The federal election today on Monday, September 20, 2021 will determine the future of the Canadian immigration system for the next 4 years. The federal government will oversee all the major decisions impacting the immigration system. Therefore, whoever wins the federal election will shape the future of immigration in the country.
Despite the Constitution of Canada stating that immigration is a shared jurisdiction between federal and provincial governments, with the federal government having the final decision, it is the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) that controls major immigration policy decisions. The IRCC is controlled by the ruling political party that runs the federal government.
It is the IRCC that decides the immigration levels for all provinces and territories. The IRCC also determines the processing times for all immigration visa categories and is by far the provider of settlement and integration services to newcomer immigrants.
How Will the Federal Election of 2021 Impact the Canadian Immigration System?
Since the IRCC is controlled by the current federal government that will be run by whichever political party wins the upcoming election, it is going to be very impactful. Every political party leaves a lasting impression on the Canadian immigration system by the way of the policy decisions they make based on their different ideologies and public expectations.
Until the federal election is complete, the IRCC and the provincial and territorial governments will continue their normal operations under the existing immigration policies. What will not happen during the election is that no new immigration policy decisions will be made until the new government takes control and provides further guidance.
It usually takes up to 1-2 months for the newly elected government to select its cabinet and make other important appointments. That way the transition of power occurs between the previous and the new governments. Once this is complete, the new Prime Minister will send a letter of mandate to the newly appointed ministers, including the immigration minister. This letter of the mandate will highlight the priorities of the government.
Note, these priorities will give shape to future policy decisions regarding Canadian immigration.