In Downtown Vancouver this Mother’s Day, migrant caregivers, advocates and foreign workers’ supporters held a flash mob dancing to Donna Summer’s hit song “She Works Hard For The Money” calling for permanent residency upon arrival. Many migrant women who are working and caring for Canadian families have been separated for a number of years from their own children on Mother’s Day.
Executive director of Migrant Workers Centre, Natalie Drolet explains “Today is Mother’s Day. It’s a day for us to really raise awareness about the fact that there are upwards of 30,000 migrants of caregivers working in Canada right now who are separated from their families on Mother’s Day. They have children in their countries of origin who don’t have their mothers with them to celebrate and that’s because of the Canadian immigration policy. We allow migrant workers to come in. We benefit from their services caring for Canadian families, children, the elderly, people with medical needs but we don’t allow their families to accompany them here.”
“And so today, we are calling on the Canadian government which is actually undergoing a review of the Caregiver Program to ensure that all caregivers have permanent residency on arrival and can bring their families with them in Canada.”
The current caregiver program is set to expire in November 2019.
The flash mob was organized by the Migrant Workers Centre, the Committee for Domestic Workers and Caregivers Rights, Migrante BC, the Filipino Workers Network and the Filipino Canadian Advocacy Network. It was choreographed by “Miss British Columbia 2016” Gloren Guelos, a daughter of a caregiver who migrated to Canada 10 years ago.
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