Dear Blaine Calkins and Editor for Rimbey Review
I am writing to both of you, as I am a little confused.
I wrote an email to Blaine on January 19 when my ESL students, (the Cuban cooks) phoned to inform me that they were not going to come for their lesson that evening as they had problems with their papers and were leaving. Blaine’s assistant replied to my email on the January 22 and I returned with more correspondence, so how can Blaine have been unaware of this situation until the paper came out? Does the assistant not allow Blaine to read an email that was addressed to him?
Two of the wives were in the process of jumping through all the hoops required for the provincial nomination program, and my students were studying hard to challenge the Red Seal Cook Exams. My own knowledge of cooking terms was expanding rapidly.
I had no idea how the temporary foreign workers program works, nor the provincial nomination program, and seldom watch the news, so the article which can be found at http://www.edmontonjournal.com/touch/story.html?id=10310578 escaped my notice.
Having read this article, and heard on the radio about the American and Cuban governments consulting, I can fully understand how these decent hardworking people would rush to get into the States before the rules there were changed too. The article states quite plainly that there are far more applicants applying for permanent status than places per year, and that it takes longer to process the applications than the length of their work permits.
If the Cubans had stayed until the end of their permits, and the States had changed their rules, then their only option at the end of their stay would have been to return to Cuba, which was not at all what they wanted to do.
I believe very strongly that the current temporary foreign workers should have been grandfathered under the old rules. Instead of the Cubans having to figure out how they can qualify to return, they should be given a huge apology for the anguish which they have suffered from this treatment, and an invitation to immigrate.