Canadian Immigration News

IRCC Prioritizing 6000 Foreign Caregiver Applications for PR

3.25 minute read
"Given the immense contribution of foreign caregiver professionals in Canada’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the government body of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has decided to commit to prioritizing over 6,000 foreign caregiver applicants for permanent residence by the end of this year in acknowledgment of their hard work and dedication towards saving Canadian lives."
Written by My Visa Source Team
Published on:  Jun 2, 2021
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Given the immense contribution of foreign caregiver professionals in Canada’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the government body of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has decided to commit to prioritizing over 6,000 foreign caregiver applicants for permanent residence by the end of this year in acknowledgment of their hard work and dedication towards saving Canadian lives. 

The IRCC also committed to making first-stage decisions on approx. 1,500 Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker Pilot Program applications by June 30, 2021. 

Why Were These Decisions Prioritized by the IRCC?

Last year, Canada announced its immigration levels target for 2021-23 to invite over 401,000 new immigrants every year. However, given the ongoing global pandemic and the imposed travel restrictions to control the spread of the deadly virus, it has become increasingly difficult to invite new immigrants from overseas. Therefore, the IRCC is planning to encourage the maximum number of transitions from temporary residence to permanent residence. Targeting caregivers is part of that plan. This way Canada can acknowledge their importance by offering them better work opportunities and permanent residence for them and their families in Canada. 

While the IRCC is still in the process of digitizing various immigration programs to replace paper-based applications, the government body has assured that applicants to the caregiver programs will receive their acknowledgment receipt letters by May 31, 2021. This temporary policy took effect on May 3, 2021. Applicants who applied for the Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker Pilot Program in 2020 will not be required to reapply. 

The IRCC will also prioritize new applications for caregiver work permits to be issued to applicants who have a valid offer of employment from a Canadian employer.

What Are the Available Immigration Pathways for Foreign Caregivers?

Currently, there are 2 active immigration pathways for foreign caregivers: the Home Child Care Provider Pilot and the Home Support Worker Pilot. Up until April 8, 2021, the IRCC has already approved around 2,367 applications for the Home Child Care Provider Pilot. This represents around 87% of the applicants from the total visa cap for this program in 2021. For the Home Support Worker Pilot, the IRCC has accepted around 516 applications, representing almost 19% of the total visa cap for this program.

Foreign caregivers who are currently residing in Canada can apply for these pilot programs if they have at least 2 years of Canadian work experience in occupations classified as National Occupational Classification (NOC) code 4411 or 4412. Since these pilot programs only accept paper-based applications, they were disrupted more in comparison to other programs and experienced a huge backlog in applications in 2020 due to the pandemic.

The IRCC planned to accept a total of 2,750 applications from these pilot programs in 2021. However, a new temporary public policy change will now allow them to process the maximum number of applications received in 2020 with no regard to the visa cap. It is estimated that the IRCC received close to 12,000 applications for these caregiver programs, most of which should be processed by the end of this year.

What Are the Alternative Immigration Pathways Available for Foreign Caregivers?

Canada has recently launched 6 new immigration pathways for temporary foreign workers and international graduates in healthcare and other essential occupations on May 6, 2021. These immigration pathways include:

Foreign caregivers can opt for the PR Pathway for Temporary Workers in Healthcare Occupations. This stream will be open between May 6, 2021, till November 5, 2021, and will invite a total of 20,000 healthcare workers for permanent residence. If they are fluent in the French language, they can apply for the PR Pathway for French-speaking Temporary Workers in Healthcare Occupations which has no such visa cap.

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