Pinoy caregivers struggle to advance in careers in Canada

By Veronica Silva, ABS-CBN Canada
Filipino migrant groups in Ontario are working with two Toronto-based universities to study how Pinoy live-in caregivers are transitioning after completing the Live-In Caregiver Program (LCP).

The LCP is a federal government program that allows Temporary Foreign Workers to seek permanent residency, and eventually citizenship.

Preliminary results of the study revealed that Filipino caregivers in Canada are struggling to advance in their careers, as many of them stick to caregiving-related jobs even after the program.

The year-long study covered former caregivers from major Canada cities where many of them are based. These cities include the Greater Toronto Area, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa, and Vancouver.

“Karamihan sa mga miyembro naming nag-stay talaga sila sa live-in caregiver, but yung iba nagli-live-out na from their employer kasi may papel na sila, but still under sa position na yun or condition na yun. Yung iba, maintenance sa mga companies, like a hotel, and yet it’s still domestic work,” said Fiel Salazar, a caregiver and member of the group Pinay Quebec in Montreal.

With more than 600 respondents, statistical data from the study revealed that 48% of respondents are still doing caregiving jobs even after they have moved out of their live-in caregiving jobs.

The respondents said they are currently working in childcare as nannies, daycare workers, babysitters.

Fifty-two percent of respondents, meanwhile, took some form of training, with personal support worker as the most common training.

While the study results are still in preliminary stages, the research team is excited about the results as they prepare to draft policy recommendations based on data gathered.

“Ang gusto namin ngayon is to draft recommendations for both governments – Philippine and Canadian – to review their policies, and we will contribute findings of this survey and focus groups to them so that they have basis with which to review their policies,” said Pet Cleto of Gabriela Ontario.

The research team will present the statistical data to another group of former live-in caregivers in other cities to be able to come up with analyses of data results.

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