Court certifies suit by Filipino and other temporary workers against Mac’s store chain

  • Page Views 1876
  • A B.C. Supreme Court has certified a class-action suit filed by temporary foreign workers against Mac’s Convenience Stores and a number of immigration companies in Surrey.

    The class suit was filed by Filipino and other temporary foreign workers recruited from Dubai.

    The workers claimed that they paid recruitment fees and were promised jobs in Canada.

    However, when they arrived in Canada, there were no hobs waiting for them.

    In addition to Mac’s Convenience Stores, the class-action suit was also filed against these immigration firms: Overseas Immigration Services Inc., Overseas Career and Consulting Services Ltd. (OCCS), and Trident Immigration Services Ltd.

    The workers said that they received contracts to work at Mac’s stores in B.C., Alberta, the Northwest Territories, and Saskatchewan.

    “This is a disturbing case of how low income workers spent their life savings to try to find a better life in Canada through a job at Mac’s Convenience Stores but instead found they had lost their money and most had no employment,” said lawyer Carmela Allevato, who represents the workers.

    Allevato, who is based in Vancouver, said that some of the works went back to Dubai, and some to the Philippines.

    Lawyer Susanna Quail, who is also helping the migrant workers, said there may have been up to 450 workers who were brought to Canada.

    Natalie Drolet, executive director and staff lawyer with West Coast Domestic Workers’ Association, said cases like this send a strong message to employers.

    The lawsuit has yet to be tried in court. The claims have yet to be proven in trial.

    The notice of claim was filed by the workers in  December 2015.

    Hundreds of migrant workers claimed they paid more than $8,000 for convenience store jobs which didn’t exist.

    The notice of claim was filed with the B.C. Supreme Court. It alleges that from December 2009 onwards, the workers were recruited in Dubai to work at Mac’s stores in B.C., Alberta, the Northwest Territories and Saskatchewan under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program.

    When the workers arrived in Canada, they found the more than 425 jobs they had been contracted did not exist.

    The immigration firms named in the suit are based in Surrey, B.C.

    The firms allegedly charged the workers an illegal $8,000 recruitment fee and made them pay their own transportation to Canada.

    Under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, migrant workers are issued a permit linked to the employment contract offered by their new employer.

    If the worker’s job role, location, or employer changes, their work permit becomes invalid.

    Mac’s Convenience Stores Ltd., which began as Mac’s Milk in 1962, now has about 800 stores across Canada.

    B.C. Supreme Court Justice Arne Silverman issued the decision dated September 18, 2017 certifying the lawsuit.

    “Shortly after arriving in Canada, each of the [representative plaintiffs] learned that there was no job for them at Mac’s,” Silverman wrote in his ruling.

    The workers allege that as many as 450 people, mostly from from Nepal and the Philippines, had similar experiences when they were recruited by consultants in Dubai.

    In the decision, Justice Silverman wrote that the defendants “deny wrongdoing on their own behalf, and deny any responsibility for whatever wrongdoings, if any, that any of the other defendants may have committed”.

    Mac’s Convenience Stores claimed that it contracted with OCCS in 2012 to recruit temporary foreign workers. However, the company said that it did not authorize the collection of fees.

    Mac’s also claimed that it understood that any payments made by the workers were for helping them navigate the Canadian immigration system.

    The immigration companies have denied charging fees. They also said that most of the workers retained OCCS for “immigration and settlement services”.

     

    Share

    New Posts Recently publish post More

    • 14 October 2021
      6 days ago No comment

      3 Steps to getting your BC Vaccine Card

      Related

    • 14 October 2021
      6 days ago No comment

      Maria Ressa’s Nobel Peace Prize is an international Rebuke of the Duterte Regime

      The Malaya Movement in Canada congratulates Maria Ressa as co-recipient of the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize. In its announcement, the Nobel Committee cited Ms. Ressa’s efforts to safeguard freedom of expression, which is a precondition for democracy and lasting peace. Ms Ressa …[is] receiving the Peace Prize for [her] ...

    • 14 October 2021
      6 days ago No comment

      Fil-Cans unite, launch Vancouver, BC 4 LENI 2022

      As the Philippine presidential election draws closer and closer, groups are getting together to support the candidate they feel must become the next president of the country. Filipino-Canadians from all over British Columbia’s Lower Mainland gathered together at the King George Grill Hub in Surrey to gather support for ...

    • 07 October 2021
      2 weeks ago No comment

      The Miracle Wedding of the Year

      Many of the most great love stories are tragic ones. On this extraordinary pandemic times and on what they went through the couple Laura and Brian you’ll expect it to end with the same way. But to everyone’s joy, it didn’t have the tragic ending like the romance of ...

    • 07 October 2021
      2 weeks ago No comment

      Jane de Leon excited and quite nervous  to meet director Chito Roño

      I hope to be able to meet his expectations of me,” said Jane de Leon, lead star of “Darna: The TV Series,” her reaction to the news that highly acclaimed director Chito Roño would be officially taking the helm in the much-awaited TV adaptation of the country’s iconic superheroine. ...

    %d bloggers like this: