TORONTO - Three years have passed since Justin Trudeau’s phalanx of trusted, experienced, agents of change promised to address the issue of severe labour shortages in various sectors of Canada’s (and Ontario’s) economy. Then, presto!
Valiant Peter Fonseca, MP from some forgotten riding in Mississauga, rushed into the breach (that would be the House of Commons, where the great debates of the day was eloquently in search of answers) to proer a solution to a pressing problem.
You see, - I paraphrase - Mr Fonseca, pointed out to his MP colleagues, there are tens – no, hundreds – of thousands of “undocumented workers” filling the labour shortage in our construction, transportation, mechanics, hospitality and restaurant sectors.
Note to readers: there are credible studies claiming the numbers of workers holding down a job, without the federally imposed paperwork, to be at a million plus. So, here’s what we should do, he suggested.
We’ll ask the Standing Committee on Human Resources to study the root causes (blame the Provincial governments’ inability to prepare labour for industry needs), take a comparative look at the Atlantic Pilot Project and propose actions for moving ahead. Bravo! General applause.
You see, Mr. Fonseca knows whereof he speaks! The Motion calls for action that has an uncanny similarity to the “Pilot Project” he and his caucus colleagues promoted shortly after the last election. In fact, as part of the “fact-checking”, after “dusting o” Press and Media interviews and videos of town hall meetings on the Pilot Project for undocumented workers in Ontario, one is smitten by the striking resemblance that the MPs and Minister of Immigration advocating its benefits have with Mr. Fonseca and Mr. Hussen. No, no. This must be dierent.
After all, it bears the stamp of an official Motion from the House of Commons instructing one of its Committees to prepare a Report whose recommendations will compel (maybe) the government to act in accordance with a plan its Ministers initially embraced and proposed. Still with us? Wonder what is going on?
The usually elusive Minister, caught unawares by a reporter for Nossa TV who asked for an opinion on the Pilot Project, responded by saying that he couldn’t answer because “there is litigation going on”. Oooops! What’s that about? Criminal? Civil? Personal or government? He was, ironically, in attendance at a Construction Unions Awards night ceremony.
The construction Industry is notorious for turning to “irregular workers” from overseas to fill its labour shortages on sites. Ever wonder why projects are so consistently behind schedule and run over budget?