Filipina Caregiver Denied PR Status Because Daughter in Philippines Has Intellectual Disability

Having a child with intellectual disability could deny an applicant for Canadian permanent residence.

A Filipina caregiver in Toronto has been denied permanent residency status by Immigration Canada because of the very same reason.

According to MetroNews, Josarie Danieles, who has not seen her two daughters since she left the Philippines six years ago, is distraught.

“I felt like I was dying. I was so desperate I was crying,” she said, as she recalled the time and effort she spent trying to make the family reunification possible.

“For me Canada is my promised land,” she said.

Josarie confessed she didn’t even know her 13-year-old daughter Precious Ann Margarett Danieles had that health condition. She was told her daughter’s health would cost government about $55,000 over five years. The normal threshold is over $6,000 per year.

“If I go back, I don’t have a future,” she said. “Whether she has this disease or not, I think my daughter should come here.”

Sadly, her case is far from isolated.

In 2015, the Toronto Caregiver Action Centre had identified at least 25 similar cases where applications for permanent residence of longtime caregivers were denied due to health issues of a family member.

With the government poised to overhaul its temporary foreign workers scheme, migrant worker advocates are calling for changes so these caregivers will be reunited with their families. They would
like to see improved working conditions for caregivers, better regulation of caregiver recruitment laws to avoid illegal fees, and the end of discrimination against applicants whose family members have disabilities.

Groups added that granting caregivers full recognition of permanent residency status upon arrival would prevent exploitation and eliminate discrimination.

“They are recruited to support our families, our elders, our sick, but they’re being denied (the right) to stay,” said Fay Faraday, a Toronto immigration lawyer who has overseen a number of migrant workers.