Labrador foreign workers worried about fate of family

A temporary worker at Tim Hortons in Happy Valley-Goose Bay said he's been saving money to bring his family from the Philippines to live in Labrador, but the suspension of the temporary foreign workers program has possibly stopped his dream.
Temporary foreign workers make up 40 per cent of the staff at the Happy Valley-Goose Bay Tim Hortons alone. They're all worried about their futures if the program's suspension isn't lifted. (CBC)

Ottawa's suspension of the temporary foreign workers program last week has impacted people across Canada, with some workers wondering if they're on their last days in the country.

John Joseph Garcia, a temporary worker at Tim Hortons in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, said he's been saving money to bring his family from the Philippines to live in Labrador.

Now, Garcia said it seems like he might be the one who's forced to move.

He's been working the overnight shift at the local coffee shop for two years, hoping to bring his wife and newborn daughter to Canada.
John Joseph Garcia, from the Philippines, says he's been working to save money to bring his wife and daughter over to Canada. With his work visa set to expire next month, he may be the one forced to move. (CBC)

Garcia's work visa expires next month, and with the suspension of the temporary worker program, it can't be extended.

"I thought I could bring them here but now it's … I think it's the end, no more," said Garcia.

"It sounds crazy — I can't believe that this happened."

At the Happy Valley-Goose Bay Tim Hortons alone, 40 per cent of the staff are temporary foreign workers who will be forced to leave Canada if the suspension isn't lifted.

Garcia said everyone working behind the counter with him has their fingers crossed.

"I'll just leave it all to God, that's all I can say. He has a plan maybe, God has a plan for me and my family," said Garcia.

"I'm not blaming anyone. I don't blame the government, I don't blame the employers — it just happened."

He said the work is the same as it always was, but dreads thinking his next two paychecks may be his last.

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