Refugee Healthcare Workers Can Now Apply For Permanent Residence
The Canadian government has announced that refugee claimants who work in the health-care sector and provide care to patients can now apply for permanent residence due to a special measure.
Health care workers have played a crucial role in Canadians’ lives this past year. Many of the health-care workers who have dedicated their time and efforts to supporting the country during a difficult and unpredictable health crisis are refugee claimants. For this reason, the government implemented the new measure, explained Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino, who made the announcement on December 14, 2020.
“Canadians are appreciative of asylum seekers and the work they are doing during the pandemic,” Minister Mendicino said. “Thanks to this special measure, we are recognizing their significant contribution by providing them with a more secure future in Canada.”
The program has been in development since this summer, and Minister Mendicino made an official announcement in August. Since then, two public policies have been created: one for refugees in Quebec, and one for refugees in other provinces.
Who Can Apply?
The application is open to health care workers who claimed asylum in Canada before the pandemic began.
Applicants must meet the following set of criteria:
- Pending or failed refugee claimant who claimed asylum before March 13, 2020
- Received a work permit after their claim was issued
- Must have the required work experience in Canada’s health-care sector
- The Applicant and Applicant’s family members must not be inadmissible to Canada
- Applicant must meet Quebec’s immigration and work experience requirements if they plan to live in Quebec.
Additionally, the government is recognizing spouses and common-law partners of refugee claimants who meet the eligibility requirements but have contracted and passed away from COVID-19.. These individuals can apply for permanent residence if they arrived in Canada before August 14, 2020.
What Else Should I Know About The Application Process?
Once an application is filed, its eligibility is considered by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IIRC). IRCC is accepting applications until August 31, 2021.
“We welcome these special measures for refugee claimants who have stepped up to serve our communities during these unprecedented times,” said the Honourable Arlene Dunn, who is New Brunswick’s Minister Responsible for Immigration, and the Provincial-Territorial Co-Chair of the Forum of Ministers Responsible for Immigration.
“Together with our federal, provincial and territorial colleagues, we strive to support newcomers to participate and succeed within a welcoming Canadian society.”