September 22, 2015 Canada, Immigration, Sailing, Work, York River

Immigration Waters

If you think immigration reform is controversial in America, try Canada. Susan McBride Friesen is a lawyer/lobbyist for the Canadian mushroom industry, and she regaled us while sailing with her husband Larry and his brother and wife.

“Canada allows visiting immigrants to stay five years legally, and then they have to go back to their native country. It takes us three to five years to teach laborers how to properly and efficiently pick mushrooms. They’re very delicate and are easily bruised. As soon as the pickers get proficient, they’re practically deported. Yet no one who’s native to Canada wants to do that kind of farm work, so it has become a vicious circle. I’ve lobbied legislators hard and convinced them of our case, but they don’t act on it. It’s very frustrating.”

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