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Canada removes barriers for international students working in essential service

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International students in Canada will now be allowed to work full time if they are employed in an essential service.

The government recognizes that international students who are already in Canada have the ability to help meet the challenges presented by COVID-19. As a result, Canada has temporarily removed the regulation that limits international students from working more than 20 hours per week while classes are in session.

“Immigrants, temporary foreign workers and international students are making important contributions as frontline workers in health care and other essential service sectors,” Marco Mendicino, Canada’s immigration minister said in a media release. “We know and value their efforts and sacrifices to keep Canadians healthy and ensure the delivery of critical goods and services.”

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The change applies to study-permit holders who are working in industries that are considered to be critical in ensuring the health, safety, security, or economic well-being of Canadians and the government.

International students working in the following 10 sectors are included in Canada’s definition of critical infrastructure:

  • Energy and utilities
  • Information and Communication Technologies
  • Finance
  • Health
  • Food
  • Water
  • Transportation
  • Safety
  • Government
  • Manufacturing

Employers and international students may consult the government’s guide to determine if the change applies to their line of work.

This new measure will be in effect until August 31, 2020.

Find out how to stay in Canada

If you need assistance with the Post-Graduation Work Permit application process contact

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