in Canada, an initiative referred to as MoVE (Mobility, Voice & Equality for Migrant Workers),” said Moist.

CUPE supports the current campaign calls for:

  • Regulatory changes to make it easier for migrant workers to move between jobs improving working and living conditions for Canadian born and migrant workers.


  • Transition from tied permits to open work permits or sector-specific permits;
  • Remove limits on work permits and restrictions on Labour Market Impact Assessments including time-limits (4 and 4) to support migrant workers and good employers.
    • A pragmatic and thoughtful transition to permanent residency Immigration status on arrival for migrant workers.

“We stand in solidarity with workers who come to Canada from all over the world in search of a better life for their children and we support all efforts to ensure these workers are given the permanent immigration status they deserve,” said Moist. 

Learn more: www.migrantrights.ca

Sign the petition: www.migrantrights.ca/en/take-action