Nurses have always been at the forefront of change in public health and on the frontlines whenever a major health crisis reaches our communities. But despite a global pandemic that highlights their importance, alarm bells are sounding about another major public health crisis: Hospitals simply do not have enough nurses. In Canada, many internationally educated nurses from the Philippines who could be helping out are prevented from doing so due to immigration restrictions.
In an interview with Alec Regino, sociologist Naomi Lightman discusses why Filipino healthcare workers have been systematically undervalued and what that means for the healthcare sector as a whole. Lightman is a professor at the University of Calgary with research interests in immigration, social inequality, and care work.