The Hand that Rocks the Cradle

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  • The Trudeau Liberal government never stops blindsiding Canadians. First, it was its callous support of legislation for many divisive and possibly damaging laws that involves the legalization of marijuana. Then, came the Canadian Summer Jobs, which requires applicants for federal funding of programs that give employment to young people to comply with pro-choice attestations. Now, it’s the Caregiver Program.

    According to the new rules, foreign caregivers will not be eligible for permanent residence if they have not accrued two years of employment by November 2019, according to a notice posted by the Immigration Department. The federal government is currently reviewing Canada’s two programs for foreign caregivers; one for those caring for children and the other for those caring for adults with high medical needs. Both programs were launched as five-year pilots, including a date that they expire. With a launch date of November 29, 2014, this means they will expire on November 29, 2019, according to Immigration Canada spokesperson Faith St. John. This means that nannies who come to Canada will have to complete 24 months of employment before that deadline in order to qualify for permanent residency. Those who come in after will not be eligible to apply and become Canadian citizens.

    Historically, caregiving work in Canada began in the 1600-1800s in New France when it enslaved Indigenous and African women to work as servants in homes. By the 1900s, women from England, Ireland and Finland were hired as nannies and governesses, and were immediately given permanent residence status upon arrival in Canada. A decade later, women from Guadalupe in the Caribbean were recruited to work temporarily in Canada, and deported when no longer needed. The same treatment was given to women from the British colonies until the 1980s when the Foreign Domestic Movement was instituted, and caregivers were able to apply for permanent residence after two years. In 2016, the 4-and-4 rule was repealed, but continued to demand for permanent landing status for migrant workers, much like it was for European women more than a hundred years ago. The new rule, however, will put an end to their hopes.

    It is quite ironic that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau can actually stomach this new rule. First of all, he himself had a number of Filipina nannies growing up, and now his own children have Filipina nannies. To not be able to sympathize with the plight of the very women who nurture and care for his family is arrogant and cold. While he sheds tears for a dying Canadian pop star whom he calls a “true Canadian hero”, he ignores the real “heroes” in his life – the caregivers who labour day and night to care for many Canadians, young and old who sacrifice not seeing their own families for years just to ensure that they can be given a better life in Canada someday. While he takes useless selfies and makes popular pronouncements  just to get tweeted for his candour, he never mentions the importance of the foreign workers who labour in homes, farms and other jobs Canadians do not want to take. Trudeau ignores their collective effort to keep Canadian homes and industries running, while thousands of Canadians born here refuse to sweat for a day’s wage, and prefer to wait in line for welfare.

    The Trudeau Liberal government’s cowardice to face issues by imposing laws, arrogantly ignoring protestations and calls against them  from every sector, then disappearing through the crowds,  is really sickening.  While the Prime Minister and his cohorts sip tea and have wonderful cucumber sandwiches, they completely disregard the fact that the cucumbers were grown and picked by foreign workers who are sent home after their contract is over; that their children and homes are kept well-cleaned and orderly by the foreign caregiver, and that the country’s industries and labour forces are run by immigrants who struggled hard to come to Canada, and yet cannot work in their properly trained fields of expertise unless they get through the tight ropes set by bureaucrats who worry about what they will tweet next. While Trudeau speaks of Canada as an embracing multicultural fabric, welcoming to everyone of every race, ethnicity and culture, his words do not seem to match his actions.

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