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The Canadian Foundation for the Americas (FOCAL) is no longer in operation. This website documents FOCAL's activities and accomplishments throughout its existence. Thank you for your interest in the work of FOCAL.

Policy Paper: Gaining Perspective on Low-Skill Temporary Labour Migration in Canada

Jenna Hennebry
August 2011

A migrant worker picks swiss chard in a field in Canada.In Canada, growing numbers of temporary migrant workers are entering lower-skilled occupations across a variety of sectors beyond agriculture. As the traditional influx of workers from Mexico and the Caribbean expands to include new countries of origin such as Guatemala, El Salvador, Thailand and the Philippines, it is vital that researchers and policy-makers deepen their understanding of the role of labour migration in the Canadian economy over the long term as well as its consequences for human rights and social cohesion. This paper draws on over a decade of research on temporary labour migration in Canada involving qualitative interviews with migrant workers, non-governmental and governmental representatives, representatives from international organizations and sending countries, as well as the use of a new and unique web-based research tool developed by FOCAL’s Mapping Migration from the Americas project that enables transnational and comparative analyses of labour migration flows in Canada.



A View of the Hemisphere



Explore the link between governance and development.