A new bill on immigration was introduced today in the National Assembly
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A new bill on immigration was introduced today in the National Assembly

The bill Loi visant à accroître la prospérité socio-économique du Québec et à répondre adéquatement aux besoins du marché du travail par une intégration réussie des personnes immigrantes (PL9) was introduced today in the National Assembly. The goal of this bill is to establish the necessary legal basis for improving the francization and integration of selected candidates as well as a better alignment of Québec’s labour needs with the profile of selected candidates.

The main objectives of the bill are as follows:

Improving the selection of immigrants

For immigration to contribute significantly to growing Québec’s prosperity and better responding to job market needs, the Ministère would like to benefit more immediately from the new system for managing immigration applications based on the statement of interest. To do this, the bill proposes terminating most of the applications for which a decision has not yet been rendered under the Regular Skilled Worker Program and reimbursing the applicants in question so that from this point on all new applications occur by invitation of the Minister, following submission of a statement of interest.

This provision of the bill seeks, in particular, to:

  • ensure a better alignment between job market needs and the profile of selected candidates;
  • benefit more immediately from the new system for managing immigration applications based on the declaration of interest, by inviting candidates who meet Québec’s needs;
  • reduce processing times for applications for permanent selection from skilled workers.

Note that applications for the addition of a spouse or a de facto spouse and applications for the addition of a child submitted by skilled workers who have already been selected are not targeted by this provision.

Improving the francization and integration of immigrants

The bill seeks to emphasize the importance of the process for integrating immigrants, in particular by clarifying the principle of the commitment shared between Québec society and immigrants. On the one hand, Québec society must be welcoming and inclusive and the government is responsible, in particular, for putting in place an effective and personalized offer of services for francization and integration. On the other, immigrants must commit to successfully carrying out the necessary steps for settling and integrating in Québec, including learning French as well as democratic values and Québec’s values, as set out in the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms.

Strengthening Québec’s actions in the area of immigration

The Ministère wishes to pursue its efforts to fully exercise its powers of selection, particularly with the reintroduction of the enabling power that allows the Québec government to determine by regulation the conditions for permanent residence that the Minister can impose on the candidates selected. Québec also wishes to expand its scope of intervention, by ensuring better follow-up of the clients that use the services offered by its many partners.

Public consultations on the bill will begin shortly and will enable stakeholders in the milieu, such as francization, integration and immigration law organizations, to voice their opinions on the new orientations proposed by the government.

Special consultations and public hearings

Special consultations and public hearings on Bill 9 will be held February 21, 26, 27, and 28, 2019, at the National Assembly.

These special consultations and public hearings will give various societal actors from Québec a chance to have a say on the new immigration, francization, and integration policies the government is proposing.

Individuals and organizations wishing to take part in the consultation can use the form on the National Assembly website to comment on the bill.

You can also read comments made during the consultations by accessing the relevant documents on the National Assembly website.


Does Québec still want to welcome immigrants?

The eventual reimbursement of pending applicant files does not mean that Québec no longer wants to receive their applications. It’s rather that the old system had become ineffective, especially for applicants who had been waiting several years before their application was processed.

Obviously, we understand that an immigration application represents, in many cases, a life project, and that the persons affected by the provision that proposes the reimbursement of applications in the inventory may have concerns. We acknowledge that it is a disappointment for these persons who have been waiting for years and who have invested a great deal of time and energy into it.

Is it still possible to submit an application?

We encourage applicants who are already in Québec to file an expression of interest in Arrima. Their knowledge of the French language and their employment status in Québec may allow them to be invited to submit an application for permanent selection, according to the invitation criteria.

We also invite all foreign students and temporary workers to get informed on the Programme de l’expérience Québécoise (PEQ – Québec experience program) and to, if they meet the conditions, submit an application without delay. It is a simplified process to obtain access to permanent residence, which is not affected by Bill 9. For more details, consult the section Applying for permanent selection.

Certain applicants who are already in Québec and who are proficient in French may also be eligible for the Self-Employed and Entrepreneurs programs. In fact, persons who are proficient in French may file an application at any time under these programs. To learn the rules and procedures, consult the section Businesspeople.

When and how will applicants be reimbursed?

For the time being, the Bill has been introduced and the consultation process is ongoing. If the Bill is passed and assented to, we will communicate the information and details regarding reimbursement to the applicants affected.

Did you apply for permanent selection under the Regular Skilled Worker Program before August, 2, 2018?

We urge anyone who submitted an application for permanent selection under the Regular Skilled Worker Program before August 2, 2018, to submit an expression of interest in Arrima.

This system is designed to help better align the needs of the job market with the profiles of those invited to apply for immigration and to reduce processing times for such applications. The Ministère intends to render decisions on permanent selection applications submitted following an invitation based on the expression of interest within an average of 6 months.

Are you residing in Québec as a temporary foreign worker?

Bill 9 does not change the conditions of your stay in Québec or the rules for issuing work permits, which are the exclusive responsibility of the federal government.

The first steps in any work permit renewal must be taken by your employer. You will then need to make sure you submit your work permit renewal application to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada before your current residence permits expire.

We also encourage you to read the terms and conditions of the Programme de l’expérience québécoise (PEQ - Québec experience program), a simplified permanent selection program specifically for temporary foreign workers employed in Québec and foreign students who have earned degrees in Québec. Complete applications received under this program are processed on a priority basis, with an average processing time of 20 business days, excluding postal delays.

The Programme de l’expérience québécoise (PEQ - Québec experience program) is not affected by Bill 9, and you may submit an application at any time.

Has a Québec employer offered you a permanent job?

People with a job offer validated by the Ministère and who submit an expression of interest in Arrima will be invited to apply for permanent selection under the Regular Skilled Worker Program.

Bill 9 in no way changes decisions made by the Ministère with regard to an employer’s application to have a job offer validated. Job offers remain valid, regardless of the timing of the Ministère’s decision.

Are you self-employed in Québec or interested in developing a business project here?

Depending on the nature of your project in Québec, you may also be interested in learning about the Self-Employed Worker Program or Entrepreneur Program. Entrepreneur or self-employed applicants with an advanced intermediate level of French may apply at any time.

For information on the details of Bill 9 and the public consultation, consult the National Assembly’s site.

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Last modification : 2019-02-21
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