United Conservative candidates have been under a microscope over the past year and vetting practices have been called into question multiple times. Even so, previous “bozo eruptions” pale in comparison to a recent allegation. Raging against a since-deleted slight on social media is nothing but fodder for idle gossip compared to allegations of human trafficking. 

Yes; human trafficking. 

When people hear about human trafficking, they often think of young girls and women being forced into a sex trade. They don’t typically think of business owners, especially Canadian business owners, abusing workers through a government program. 

Over the weekend, a copy of an email alleging abuse through the Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) program was published on social media. The allegations were leveled against Devinder Toor, United Conservative candidate for Calgary-Falconridge. This was accompanied another post that linked to a local sport website which had an article titled “Calgary Stint a Living Hell” from 2015 in which a man who had recently returned to Fiji claimed he and others had been abused under the TFW program by UCP Calgary – East candidate Peter Singh. The article states Singh denied the allegations.

A UCP spokesperson issued a statement claiming the Party had conducted an investigation into the claim against Mr. Toor. The statement said they could not verify the allegations adding Mr. Toor had neither been sanctioned nor contacted by provincial or federal authorities regarding the program.

An Alberta business owner was the first sanctioned by the federal government for abuse of TFWs and only three Alberta businesses have ever been sanctioned. 

The allegations against Devinder Toor are serious. That the UCP would even consider attempting to verify the allegations themselves without notifying the proper authorities is not only arrogant but a grave disservice to the member of the public who brought it to their attention.  

This post contains both fact and opinion. 

Deirdre Mitchell-MacLean

dmaclean@countersign.ca

@Mitchell_AB @thisweekinAB

 


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