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Negotiating Two-Step Migration and Experiencing Precarious Legal Status in Manitoba

Date and time

2016.09.18, 11:45 AM to 11:45 AM


Jill Bucklashuk, University of Guelph

Based within a provincial policy context that supports temporary migrants' transitions to permanent
residency through the Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program, this presentation examines how the
promise of permanent settlement and experiences with a two-step immigration process influences
migration decisions and the lived experiences that follow. Even though transitions to permanency
for temporary migrants is a positive step toward reducing their vulnerabilities and precariousness, I
argue that such two-step immigration processes are not a panacea for the ills of the Temporary
Foreign Worker Program. The promise of eventually obtaining permanent residency can compound
temporary migrants' vulnerabilities by placing even more power in the hands of employers as it is a
process that rests upon the decisions and favourable supports of those who hire migrants. In this
relationship, migrant employees may be disciplined through the threat of deportation or failure to
support residency applications. In addition, migrants will do what is needed to gain the favour of
their employers and be seen as good, productive, and worthy workers. Using qualitative interview
data from twenty-six migrants working in Manitoba's hog processing industry, this presentation
demonstrates a need to re-think the temporary-permanent divide as the phenomenon of
transitioning legal statuses upsets the notion of temporariness. It supports calls for secure paths to permanent residency for all temporary migrants, but also provides evidence that suggests a need to
be cautious and critical when supporting two-step immigration processes.




Honouring the Scholarship of Kerry Preibisch Conference


University of Guelph Arboretum





File Attachments

Economic sectors

Labourers in food, beverage and associated products processing

Target groups

Policymakers and Researchers

Geographical focuses

Manitoba and National relevance