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Citizenship

Government of Canada amends the Citizenship Act

Bill C-6 received royal assent on June 19, 2017 and eases many of the key eligibility requirements for citizenship, including the physical presence requirement and the requirement to demonstrate knowledge of Canada and its official languages. Bill C-6 also eliminates some of the more controversial elements of the Strengthening Canadian Citizenship Act, including the ability to revoke the Canadian citizenship of dual nationals based on national security grounds.

 

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Government of Canada proposes significant amendments to the Citizenship Act

On February 6, 2014, Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander unveiled Bill C-24, the Strengthening Canadian Citizenship Act, which will be the first significant amendment to the Canadian Citizenship Act since 1977. Although Bill C-24 contains several welcome changes…

 

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Facebook posting about co-worker = workplace harassment

In a recent case the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal found that a facebook posting about a co-worker’s Mexican heritage was prohibited workplace harassment under the Human Rights Code .

 

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The impact of human rights legislation on the interview process

Many H.R. Departments pride themselves on the skill with which they can interview prospective employees in order to assess their qualifications for the position being advertised, the fit of the employee with the organization, and the likelihood that the employee will stay with the organization for a reasonable period of time. What employers are often not cognizant of is the limitation imposed on this process by the provisions of various provincial and federal Human Rights statutes.

 

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CIC publishes ministerial instructions establishing the start-up business class

On March 30, 2013, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (“CIC”) published Ministerial Instructions in the Canada Gazette, which formally establish the new Start-Up Business Class. CIC also published Chapter 27 of the Overseas Processing Manual, which provides further details regarding the processing of such applications.

 

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Citizenship and Immigration Canada announces start-up visa program

On January 24, 2013, Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Citizen Jason Kenney announced that Citizenship and Immigration Canada would launch a Start-Up Visa Program to recruit innovative immigrant entrepreneurs who will create new jobs and spur economic growth. This program differs from existing investor and entrepreneur options to the extent that the entrepreneur will not need to be the source of investment capital. Such a program will enable entrepreneurs who establish start-up businesses using capital contributed by third parties, such as venture capital firms or angel investors, to seek permanent residence in Canada. The Start-Up Visa Program begins on April 1, 2013.

 

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New federal skilled worker program to begin accepting applications as of May 4, 2013

As previously reported, last year Citizenship and Immigration Canada (“CIC”) imposed a “temporary pause” on the acceptance of new Federal Skilled Worker Program (“FSWP”) applications, which became effective on July 1, 2012. On December 19, 2012, Citizenship, Immigration, and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney announced that the FSWP will once again begin accepting new applications on May 4, 2013.

 

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Federal skilled trades program begins accepting applications

On August 18, 2012, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (“CIC”) published proposed regulatory amendments in the Canada Gazette, which (once enacted) would create a Federal Skilled Trades Program (“FSTP”).  On January 2, 2013, Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney announced that CIC would begin accepting applications under the FSTP, effective immediately.

 

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CIC proposes conditional permanent residence to discourage marriage fraud

On March 9, 2012, Jason Kenney, the Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism announced additional measures to discourage marriage fraud. Under the new proposal, conditional permanent resident status would apply to all spouses in relationships of two years or less who have no children with their sponsor at the time of the sponsorship application. Although the Canadian Government’s desire to discourage immigration fraud is not unreasonable, the current Canadian proposal is problematic for a number of reasons.

 

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Proposed citizenship ceremony leave in Nova Scotia

Bill 115, An Act to Amend Chapter 246 of the Revised Statutes, 1989, the Labour Standards Code, Respecting Citizenship Ceremony Leave received first reading in the Nova Scotia Legislature, and is currently sitting with the Law Amendments Committee. The goal of the Bill is to create an unpaid leave of absence of up to one day under the Labour Standards Code so employment is protected while employees attend their citizenship ceremony.

 

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Canadian government reduces immigration targets for parents and grandparents

On February 13, 2011, Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism announced that, in 2010, Canada welcomed the highest number of legal immigrants in more than 50 years (280,636 permanent residents). A day later, New Democrat immigration critic Olivia Chow stated during a press conference that information obtained under an Access to Information Act request revealed that the federal government intends to further reduce the immigration targets for parents and grandparents from 15,300 in 2010 to 11,000.

 

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Fact or fiction: The use of illegal employment in provincial nominee applications

Earlier this month, the QMI Agency reported that senior Citizenship and Immigration Canada officials had said illegal work experience could count towards a permanent residence application filed under a Provincial Nominee Program. Was this fact or fiction?

 

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