Canada offers hope for undocumented workers

by Ivy Guevara, ABS-CBN News North America

Posted at Jul 04 2011 03:03 PM | Updated as of Jul 04 2011 11:03 PM

LOS ANGELES, California – Filipino nurses in the United States are now having trouble getting jobs and attaining legal status. But Canada is offering new hope for undocumented workers in the US.

One registered nurse in the US has lived in the country for almost 10 years. He has kept his status legal through a working visa and has earned a nursing degree.

But he was denied a permanent residency and is now worrying about his undocumented status.

“There’s this anxiety looming above me, that if I get caught, there’s a possibility of me going back home and losing everything I’ve worked for,” he said.

He lost his high-paying hospital job since losing his legal status last year. But he is still able to work for a company where his skills weigh more than anything else.

But his top priority is still to get his legal status back and once again work as a nurse.

He has other options – get married or apply for permanent residency in Canada.

Canadian immigration law says that undocumented status in the US will not affect one’s immigration in Canada. An applicant also does not need a relative or an employer in Canada to qualify as an immigrant.

But giving up on an American dream is not easy.

“I do hope that somewhere along the way, they would come up with a system that will grant legal status to this people. I think I worked hard enough to deserve my right to be here,” he added.

More hope for the undocumented immigrants will now come in the form of the recently introduced Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2011.

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