IRCC expands immigration program for out-of-status construction workers in the GTA
As part of easing its current labour shortages in skilled trades, the Government of Canada has recently announced that it is expanding its pilot program which has provided hundreds of out-of-status construction workers in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) with a path to permanent residency.
In 2019, Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) launched this program for 500 out-of-status construction workers in the GTA. On January 20, 2023, the government stated that it is doubling the yearly number of available spots to 1,000.
This program not only recognizes the vital role that construction workers play in building communities and growing the economy, but also offers them and their families a path to permanent residency so that they can stay in and settle within Canada for the long-term. The program furthermore fosters more stability in the construction industry and facilitates skilled workers in Canada to continue to address the nation’s critical housing development needs.
To qualify under this program, applicants must:
- Have entered Canada as a temporary resident but currently have no status.
- Live in Canada and have been here for at least 5 years.
- Have the right work experience.
- Have family in Canada.
- Be referred by the CLC.
- Be otherwise admissible to Canada.
The main occupations that qualify for the program include:
- Industrial, electrical and construction trades
- Maintenance and equipment operation trades
- Residential and commercial installers and servicers
- Heavy equipment operators
- Construction trades helpers and labourers.
Applicants who are eligible for the program have until January 2, 2024 to apply for permanent residence and can include their spouses, partners, and dependent children in their application.
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