Many Filipino individuals who arrive in Canada with the intention of immigrating are citizens of the Philippines. As foreign citizens in a new country, they may initially find it challenging to navigate information about their legal rights and responsibilities as immigrants. This page aims to provide a brief overview of important information related to this matter.

Protecting and Promoting the Rigths of the Citisens of the Philippines

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Regardless of the purpose of your stay in Canada, until you acquire Canadian citizenship, you remain a citizen of the Philippines. 

Overseas Filipinos should be aware that there are branches of Philippine government departments present in Canada working to protect and promote the rights of Filipino citizens.

The following are the some of the active offices that would provide assistance with your stay in Canada:

Migrant Workes Office (MWO)
Name of the office Migrant Workers Office (MWO)
Department of the Philippine Government Department of Migrant Workers (DMW)
Location of the office (s) in Canada Vancouver, Toronto
Contact information Vancouver: 

Telephone no.: (+1) 604 641 1234

Hotline: (+1) 604 767 3354




Telephone no.: (+1) 416 975 8252
Hotline: (+1) 647 992 7656
Email: (labour concerns) (OWWA concerns)


  • The overseas operating arm of the DMW.
  • Tasked to protect the rights and promote the welfare of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).
  • Tasked to ensure that all Filipino temporary workers in Canada are covered by an employment contract whose terms and conditions are compliant with employment standards and laws of both Canada and the Philippines.
Service(s) available
  • Facilitate the verification of employment contracts.
  • Facilitate the Overseas Employment Contract (OEC) applications.


Embassy of the Philippines (PE), Philippine Consulate General (PCG)

Canadian Acts and Guidelines Pertaining to Work and Immigration

Working in Canada is closely associated with the process of immigration. When an overseas Filipino is in Canada initially as a Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW), the rights and responsibilities of a TFW might not be clear. It should be known that REGARDLESS of your work position or immigration status, Canadian laws protect their rights. If you are a TFW, you have the same rights and workplace protections as Canadians and permanent residents.

Your employer MUST Your employer CANNOT

  • give you information about your rights .
  • give you a signed copy of your employment agreement on OR before the first day of work.
  • pay you for your work as stated in your employment agreement. 
  • make reasonable efforts to provide you with a workplace free of abuse.
  • follow the employment and recruitment standards of the province or territory where you work.
  • get and pay for private health insurance that covers your emergency medical care until you're eligible for provincial or territorial health insurance coverage.
  • make reasonable efforts to give you access to health care services if you're injured or become ill at the workplace.


  • force you to perform unsafe work or work that your employment agreement doesn’t authorize you to do.
  • force you to work if you’re sick or injured.
  • pressure or force you to work overtime not included in your employment agreement.
  • punish you for reporting mistreatment, unsafe work, inadequate housing or for cooperating with an inspection by a government employee.
  • take your passport or work permit away from you deport you from Canada or change your immigration status.
  • make you reimburse recruitment-related fees they may have paid to hire you.

Reading materials

The following materials are listed to help you in understanding your rights and workplace protections available:

  • Immigration and Refugee Protection Act - A legal act respecting immigration to Canada and the granting of refugee protection to persons who are displaced, persecuted or in danger. 
  • Information on rights as a TFW under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program.
  • Information on rights as a TFW under the International Mobility Program.
  • Rights at Work - outlined by PCG Vancouver and MWO Vancouver.

Additional Information and Resources

  • How to report workplace abuse or risk of abuse?

If you are experiencing abuse, or knows someone who is experiencing abuse, please call the following: 

Contact Telephone no.
Service Canada’s tip line (+1) 866 602 9448

All calls are confidential and are taken seriously. Any call may lead to an investigation.

You will be able to talk to a Service Canada agent in one of more than hundreds of languages. 

  • How to report a workplace health or safety problem?

If you have encountered dangerous work conditions, experienced injuries or illness due to work, or faced other workplace health and safety issues, please reach out to your provincial or territorial workplace health and safety office.

The following are contact information for the provincial and territorial workplace health and safety offices:

Province/Territory Telephone no.
Alberta (+1) 866 415 8690
British Columbia (+1) 888 621 7233
Manitoba (+1) 855 957 7233
New Brunswick (+1) 800 222 9775
Newfoundland and Labrador (+1) 800 563 5471
Northwest Territories (+1) 800 661 0792
Nova Scotia (+1) 800 952 2687
Nunavut (+1) 877 404 4407
Ontario (+1) 877 202 0008
Prince Edward Island (+1) 800 237 5049
Quebec (+1) 844 838 0808
Saskatchewan (+1) 800 567 7233
Yukon (+1) 800 661 0443


  • How to report other employment problems

For other concerns regarding your employment, please contact your provincial or territorial employment standards office. 

The following are contact information for the provincial and territorial employment standards offices:


Province/Territory Telephone no.
Alberta (+1) 877 427 3731
British Columbia +1) 833 236 3700
Manitoba (+1) 800 821 4307
New Brunswick (+1) 888 452 2687
Newfoundland and Labrador (+1) 877 563 1063
Northwest Territories (+1) 888 700 5707
Nova Scotia (+1) 888 315 0110
Nunavut (+1) 877 806 8402
Ontario (+1) 800 531 5551
Prince Edward Island (+1) 800 333 4362
Quebec (+1) 800 265 1414
Saskatchewan (+1) 800 667 1783
Yukon (+1) 800 661 0408 ext. 5944


  • There are many support organizations for migrant workers. Kindly consult your own province’s official website as they might have a directory of organizations that will assist in your settlement and other needs.

Note: for example, Ontario has a directory of settlement agencies that help newcomers and refugees find the services they need to settle in Ontario.