Philippine Asian News Today Vol 19 No 18 | Page 8

OPINION  PHILIPPINE ASIAN NEWS TODAY September 16 - 30, 2017 Tinig Migrante By E. Maestro Who are Prakash Basy- al, Arthur Cajes, Edlyn Tes- orero and Bishnu Khadka? They are the four for- eign workers who have start- ed a class action suit against Mac’s Convenience Stores and three immigration con- sultants: Overseas Immi- gration Services, Overseas Career and Consulting Ser- vices and Trident Immigration Services. The class action suit was certified by the BC Supreme Court last Sept 18, 2017, well over a year after the Notice of Application for Certification was filed by the workers in July 15, 2016. A class action is a law- suit in which a large group of people with common legal claims join together to bring one large claim.  The large group, about 450 workers, is represented by “representa- tive plaintiffs” and in this class action, these are the four for- eign workers: Prakash Basyal and Bishnu Khadka, both from Nepal, and Arthur Cajes and Edlyn Tesorero, both from the Philippines but working in Dubai. In this class action suit, the four workers allege that the immigration consultants collected from them large re- cruitment fees, roughly $8000 each to get legal employment from Mac’s Convenience Stores in Western Canada (BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Northwest Territories). Ac- cording to the Koskie Glavin Gordon law firm, “Mac’s then entered into employment contracts with the foreign workers. When the workers arrived in Canada, Mac’s re- fused or neglected to provide the work that was guaranteed in the employment contract.“ Simply put, the promised jobs did not exist. Many of those in the class action are Filipinos and were recruited in job fairs in Dubai, UAE to come to Cana- da. Some are living and work- ing in Calgary, Alberta and in Class Action Against Mac’s Convenience Stores Dubai,UAE. The class action is to help these workers harmed by Mac’s and the immigration consultants get the compen- sation for what happened to them. If you are a foreign work- er who, on or after December 11, 2009, made payments to Overseas Immigration Servic- es, Overseas Career and Con- sulting Services and Trident Immigration Services to work at Mac’s Convenience Stores in Western Canada under the TFW Program, please call 604.734.8001. Or send an email to ksmith@koskieglavin. com. Provide your name ad- dress and email address and your name will be added to the list of potential claimants and you will be notified of de- velopments in the case. The lawyers representing the class action are Charles Gordon and Kirby Smith of  Koskie Glavin Gordon  and Carmela Allevato and Susanna Quail of Allevato, Quail and Worth.  If this is your story, or you know someone who does, don’t waste time. Reach out to these lawyers. Multiple opportunities for public to provide input on City budget The City of Vancouver’s 2018-2022 Budget Outlook is ready to view online. There are multiple opportunities for the public to get involved in the engagement process for the City’s 2018 Budget and five-year financial plan. The 2018-2022 Budget Outlook helps provide context for the budget decisions the City needs to make, with the goal of making the best use of our resources to maintain services while responding to the expanding needs of our growing population. Focused on setting priorities and taking actions for a better city, the Outlook identifies the following priorities: *         Invest in renewing existing, and adding new, public facilities and infrastructure; *         Manage the challenges of rapid growth and affordability; and *         Focus on equity and creating a resilient, healthy and green community. The draft 2018 Budget and five-year financial plan will be available online in November. The budget will then be reviewed by City Council and the public before being approved on December 12. The public’s input on the 2018 Budget will influence decisions about how tax dollars are spent. The following opportunities are available to provide your input (check the City web site for more details and any updates). *         Online survey available from September 27 to October 13. *         In-person Budget Roadshows will be held at the following dates and times at the locations listed below: Monday, October 9 -       Outside on northwest corner of 4th and Vine (near Safeway/Whole Foods),  9-11 am -       Save-On-Foods (3535 West 41st Avenue), Noon-2 pm -       Britannia Breezeway (1661 Napier Street), 3-5 pm Wednesday, October 18 -       Trout Lake Community Centre (3360 Victoria Drive), 8-10 am -       Collingwood Neighbourhood House (5288 Joyce Street), 11 am-1 pm -       Killarney Community Centre (6250 WWW.PHILIPPINEASIANNEWSTODAY.COM Killarney Street), 2-4 pm Thursday, October 19 -       Mount Pleasant Neighbourhood House (800 East Broadway), 9-11 am -       Creeksi