According to the Canadian Press, Public servants are walking out of the Lester B. Pearson building as part of a job action in Ottawa, Ont,

Prospective Canadian immigrants lived through an emotional roller-coaster  in 2013, when Foreign Service employees in Ottawa and other Canadian Missions walked out of their offices as a form of protest in an employee action, wreaking havoc on an already backlogged immigration system.

Letter from a concerned reader:

Please settle your differences soon. The only ones you are ALL hurting – are those wishing to emigrate to Canada, and above all others, Canadian citizens desperate to bring home their spouse or family members.

As it is now, your Manila backlog is 14 months. How many months or years will your actions add to our painful wait? I am extremely disappointed in my Government and it’s employees.

DO THE RIGHT THING and end this NOW. Whatever you gain from this, we will have lost financially and emotionally.

Because of this, immigration came to a screeching halt for some time, with spouses being separated, children unable to meet their parents, and whole families divided, creating a stressful situation for those who have already been waiting for months for their immigration process to prosper.

While employee action is a legal right, how many innocent people have to be hurt as a consequence of another’s protest?

Fortunately, Foreign Service employees returned to their desks and started working as hard as ever to get all paperwork processed in a timely manner, a fact that reflected positively on the increase of visa approvals this year.