Will I need Canadian experience when applying to jobs as a foreign-trained worker?

Will I need Canadian experience when applying to jobs as a foreign-trained worker?

As more workers from all over the world immigrate to Canada, the fairness of requiring Canadian experience has become questioned. Canadian education and training in Canada have always been perceived as superior to an education procured elsewhere. This mindset has been at issue, especially as jobs have been in the process of going global due to the regulation of remote work and the continuing influx of foreign workers in Canada. Employers, now more than ever, can hire on a more global scale and diversify the knowledge of their teams.

Employers have previously prioritized “Canadian experience” as a qualification when hiring new workers. Canadian experience is defined as necessitating experience working in Canada for professionals who have acquired their skills in a foreign country. Foreign-trained workers are accountants, lawyers, engineers, doctors, etc. that have learned their profession in a country other than Canada. These workers may have had years of schooling and training, but if recently immigrated to Canada, would have been perceived as less proficient than Canadian-trained workers.

Beginning December 1, 2023, Canadian experience as a quality for regulating professions will no longer be legally reasonable. Bill 27, Working for Workers Act, 2021, has modified the Fair Access to Regulated Professions and Compulsory Trades Act, 2006. This act now declares, with minimal exception, the disallowance of “Canadian experience” as an essential quality for regulating professions in Canada.

The occupations that may nonetheless require Canadian experience are those involving health and safety. Professions that may still require Canadian experience must be established by the Minister. It is possible, however, for a regulated profession to file an application to the Minister requesting to be exempt from this new provision.

Those who would like to file an application to the Minister must include relevant documentation and evidence that they must be exempt from the new provision on the grounds of health and safety. Their application will be revised by the Fairness Commissioner, and they will advise the Minster on their judgement to exempt the profession. The Minister will then review the application and the opinion of the Fairness Commissioner to conclude whether the exemption should be permitted. The Minister may permit temporary exemption while they reach their conclusion.

If you are a foreign-trained worker wanting to know your rights when applying to Canadian jobs, please contact KCY at LAW by filling in an online consultation request or contact us by phone at 905-639-0999 to book your consultation today.