New pathway to permanent residency available for healthcare workers

A new pathway to permanent residency announced for temporary residents working in the healthcare sector is now accepting applications from frontline workers. First announced on April 14, 2021 by the Honourable Marco E. L. Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (IRCC), the new pathway acknowledges the contributions of essential workers on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic by encouraging them to put down roots in Canada.

Under the new pathway, up to 90,000 temporary residents will be invited to apply, including:

  • 20,000 applications for temporary workers in health care;
  • 30,000 applications for temporary workers in other selected essential occupations; and
  • 40,000 applications for international students who graduated from a Canadian institution.

The streams will remain open until November 5, 2021 or until they have reached their limit. Individuals applying under the health care stream must have obtained at least 1 year of Canadian work experience in a health-care profession, such as a care aide or nurse. Additional details and eligibility requirements, including English language benchmarks, are available within the public policies.

The new program is welcome news to the BC Care Providers Association (BCCPA), who have been sounding the alarm about healthcare workforce shortages for several years; shortages which have only been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. With an aging workforce and an expanding senior’s population, immigration will be a priority strategy for ensuring a robust healthcare workforce.

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