In an era marked by global migration and the pursuit of inclusive societies, Canada has emerged as a trailblazer in implementing dynamic reunification reforms. Canada has positioned itself as a model for nations looking to reform their immigration laws due to its dedication to supporting diversity and building family togetherness.
As per the new Canada immigration levels plan 2023-2025, family class immigration is the second biggest category. In 2023, Canada is aiming to welcome 106,500 permanent residents under the family class category, including 78,000 spouses, partners, and children and 28,500 parents and grandparents.
Understanding Canada’s Previous Family Immigration Policies
Canada has a long history of family immigration policies that have shaped its approach to reunification and integration. Canada’s family immigration policies focused primarily on promoting family reunification and building a diverse society. The introduction of the Immigration Act of 1967 marked a significant shift in Canada’s approach by prioritizing immigrants’ skills and education over their country of origin. This policy change aimed to attract immigrants who could contribute to the country’s economic development while also allowing them to bring their immediate family members.
Under the 1967 Act, the family class sponsorship program was established, allowing Canadian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor their spouses, dependent children, parents, and grandparents for immigration to Canada. This program played a vital role in reuniting families and promoting a sense of belonging and stability for immigrants. Under the 1967 Act, the family class sponsorship program was established, allowing Canadian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor their spouses, dependent children, parents, and grandparents for immigration to Canada. This program played a vital role in reuniting families and promoting a sense of belonging and stability for immigrants.
Overview of the Reforms
It was announced that family members from visa-required countries who have submitted family class permanent residency applications can apply for Temporary Resident Visas (TRV) to join their sponsor in Canada. IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) has successfully eliminated the backlog of TRV applications for family members who already have a permanent residency application being processed. IRCC’s new approach towards spousal TRV applications has approved more than 98% of applications for spouses and their kids so that they can be with their families while they await the processing of their PR applications.
The IRCC is also starting a new program to assist recent family immigration to Canada in finding employment as quickly as possible so they can sustain themselves and their families. With the implementation of this new strategy, dependent spouses and children will be eligible for an open work visa regardless of where they apply for family sponsorship from within Canada or from abroad for the family. These open work permits were previously exclusively available to people who applied from within Canada.
What led to these family reunification reforms
The reforms and programs aimed at family reunification in Canada are based on various factors and considerations. Many factors have influenced these reforms, such as Social and Humanitarian Reasons as family reunification is considered a fundamental aspect of humanitarian and social policies. Canada recognizes the importance of keeping families together and values the emotional and social support provided by family members.
Cultural diversity and integration are other aspects as Canada is a diverse country with a multicultural society. Facilitating family reunification helps in promoting cultural diversity and integration by allowing individuals to maintain their familial and cultural ties. Economic contributions play a part as immigrants who reunite with their families often contribute positively to the Canadian economy. They can join the workforce, start businesses, and make significant economic contributions to their communities.
When it comes to long-term settlement and integration, family reunification is seen as a way to facilitate the long-term settlement and integration of newcomers. When individuals have the support and presence of their family members, they are more likely to successfully adapt to their new lives in Canada.
The Impact of Reduced Processing Times
Reduced processing times in family reunification programs can have a significant impact on individuals and families seeking to reunite in Canada. Going forward, it is said this new approach to processing TRV applications and Canada family reunification visas will lead to processing times of within 30 days. Family members will be able to travel to Canada more quickly and be with their loved ones sooner.
When family members are reunited in Canada, they can contribute to the country’s economy more quickly. They can join the workforce, start businesses, and actively participate in the labor market, bringing their skills, knowledge, and talents to contribute to the local economy. This can lead to increased economic growth and productivity. Family reunification fosters social cohesion within communities. When families are able to reunite quickly, they can participate in community activities, engage with local organizations, and contribute to the social fabric of Canadian society. This strengthens social bonds and promotes a sense of belonging for both newcomers and their sponsoring family members.
Overall, reduced processing times in family reunification programs have a positive impact on families, individuals, and the broader Canadian society. They facilitate timely reunification, enhance emotional well-being, contribute to the economy, support integration, and strengthen social cohesion. These factors are in line with Canada’s commitment to family unity, humanitarian values, and the long-term success of immigrants and their families.
Support for Sponsors: Enhanced Assistance from the Government
The government provides comprehensive guidelines and resources to sponsors, outlining the sponsorship process and requirements. These materials help sponsors understand their responsibilities, navigate the application process, and gather the necessary documentation. IRCC provides client support services, including telephone helplines and email support, where sponsors can seek clarification on sponsorship-related queries or issues. Trained representatives are available to assist sponsors and provide guidance throughout the process.
The government has been working on improving processing times for sponsorship applications. By reducing delays and expediting the processing of applications, sponsors can experience faster reunification with their family members. The processing time is 16 months for a Spouse or common-law partner living outside Canada, 14 months for a Spouse or common-law partner living inside Canada, and 25 months for Parents or Grandparents PR as per the latest IRCC official update.