Canada has revealed its immigration priorities for the year 2021 as Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has provided immigration minister Marco Mendicino with a new supplement mandate letter. Mandate letter is the most important policy document for Canada’s immigration department as it outlines the targets and priorities set by the Prime Minister and asking the immigration minister and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to pursue those targets and priorities during the government’s time in power.
According to Trudeau, Immigration will remain central to Canada’s economy and society.
“The COVID-19 crisis has been difficult for all Canadians. As a team, we are committed to doing whatever it takes, for as long as it takes, to keep Canadians safe and supported. These mandate letters outline the actions that our government will continue to take to fight this pandemic, keep people safe, and build a Canada that is stronger, more resilient, and fairer for everyone.”The Rt. Hon. Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada
The mandate letter focuses on issues such as Canada’s Immigration Levels Plan, new immigration programs for IRCC to create and, improving IRCC’s application processing duration. The release of the mandate letter follows the historic new 2021-2023 Immigration Levels Plan which was announced by Canada that will see it target over 400,000 immigrants per year.
This new mandate letter supplements the one that Trudeau provided to Mendicino in December 2019. The new supplementary mandate letter was required as the Canadian government started a new session of Parliament in September and the new mandate letter also includes new objectives introduced due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Key priorities which were outlined in the Mandate letter include:
- Canada will continue to welcome immigrants to support Canada’s economic growth and post-COVID recovery by expanding pilot programs to welcome refugees through economic class immigration streams, expediting family reunification, and working on pilot programs.
- Canada will continue to implement measures to provide permanent residence pathways to those who have provided health care in long-term care homes, medical facilities, or to those who performed other essential services during the coronavirus pandemic.
- Canada will continue to work with cabinet colleagues to protect the health and safety of Canadians and will manage Canada’s ports of entry responsibly and compassionately.
- Work with the Minister of Employment, Workforce Development, and Disability Inclusion to protect workers who are vulnerable to COVID-19 and to secure workers to fill labor force needs in farming and food processing.
- Continue working with Canada’s provinces and territories to provide settlement supports to newcomers including French-language training.