This blog post provides an overview of immigration news updates from Weber Immigration Consultants for the first half of December. We prepared a review of recent developments related to Canadian immigration policies and procedures. Do not forget to follow us on social media for regular updates.
The Government of Canada plans to alter the existing points-based selection system
To alleviate the current labor and skills shortage in Canada, the Canadian Government is upgrading its points-based selection system for Express Entry Programs. The modified process will be rolled out next year to ensure Canada’s immigration policy remains agile and conducive to economic growth. Although it is not sure how exactly these new tools will alter the system, they are being crafted with a specific eye toward areas suffering from extreme shortages, such as the healthcare and construction industries.
The present selection system makes Canadian employers struggle to fill vacant positions, allowing individuals who do not possess the required education level or necessary abilities to get hired for jobs. As a result, many qualified applicants go overlooked and underutilized in their professions. The Government of Canada is committed to creating an efficient immigration environment that works for everyone – employers, workers and immigrants. The changes to the points-based selection system are a step in this direction. By ensuring access to qualified candidates, the new system will help Canadian employers to find the right people for their jobs while providing immigrants with an opportunity to use their skills in a way that benefits Canada as a whole.
Express Entry candidates are worried about glitches in the system
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s (IRCC) introduction of the National Occupation Classification (NOC) 2021 sparked outrage from potential candidates due to significant Express Entry glitches. Notably, following the November 23 draw, some applicants reported not receiving an invitation even though their Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score was above the cut-off point. Moreover, some applicants received CRS points to which they were not entitled and, in certain instances, some were not given the appropriate allocation of points. Additionally, one candidate was considered qualified for the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) despite lacking the necessary work experience in Canada.
Since the introduction of NOC 2021, numerous specialists agree that Express Entry has been experiencing increasing technical issues. IRCC has corroborated this fact by acknowledging disruptions within the Express Entry system. Regrettably, these difficulties also reached Provincial Nominee Program applicants. IRCC is actively working on solving the existing issues and searching for solutions. However, when a resolution may be available or what problems lie at its core remain unknown. Therefore, IRCC suggests that candidates should regularly check the official website to stay updated as new information arises.
More foreign workers will be eligible to bring their families to Canada
On December 2, 2022, IRCC revealed that Canada is granting work permits to family members of temporary foreign workers. Starting January 2023, Canada will introduce a two-year temporary measure that will expand the eligibility to work in Canada to spouses and working-age children of workers at any skill level. It is estimated that this policy will allow over 200,000 family members of foreign workers to begin working in Canada and provide employers with additional labor resources.
Until now, spouses were only eligible for a work permit if the principal applicant held a high-skill occupation. However, this temporary policy is intended to encourage family unity and minimize stress levels by providing emotional support through physical and mental health as well as financial stability. This way, workers will be able to better adjust to their workplace and environment. The regulation will be gradually implemented, starting with the Temporary Foreign Worker Program’s (TFWP) high-wage stream and International Mobility Program. Then, the measure will be expanded to the TFWP’s low-wage stream and family members of agricultural workers. As a result, Canada has seen a remarkable increase in work permits issued in the first ten months of 2022 — a staggering 4-fold jump from 163,000 last year to over 645,000 this year.
Canada may start holding targeted Express Entry draws as soon as March 2023
In spring 2023, the Canadian Government will launch Express Entry’s targeted draws to promote sustainable economic development and growth. Through this initiative, IRCC seeks to select individuals who bring unique talents and expertise that can contribute significantly towards long-term prosperity in Canada. By offering such flexibility, the government intends to better align their decisions with changing economic trends and goals set by various departments. As the Canadian Government works with provincial and territorial allies to gain input from key participants, the classifications and groupings for Express Entry draws will continuously evolve.
While no formal categories have been established yet, draws could be centred around qualities such as language proficiency, educational background, or work experience in particular occupations. Canada’s Immigration Minister Sean Fraser has frequently highlighted that these comprehensive selection processes will also be regionally targeted. In June of 2022, the Canadian Government passed Bill C-19, which featured Express Entry draws more tailored to specific economic goals. This was a significant shift since IRCC was previously limited to adjusting the CRS score and conducting program-specific draws. With this new legislation passing, candidates can now be distinguished and invited for immigration based on certain economic objectives.
Canada is expected to double the number of parents and grandparents in 2022
Canada is making tremendous strides in reuniting families, with a projected 28,667 permanent residents welcomed through the Parents and Grandparents Program (PGP) by the end of 2022 – more than double last year. In the first nine months of this year, the PGP has enabled an impressive 21,500 relatives to move closer to their families in Canada – a remarkable 144.2% increase from last year’s total of 11,740. This means that over 16,927 additional parents and grandparents were able to reunite with their loved ones this year alone.
The PGP has become a much sought-after option for foreign nationals who wish to reunite with family members already living in Canada. In 2015, the number of permanent residents joining their children and grandchildren was 15,490; four years later, this figure had climbed significantly to 22,010 – an impressive 30% increase! The PGP allows sponsors to bring their blood-related or adopted parents and grandparents into Canada. Moreover, if any of them have gone through divorce or separation, their spouses or common-law partners may be eligible. In addition, sponsors’ half brothers and sisters qualifying as dependent children are included in this group. If you also want to bring your loved ones to Canada, Weber Immigration can help you navigate the confusing PGP eligibility criteria and provide quality advice regarding your application.
Ontario invited more Francophone skilled workers
On December 13, the provincial Government of Ontario held the 6th round of invitations in Ontario’s Express Entry French-Speaking Skilled Worker (FSSW) stream of the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) and invited 160 Francophone candidates working in 35 occupations. To be eligible for this draw, all invited candidates had pending applications under the Federal Express Entry system, one year of full-time work experience under NOC occupation level 0, A or B (TEERs 0-3), Bachelor, Masters, or PhD degree, at least CLB level 7 in French and CLB 6 in English, and an intention to settle in Ontario. The OINP invited 1,559 candidates under the FSSW stream in 2022.
The Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program’s French-Speaking Skilled Worker Stream is a unique opportunity to facilitate the migration of French speakers wishing to live in Ontario. With more than 500,000 Franco-Ontarians already residing here, this stream offers additional 600 CRS points and an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for immigrants with both English and French proficiency. Make your dream of living in Canada come true by registering for the OINP program. Weber Immigration is here to help you every step of the way with our experienced team of licensed professionals. Contact us today to learn more!
Canada will recognize the credentials of more immigrant healthcare workers
Canada is in dire need of healthcare professionals, like doctors, nurses, paramedics and therapists. A recent Statistics Canada study revealed that despite having the qualifications to work as medical personnel, many newcomers are unemployed or working below their skill level in non-medical jobs which do not even require a high school diploma. In response to this critical shortage, the Canadian Government is taking steps to recognize more immigrant healthcare workers.
The initiative will include transparent and efficient processes for assessing foreign credentials and recognizing them in Canada. This means that professionals trained outside the country can now have their qualifications evaluated more quickly to begin practicing in Canada. On December 5, Canada’s Immigration Minister Sean Fraser announced the upcoming investment of up to $90 million into initiatives to help foreign-educated immigrants receive their credential recognition. The minister launched a call for proposals, and each project could be awarded between $500,000 and $10 million in funding.
Weber Immigration Consultants provides knowledgeable, experienced, professional assistance with Canadian immigration applications. Our consultants specialize in every area of Canadian immigration, including spousal and parents sponsorship, temporary residence visas, permanent residence programs, study permits and work permits. We provide comprehensive services throughout the application process to ensure your application is handled smoothly. Do not hesitate to contact us today to discuss your situation.