October 1 licensing deadline for recruiters of foreign workers

RECRUITERS of foreign workers to British Columbia are reminded of the October 1, 2019, deadline to become licensed – a requirement under the Temporary Foreign Worker Protection Act introduced in 2018, the B.C. Ministry of Labour announced on Monday.

Information about recruiters who have already received their licence is publicly available online. This searchable registry allows employers and foreign nationals to know which recruiters are licensed and in good standing.

This licensing requirement ensures better protections to workers new to Canada. This includes people entering under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, who may be more vulnerable to abuse in the workplace.

Foreign-worker recruiters must be licensed in B.C., even if their business or main operations are located outside of the province. A licence is for an individual recruiter, not for a company or business. There is no fee for the licence. However, recruiters must submit a security bond of $20,000 that will be held in trust.

Recruiters who operate without a licence or contravene the Temporary Foreign Worker Protection Act in other ways could face penalties of up to $50,000, be imprisoned for up to one year or both.

The Province said it is committed to better protect vulnerable workers, while ensuring B.C. remains a competitive jurisdiction for businesses that rely on temporary foreign workers. The new licence requirement helps level the playing field for these businesses by eliminating unfair and abusive recruiting practices.

For more information or to apply for a licence, visit: 

https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/employment-business/employment-standards-advice/employment-standards/hiring/hire-temporary-foreign-workers

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