A recent Access to Information Request (ATIP) to Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) obtained by CIC News shows that the department is considering a new method of processing work permits for some foreign workers.
The measure, which was proposed in December 2022, would apply to foreign workers who already have a Canadian work permit and are applying for another permit to continue working in the same occupation for the same employer.
IRCC has not confirmed this information so it remains to be seen whether it will go ahead with this proposal.
IRCC’s plan to reduce inventories
The proposal is part of an IRCC Action Plan to reduce inventories, improve client service and expedite the reduction of labour shortages in Canada. It also falls into the Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) mandate to simplify work permit renewals for the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP).
The new process would involve daily application pulls by the Global Case Management System (GMCS) into specific folders. IRCC says the process will not be automated.
Normally, processing involves an officer individually evaluating each work permit applicant to determine if they are approved. This includes a review of the applicant’s experience, education, language ability and any licensing requirements.
The officer will also assess if the offer of employment is genuine. They do this by checking if the employer is actively engaged in their business, if they can pay employee wages and that they are compliant with federal and provincial employment laws.
The new approach will apply to any applicant who is returning to the same employer and occupation whether they are applying from in Canada or abroad.