I’m sure a lot of you know about the citizenship and immigration changes that came about as a result of the last government’s policy amendments. There are tons of people out there who came to Canada as international students just like myself, and are now seeing the repercussions of Harper’s decisions. The federal election was a few months ago, I was really happy that Justin won after the last guy flipped the script on us. The easy pathway to citizenship after completing your program in Canada attracted the majority of International students here. Most of them paying triple the fees of their Canadian counterparts. Harper made the process less favorable to the international students and even took away residency time credits for them. So all the years spent in school now have no standing in the new citizenship process.
The new point system enacted as a result of the policy changes has deterred away from the traditional Canadian experience class route previously available to students who completed their studies here. This not only makes it more difficult for the students to gain their permanent resident status, but also puts the country at a disadvantage because all those years of training are potentially lost if these students are forced to return home and can’t use those skills to add to and enrich the economy.
The Bill C-24 is another topic I won’t bother addressing in this post as I’m sure that played a part in Stephen Harper’s change in address last fall. The Liberal Government promised reforms in immigration that will restore the identity of Canada as a World leader in immigration.
Here are some of the proposed reforms by the Trudeau lead Government:
- Double the number of immigration applications allowed for parents and grand-parents sponsorship from 5,000 to 10,000 visas per year.
- Increase points allocation to applicants who have siblings in Canada on their Express Entry application
- Restore the Canadian Citizenship residency time credit for international students in Canada.
- Double the budget for processing family class immigration applications to reduce wait times.
- Repealing the unfair sections of Bill C-24.
Trudeau appointed John McCallum as the Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Refugees . He has always been vocal about the need for Canada to contribute more in the effort to making family reunification quicker and simpler. McCallum also clashed with former Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Chris Alexander, on matters pertaining to economic immigration, refugee settlement, and Canadian citizenship. It’s fair to assume this guy will make things happen due to the differing perspectives on these issues. Although there are a lot of other pressing matters on the table, we will like to know how the Liberal Government intends to fulfill their promises related to Immigration reform. It would be nice if the Government stays engaged and communicates with the people in the same manner they displayed while campaigning so we don’t feel left out.
Live long and prosper