New task force to improve delays in immigration applications
The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, announced the creation of a new task force to improve government services, with a focus on reducing wait times. The task force will be a Committee of 10 Cabinet ministers. They will:
- review service delivery,
- identify gaps and areas for improvement, and
- drive action to improve the processing of passports and immigration applications.
“The delays in immigration application and passport processing are unacceptable,” says the Prime Minister’s news release. It also pointed out that the Government of Canada is urgently working to resolve this problem “as soon as possible”.
“We will continue to do everything we can to improve the delivery of these services in an efficient and timely manner, and this new task force will help guide the work of the government to better meet the changing needs of Canadians and continue to provide them with the high-quality services they need and deserve.”The Rt. Hon. Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada
It is important to mention that Canada is investing $85 million to reduce backlogs in the immigration system. The government acknowledged the pandemic dramatically slowed down the pace of processing applications. Therefore, it is now investing in resources to speed up the process of obtaining citizenship, reuniting families, and welcoming immigrants. The government is also planning to bring in 431,645 immigrants in 2022, the highest number in Canadian history.
Announcements for expiring PGWPs holders and Express Entry applicants
In April, the Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, announced that in July 2022, those with an expiring PGWP between January and December 2022 will qualify for an additional open work permit of up to 18 months. IRCC is working on a simplified process and will provide further details “in the weeks ahead”. You can read more about this in the following article:
- International graduates with an expiring PGWP in 2022 will qualify for an additional open work permit
The same day, the Minister announced that Express Entry draws under the federal high-skilled streams will also resume in early July. This includes the: Canadian experience class (CEC), federal skilled worker class (FSWP), and federal skilled trades class (FSTP). IRCC also noted that new applications under these streams will be processed within the 6-month service standard.
Other major changes
The following policy changes will take effect this summer (July):
- Applicants will no longer be required to remain in Canada throughout the entire time their application is being processed.
- Applicants who also apply for an open work permit while they wait for their permanent residence application to be processed will be able to get work permits that are valid until the end of 2024.
- To support family reunification, the immediate family members included in a principal applicant’s permanent residence application who are outside of Canada will be eligible to get their own open work permit.
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