After new pathways for permanent residency were announced on April 14, 2021, many temporary workers and students were excited to take such opportunities under such a new program. However, many questions still need to be answered by Immigration Canada. Some of those are as follows:
- What kind of systems would this new program be under? Similar to the current express entry system? Or similar to the grandparents and parents system where you have to get your “spot” out of 90,000 limited spaces? I recall that 24,000 notices of interest were registered within 7 minutes in January 2019 for the parents and grandparents program. I will be disappointed if new programs are another lottery program such as that.
- What happens if the English test is not available right now? Within 2 hours of the announcement, both CELPIP and IELTS websites crashed. Many people are still trying to get onto the website to get their registration done for their testing. In addition, for some parts of Canada, such tests are not even available within driving distance – I don’t know if I call 8 hours one-way a drivable distance. Or some provinces have province-wide stay-home order or quarantine required, which limit candidates to obtain such English test scores.
- Work experience needs to be defined more clearly. The only definition so far is (1) must be “work” defined under Immigration regulation and (2) work experience cannot be a self-employed experience. But what about co-op work experience? What about off-camps work experience or on-campus work experience, or work without work permit experience?
- Candidates must have temporary resident status in Canada. What about implied status? What about restored status or in the process of restoration?
- Candidates must be currently working in Canada. What if their employment is shut down due to COVID-19?
- What about candidates whose work permit is about to expire after May 6, 2021? Is there any transitional provision, such as bridge open work permit?
- How long may this program take to complete? Can candidates leave Canada for urgent and/or family reasons after making such applications? Is there a provision for their return if their temporary status is expired in the meantime? Does their temporary status need to be maintained in Canada throughout the processing time, regardless of where they are after their applications are filed?
In the next three weeks before May 6, 2021, I look forward to receiving answers for the above-noted questions and more and more clarity that requires deserved candidates to receive their hard-earned opportunity to become permanent residents in Canada.
In the meantime, those who are interested in participating in this new program should get their English test scores in order as soon as possible, along with all their required documents, such as their Canadian school credential, confirmation letter of employment and so on to prepare their starting date, being May 6, 2021.