Interim Federal Health Program Restored

Posted by admin on Feb 19th, 2016

February 18, 2016—Ottawa, ON – All refugees and asylum claimants will soon benefit from full health-care coverage through a restored Interim Federal Health Program, the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, John McCallum, announced today.

Starting April 1, 2016, the Interim Federal Health Program will provide health-care coverage for all eligible beneficiaries – including basic, supplemental, and prescription drug coverage. Similar to provincial/territorial health-care insurance, the coverage will include hospital and physician services. Coverage for supplemental health-care services, such as vision and urgent dental care, and for prescription drugs, will be similar to what the provinces and territories provide to Canadians who receive social assistance.

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Doctor and medical student interrupt Minister Joe Oliver at press conference

Posted by admin on Jul 1st, 2012

New immigrants are hidden homeless

Posted by admin on Apr 4th, 2012

April 2, Toronto Star

Anthony Rozario can smile about his subsidized apartment now, but the Bangladeshi father and his wife used to share a small Scarborough apartment with three adult children. At times, they also shared their already crowded dwelling with other families, converting available space into bedrooms. Space was tight but so was their budget, with their $900-a-month rent eating up half the family’s monthly income. Up until February, Rosario and his wife, Mary, were still sharing their two-bedroom apartment with his son, daughter-in-law and two grandchildren. “It’s tough to live with so many people in so little space, but you are bound to live like this when you don’t have money,” said Rosario, 61, a bakery chef, who two months ago finally moved into a subsidized seniors’ apartment after four years on the waiting list. But a new study on immigrant housing warns that thousands of newcomers continue to live in “hidden homelessness” — in shared, overcrowded housing — an issue that has grown more acute, especially in Toronto, where affordable rental units are in short supply.

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Super Visa applications for visitors to Canada are often rejected

Posted by admin on Mar 14th, 2012

Toronto Star. Published On Wed Mar 14 2012 Nicholas Keung Immigration Reporter

Caught up in the immigration backlog to sponsor her mom and dad to Canada permanently, Emma Canizales was thrilled to learn of Ottawa’s new visa to facilitate her parents’ visits. The so-called Super Visa allows eligible individuals to travel in and out of Canada to visit their family here over a 10-year period — with up to two years for each stay — while their sponsorship applications are processed.

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Workers call for tougher labour laws to end wage theft

Posted by admin on Sep 5th, 2011

Laurie Monsebraaten, The Star, 5 Sep. 2011

Kelsang had been out of work for two months and was desperate when she accepted a job last February at Babaz, a west-end Toronto fast-food restaurant that specializes in Middle Eastern food. She agreed to work for $10 an hour chopping vegetables, making falafels and operating the cash, even though she knew she would be earning less than Ontario’s $10.25 minimum wage. But the Tibetan immigrant who has lived and worked in Canada for more than a decade was shocked when her first pay was delivered to her in cash — without any paperwork showing payroll deductions — and amounted to just $450. She was owed at least $700.

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Canadian immigrants getting fleeced by money transfer services: ACORN

Posted by admin on Jul 27th, 2011

By Ben Christopher July 27, 2011 11:57 am,

Canadian residents who use commercial money transfer services to send funds to family members back home are paying unreasonably high fees, says a non-profit that represents low-income families. According to ACORN Canada spokesperson Pascal Apuwa, fees levied on international money transfers can be as high as 20 to 25 per cent. “We are demanding that these agencies reduce their charges and we are asking the government to regulate them,” says Apuwa.

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Caregiver sues former employer, claiming $162,000 in lost wages

Posted by admin on May 29th, 2011

Laurie Monsebraaten, Toronto Star, May 29 2011

At 21, Lilliane Namukasa left Uganda to make a new life in Canada as a live-in caregiver for two small children. But after working full-time for two years, she was paid just $2,100 by her Brampton employer and then fired without cause, forcing her into a homeless shelter, Namukasa says in a claim filed in Ontario Superior Court. This is despite an employment contract that entitled Namukasa to receive approximately $22,000 a year, before taxes, minus $2,860 for room and board, she says in the claim.

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Waive immigrant fees, court rules

Posted by admin on May 12th, 2011

Adrian Humphreys, National Post, May 12 2011

[for decision, go to]

The Federal Court of Appeal has opened the doors to indigent immigrants by forcing the government to consider requests to waive application fees from would-be immigrants who claim they can’t afford to pay. The case challenges a long-held tenet that immigration requires an economic component to help stimulate the Canadian economy rather than deplete social assistance.

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Many low-wage workers not being paid at all: report

Posted by admin on May 12th, 2011

By Laurie Monsebraaten, Toronto Star, May 12 2011

About one in three low-wage workers in Ontario is a victim of “wage theft,” according to a report being released at Queen’s Park on Thursday. The report, based on a survey of 520 casual, temporary and non-standard workers in the Greater Toronto Area and Windsor, is among the first attempts in Canada to document how often vulnerable workers go unpaid or suffer other violations of employment standards.

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Federal MP Ruby Dhalla charged by her nanny

Posted by admin on Apr 20th, 2011

Published On Wed Apr 20 2011, MIKE CASSESE/REUTERS Dale Brazao Staff Reporter

The high-profile case involving Liberal MP Ruby Dhalla and a former nanny who alleged abuse in the family household is on hold until after the election. The case was adjourned to June 9 after Dhalla’s lawyer, Michael Mazzuca, argued that the Brampton MP and her family were working round the clock trying to get her re-elected. Mazzuca said Ruby Dhalla, her mother Tavinder and her brother Neil couldn’t come to court and instruct him on how to proceed with their motion against their former nanny, who claimed she was exploited while working for the family at their Mississauga home three years ago.

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