Canadian Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino said Canada is planning to recruit 90,000 essential industry employees and international graduates currently in Canada, to become permanent residents.
The new policy will grant permanent status to temporary workers and graduates who possess the skills and experience the country needs to fight the COVID-19 pandemic and achieve economic recovery, Minister Mendicino said.
“Canada’s path to prosperity lies through immigration because newcomers … will come and roll up their sleeves and contribute and give back in our health care sector and in many other vital areas of the economy,” he said at a news conference.
Minister Mendicino said health care and other eligible essential workers must have at least one year of Canadian work experience to apply, while international graduates must have completed an eligible Canadian post-secondary program within the last four years.
On May 6, the immigration department will start accepting up to 50,000 applications from health care and other essential workers and 40,000 applications from international students who graduated from a Canadian institution.
Goldy Hyder, president of the Business Council of Canada, said the new program will strengthen Canada’s economic recovery by ensuring that everyone who wishes to participate in the labour force has the ability to do so.
The Immigration Department said the new policy will help the government meet its goal to accept 401,000 new permanent residents this year.
Minister Mendicino said jobs deemed essential are sometimes seen as non-skilled jobs. Now, he hopes, is the time for Canadians to realize the value of the essential workers and that the immigration policy also shows respect for their role.
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