Last Updated on August 3, 2019
Aug 03, 2019 – Newcomers to Canada who face family abuse can now apply for a temporary resident permit under a new initiative from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.
Starting July 26, 2019, newcomers who are victims of family violence can apply for a fee-exempt temporary resident permit to give them legal immigration status in Canada.
The status includes a work permit and health care coverage.
IRCC is also expediting the process for those in urgent family violence situations who apply for permanent residence on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.
The expedited temporary resident permit process for victims of family violence is only available to foreign nationals in Canada who have not yet obtained their permanent residence and whose status in Canada is dependent on their abusive spouse or partner.
It is not available to foreign nationals outside Canada.
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On June 4, 2019, IRCC began allowing migrant workers on an employer-specific work permit facing an abusive job situation in Canada to apply for an open work permit.
The change allows the worker to leave the abusive employer immediately and find another job without fear of losing their status.
When an application is approved for an open work permit for a vulnerable worker, the employer also faces an inspection.
To date, more than 160 employers have been found non-compliant and received a monetary penalty and/or a ban on hiring foreign workers.
Cases that involve potentially criminal behaviour are referred to Canada Border Services Agency or the appropriate police force.
A third initiative will help newcomers sponsor family members that they did not initially declare.
When a person applies to immigrate to Canada, they are required to declare all of their family members.
The consequence for failing to declare a family member is a lifetime bar on the principal applicant being able to sponsor that family member in the future.
As of September 9, 2019, a two-year pilot project will allow certain people to sponsor undeclared immediate family members.
The people who qualify to do this include resettled refugees, those conferred refugee protection in Canada or those sponsored as a spouse, partner or dependent child.
Applications that are already in process will also benefit from this pilot project.