Canadian Manufacturing

Quebec wants exemption from moratorium on foreign workers

Province's immigration minister will ask to be excused as Quebec hasn't had problems with program

MONTREAL—Quebec’s immigration minister will make the case for lifting the ban on hiring temporary foreign workers in restaurants when she meets with her federal counterpart.

Kathleen Weil is set to meet with Chris Alexander, who will be in Montreal May 12 for an unrelated announcement.

Weil’s spokesperson Dave McMahon says Quebec will request an exemption to the moratorium because the province hasn’t any problems with the program.

He says many Quebec restaurants need temporary foreign workers to keep operating, especially during the busy summer period.

Ottawa announced the moratorium in late April after reports suggested the program was being abused by the food service industry.

A spokesperson for Employment Minister Jason Kenney, who oversees the program, says there are no immediate plans to lift the ban in Quebec or anywhere else.

The Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) has been a political albatross for the federal government in the past year due to claims of abuse by companies in a number of sectors.

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