In November, IRCC released a report which their findings and recommendations on addressing issues in the citizenship program which was self-evaluated by IRCC between 2013 and 2018.
In the report, it was found that out of 3 million permanent residents who came to Canada between 2005 and 2015, 50 percent were citizens of Canada by December 31, 2018.
The highlighted areas in the citizenship program which need to be addressed and improved are as follow:
- Cost of Citizenship: IRCC has given the feedback that there is a need to review the Citizenship application fee structure as the increase in fees can serve as a barrier to certain immigrants like refugees and low-income families. As of right now, the citizenship application cost is $630 for adults and $100 for minors under age 18.
- Language verification process: IRCC have claimed that the proof submitted for language verification of a candidate does not always reflect the actual language skills and ability of the candidate, moreover, IRCC want to create a strategy in order to guide officers in properly validating language.
- A new approach for knowledge requirement: IRCC will develop a new approach for the Knowledge requirement as the current knowledge test and study guide have higher language level requirements than the actual language test itself. IRCC will be implementing the new strategy and proper tools will be provided to make the accessibility to knowledge resources easier.
- Knowledge and language exemptions: Many face barriers to citizenship in Canada due to their current knowledge and language requirements. This barrier is faced mostly by immigrants and people belonging from lower economical class who do not have proper language skills and knowledge. IRCC feels that there should be exemptions provided for such individuals.