Special program for asylum seekers during the COVID-19 period
 
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Special program for asylum seekers during the COVID-19 period

The Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration (MIFI) confirms the upcoming adoption of a new immigration program in Québec that will allow asylum seekers who provided direct care to patients and seniors since the start of the health crisis to settle in Québec permanently.

The purpose of the program announced today is to thank asylum seekers who provided direct care during the pandemic to patients and seniors, by making it easier for them to obtain their permanent residency.  Those awaiting a decision about their refugee status and who have been denied will be able to take advantage of this program, if they meet the selection conditions.

In order to be selected under the program, applicants must have acquired at least six months’ work experience in Québec in one of the eligible occupations, including at least 120 hours between March 13, 2020 and August 14, 2020, in a public or private health facility or for a social economy or private homecare enterprise.

Family members who are here in Canada with the asylum seeker can also be included in the application.

The date on which the program comes into effect will be announced at a later date.

Questions and answers

Important: The government must render its decision before the program can come into effect. All information about this future program, particularly selection conditions, are subject to change and will therefore be announced on a preliminary and informative basis, pending decisions required to enact the regulation that will bring the program into effect.  

What will the program’s selection conditions be?

To be eligible for the program, applicants domiciled in Québec must first be eligible for the federal public interest policy, meaning that they applied for asylum before March 13 and obtained a work permit after their application for asylum.

Then, to be selected by Québec, they must meet the following conditions:

  • have worked in Québec for at least 120 hours between March 13, 2020 and August 14, 2020, in one of the eligible occupations, in a public or private health facility or for a social economy or private homecare enterprise;
  • have acquired in Québec at least six months’ full-time work experience or 750 hours (acquired full time or part time) in one of the eligible occupations, in a public or private health institution or for a social economy or private homecare enterprise, before or during the duration of the special immigration program.

Applicants must have met all of the above-mentioned selection conditions no later than August 31, 2021.

Specific measures should also be set out for certain exceptional cases, particularly for asylum seeker who contracted COVID-19 while working in healthcare. These measures would apply to the families in Québec of asylum seekers who worked in healthcare and died due to COVID-19.

What occupations could be eligible under this program?

Occupations directly related to the delivery of healthcare:

  • nursing coordinators and supervisors (NOC 3011);
  • registered nurses (NOC 3012);
  • licensed practical nurses (NOC 3233);
  • nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates (NOC 3413);
  • home support workers (NOC 4412: for occupations that involve providing direct care only). 

 

Can the family of the applicant be included on the application for this program?

The program is intended for principal applicants and their families who are in Canada. However, once permanent residency has been obtained, applicants can send for their family abroad under the family reunification program.

Will there be a maximum number of permanent selection applications for this program?

No ceiling will be established since the objective of this program for permanent application is to show gratitude to asylum seekers for their important contribution working in the health sector during the pandemic.

Will there be administrative fees associated with this program for people who wish to submit an application?

There will not be any fees for submitting an application in Québec. However, fees will be charged by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.

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Last modification : 2020-08-17
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