Anakbayan-Canada Statement on Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) Review

“We can’t keep on relying on others winning, we need to change the game”
Anakbayan-Canada Statement on Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) Review

May 30, 2016
Reference: Ysh Cabana


Toronto Rally for Migrant Worker Rights May 30, 2016 (Photo by Pinky P.)


Migrant power on the rise/ Now’s the time to organize!
No more bosses, tricks & lies/ Give our children better lives!

We are children of migrants, students, intern labourers, youth advocates, the precariat, young blood, the new generation, the millennials who are inspired by the Canadian federal government’s move to review the Temporary Foreign Workers Program (TFWP).

We cannot continue to hold onto a permanent state laced with suspension and insecurity. We affirm the necessity for this change to be more inclusive by encouraging migrant workers to be heard and heeded. We acknowledge their contributions to the economy.

We believe that the best positive service to migrant workers is to respect their rights and dignity.  With potential federal changes from this review, the most vulnerable could also avail to integrate their work and life. To borrow the Prime Minister Trudeau’s words, “in order to be able to be in service of the country with all one’s very best”.

Within this context, we urge the government to make three specific changes: (1) to transition all work permits to open work permits (2) to remove the policy of cumulative four years working limit also known as ‘4 and 4’ rule and (3) to give status for all migrants in Canada now.

We value our relationships with them – the others – as, in any case, we are all migrants. Not only do we seek for policies that do not treat workers as mere commodities. We also strive for a labour system based on democratic principles of access and distribution, wherein if workers are good enough to work, then they absolutely have the right to stay.

We stand boldly with the working-class sector – unionized, unorganized, unemployed, underemployed and temporary – to conceive and to create institutions making a government of the people, by the people, and for the people a reality.

As a nation of immigrants, we deserve better than the current state of affairs.
Together, we have a critical job in shaping the future.
We need to change the game. Status Now!


The Canadian Federal Government is reviewing the Temporary Foreign Worker Program from May 11 to June 15, 2016. For more information visit the Coalition for Migrants Workers Rights Canada (CMWRC) website  



From Bill C-51 to Oplan Bayanihan: Stop militarisation at home and abroad

From Bill C-51 to Oplan Bayanihan: Stop militarisation at home and abroad

In Canada, there is a growing normalisation of military presence in civilian society. The Conservative government passed Bill C-51 in an attempt to take control under the disguise of the “Anti-terrorism Act”. This has allowed secret policing, increased spending on military and prisons while social programs that benefit poor and working class people are slashed off the budget.


In the Philippines, human rights defenders, political activists, peasants, and indigenous peoples communities are constantly harassed, disappeared, and murdered by state forces under a culture of impunity.

Recently, the spate of Lumad* killings demonstrates the particular anti-people policy of President BS Aquino through the Oplan Bayanihan. This worsening human right violations only proves Aquino’s indictment and conviction as guilty found by the grassroots International People’s Tribunal last July 2015.

*Background: (see Manilakbayan ng Mindanaohere, here, here and Info sheet – Stop Lumad Killings campaign)

On September 4 we enjoin you and your organisation for holding action against militarisation of Indigenous communities in Mindanao. We protest and call for justice for Dionel Campos, Emerito Samarca, and Aurelio Sinzo!
Campos is the chairperson of the Malahutayong Pakigbisog Alang sa Sumusunod (Mapasu), an organization of the Lumad national minority in Lianga town of Surigao del Sur province;


while Samarca is executive director of the Alternative Learning Center for Agriculture and Livelihood Development (Alcadev), an alternative Lumad school.

We urge the community to take action against the culture of impunity in the Philippines.


  1. Immediate pull-out of the 36th Infantry Battalion in Lumad communities in Lianga, Surigao del Sur
  2. Immediate dismantling of paramilitary groups such as the Magahat/Bagani Forces
  3. Immediate formation of an independent fact-finding and investigation team composed of representatives from human rights groups, the Church, local government, and the Commission on Human Rights to look into these incidents of human rights violations; and, to arrest and prosecute the perpetrators.
  4. To observe the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and all the major Human Rights instruments that the Philippine government is a party and signatory to.
  5. End Oplan Bayanihan

 stop militarization


  1. Hold a protest in front of Philippine consulates to demand justice for the killings of Emerito Samarca, Dionel Campos and Aurelio Sinzo
  2. Hold a candle light vigil to express our solidarity with our lumad brothers and sisters
  3. Contact the following authoritiesby phone or send mass emails sample:“My name is _____, I am calling to express my outrage at the killing of community leaders in ALCADEV, Surigao Del Sur. We demand the pull out of Philippine military out of the indigenous schools and communities.”

Sen. Tobias C. Enverga Jr. (
Tel.: +1 (613) 943-1945  or 1-800-267-7362
Fax.: +1 (613) 943-1938

Philippine Embassy in Ottawa (
Amb. Petronila P. Garcia
Tel.: +1 (613) 233-1121
Fax.: +1 (613) 233-4165

Philippine Consulate in Toronto (
Tel.: (416) 922.7181
Fax.: (416) 922.2638

  1. Take a selfie or group picture and post on social media

Take a picture of yourself or a group with this sample message and use the hashtags #SaveOurSchools #EndImpunity #ActivismIsNotACrime