Can exotic dancers get a work permit in Canada?
Canada is a magnet for temporary foreign workers (TFW). However, the government of Canada does not welcome every TFW. They mainly focus on the labour market to make sure they are protecting Canadians. Nonetheless, they may have other reasons for refusing a work permit. For example, the employer has been noncompliant, or the worker may remain in Canada without authorization. What about erotic dancers? Can exotic dancers get a work permit in Canada? My area of expertise is immigration. Therefore, I only focus on the immigration regulations governing this matter.
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A 2012 CBC news article reads, “Exotic dancer no longer eligible job for foreign workers.” However, I could not rely on a news piece, so I looked at the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR). The earliest changes to IRPR reflecting such prohibition appear on a Dec 31, 2013, version. The government has made some amendments to the relevant sections. So, I post the latest updates here. According to paragraph 203(2)(a) of IRPR:
The Department of Employment and Social Development must provide the assessment referred to in subsection (1) on the request of an officer or an employer or group of employers, none of whom is an employer who, on a regular basis, offers striptease, erotic dance, escort services or erotic massages.
In other words, this group of employers may not hire anyone from outside Canada. Therefore, they may not even hire an accountant, let alone an exotic dancer. Moreover, subsection 196.1(a) emphasizes that foreign nationals must not approach these employers:
A foreign national must not enter into an employment agreement, or extend the term of an employment agreement, with an employer who, on a regular basis, offers striptease, erotic dance, escort services or erotic massages.
Consequently, the government prohibits both the employer and the TFW exotic dancers from signing employment agreements.
Paragraph 200(3)(g.1) of IRPR advises the officers not to issue work permits for exotic dancers and similar positions. Moreover, it prohibits work permits for anyone who wishes to work for the adult industry.
An officer shall not issue a work permit to a foreign national if the foreign national intends to work for an employer who, on a regular basis, offers striptease, erotic dance, escort services or erotic massages.
Again this rule does not cover exotic dancers only. It covers anyone who wishes to work for this group of employers.
Temporary residents in Canada may receive permits at the port of entry or while in Canada. Examples include work permits, study permits, visitor records, and temporary resident permits. However, following paragraph 183(1)(b.1) of IRPR, you may see the following condition on these documents. As you can see, even the permits emphasize that TFW exotic dancers cannot work in Canada.
Condition: Not valid for employment in businesses related to the sex trade such as trip clubs, massage parlours or escort services
While there is no solution for hiring TFW exotic dancers, we could help you in other areas of visa and immigration. Consequently, please book a consultation session with me, or fill out our assessment form. Of course, if you are facing a problem, you may fill out the following form.
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Would you please fill out our free assessment form if you wish to visit or move to Canada? We will review it for free, but we will contact you only if we find an opportunity for you. Alternatively, you may book a consultation session. Consultation sessions are not free, but you will receive formal immigration advice from a licensed practitioner.
Al Parsai, LLM, MA, DTM, RCIC
Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant
Adjunct Professor – Queen’s University – Faculty of Law
Ashton College Instructor – Immigration Consulting
Author – 88 Tips on Immigration to Canada
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This article provides information of a general nature only. Considering the fluid nature of the immigration world, it may no longer be current. Of course, the item does not give legal advice. Therefore, do not rely on it as legal advice or immigration advice. Consequently, no one could hold us accountable for the content of these articles. Of course, if you have specific legal questions, you must consult a lawyer. Alternatively, if you are looking for immigration advice, book an appointment.
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