Quebec government will ‘prioritize’ skilled worker applicants already living in province

CIC News
Published: February 28, 2019

Pour lire cet article en français, cliquez ici.

Quebec Premier François Legault addressed his government's controversial move to dismiss a backlog of 18,000 pending skilled worker applications Thursday, saying the province will prioritize 3,700 applications from candidates already working in the province on temporary permits. 

Legault's Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) government was hit with a 10-day injunction earlier this week by a Quebec Superior Court judge who ordered the government to continue processing the backlogged applications.

The injunction was requested by an association of Quebec immigration lawyers that argued Quebec’s immigration minister is required by law to issue decisions on the pending applications and does not have the discretionary authority to refuse to do so.

The CAQ government introduced legislation known as Bill 9 on February 7 that called for the immediate termination of the paper-based applications, which were submitted prior to the introduction of an online, expression of interest-based selection process for the  Quebec Skilled Worker Program (QSWP) last August.

Legault told reporters Thursday that the candidates the CAQ wants to prioritize will still have to submit an expression of interest through the province's new Arrima portal — which manages the pool of candidates for the QSWP —  and said their expressions of interest will only be processed once Bill 9 is passed into law.

The premier was responding to criticisms levied by Quebec's Ombudsperson, Marie Rinfret, in a written brief submitted to a National Assembly committee that is studying Bill 9.

Rinfret said the 18,000 applications represent around 45,000 people when spouses and dependent children are factored in, of whom 6,000 are already living in Quebec.

Rinfret said CAQ's decision to cancel the applications lacked empathy and was "an essentially administrative solution to a human problem."

The ombudsperson condemned the CAQ government's disregard for the "life projects" that the applications represent and called on it to honour the applications from those already in Quebec.

Rinfret said each of the 14,300 overseas applicants who won't be prioritized should have all application and language test fees refunded and receive a signed letter of apology from Quebec's CAQ Immigration Minister Simon Jolin-Barrette.

When Bill 9 was introduced, Jolin-Barrette said the new expression of interest-based system is a better fit for the CAQ government’s efforts to tailor the selection of skilled workers to labour shortages in regions around the province.

Jolin-Barrette said dismissing the application backlog was necessary so the government could focus on selecting candidates who have applied through Arrima, and reduce processing times from 36 months to six months.

© 2019 CICNews All Rights Reserved

 

Share this article
Share your voice
Did you find this article helpful?
Thank you for your feedback.
Subscribe to our newsletter
Did you find this article helpful?
Please provide a response
Thank you for your helpful feedback
Please contact us if you would like to share additional feedback, have a question, or would like Canadian immigration assistance.
  • Do you need Canadian immigration assistance? Contact the Contact Cohen Immigration Law firm by completing our form
  • Send us your feedback or your non-legal assistance questions by emailing us at media@canadavisa.com
Related articles
Five provinces invite candidates for provincial immigration in latest draws
Couple with large Canadian flag celebration in mountains.
Three tools to start looking for jobs after receiving an ITA from IRCC
Coworking spaces foster collaboration among diverse professionals in modern office
French language proficiency will lead category-based selection Express Entry draws in 2024
Nearly 80% of all Express Entry draws in 2024 will be category-based.
Statistics Canada releases new data on the educational achievements of racialized immigrants
Group of millenial young adult friends enjoying wintertime and in a snow-filled park
Top Stories
Canada announces measures to help individuals impacted by the ongoing crises in Haiti
British Columbia and Manitoba issue provincial nominations in latest PNP results
Canada’s immigration minister proposes new legislation for Canadian citizenship by descent
Join our free newsletter. Get Canada's top immigration stories delivered to your inbox.
Subscribe
More in Citizenship
Canada’s immigration minister proposes new legislation for Canadian citizenship by descent
Immigration Minister Marc Miller has introduced legislation to update Canada's citizenship laws.
Canada celebrates Citizenship Week 2024
Canada is marking its annual citizenship week.
Canada processing proof of citizenship applications faster than pre-pandemic standards
A father and son at a Canada day parade, surrounded by Canadian flags
Study: Fewer recent immigrants are seeking Canadian citizenship
Young family with children having fun in nature on a picnic
Link copied to clipboard