Re: “Boomers needed,” Jan. 24:
The ‘Boomers needed’ article stated that there was ‘a serious labour shortage in Canada’ and that retirees were being encouraged to stay in the workforce for a longer time. I thought: What of the many qualified immigrants who are present in this land ‘filled with many opportunities’ but many times have to resort to factory or survival jobs or in some instances return to their homelands, broke and frustrated?
The news at the end of that same week spoke of the long waiting times patients were experiencing at the local hospitals and walk-in clinics due to the shortage of doctors and nurses. Again I thought of the many qualified Indian, West Indian and European doctors who were driving taxis or some other position like that.
Whilst I recognize that Canada has its own licensing requirements for these professions and others, the fact is that many of these persons are very well trained and respected in their homelands.
I wish to make a proposal. If the government decided to implement a type of co-op or apprenticeship program, where doctors, nurses and such professionals could be allowed to work in hospitals and walk-in clinics under the supervision of the Canadian licensed professionals, this would firstly ease the labour shortage, reduce the waiting times and provide an income and experience for the new immigrants.
Another suggestion is that the government offer companies that employ a number of immigrants tax breaks for a limited period.