Operational Bulletin 123-B – July 17, 2013
- Immigration authorities have granted an extension to this pilot project for working age dependent children of skilled workers destined to Ontario. This extension is in effect until July 31, 2014.
- The authorities also expect that henceforth, all immigration officers would need to code all the relevant work permits with the Special Program Code “WDP” as detailed subsequently in this Operational Bulletin (OB)
- By coding the relevant work permits with the Special Program Code of “WDP”, officers would be able to support an effective evaluation of the pilot – in accordance with the stipulated guidelines
- Coding the relevant work permits with the Special Program Code of “WDP” would also help officers when they need to review these applications – also in accordance with the stipulated guidelines
The concerned parties to the Agreement for Canada-Ontario Cooperation on Immigration agreed to certain terms. These terms found mention in the Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) annex to the Agreement for Canada-Ontario Cooperation on Immigration. The parties signed this agreement in August 2008.
According to Section 4.2:
“4.2 Canada agrees to issue an open work permit to accompanying dependents of a TFW in Ontario if the TFW holds a work permit valid for 6 months or longer and is a Skilled Worker. The work permit will only be issued upon application by the dependent; the work permit will be limited to work in the province of Ontario; and a work permit will only be issued to persons who are otherwise able to be legally employed in Ontario. The work permits should expire the same date as the expiry date of the work permit of the principal work permit holder.”
In addition, section 4.4 of the Annex mentions that officers would need to provide an exemption to the dependents described in the above-mentioned excerpt. This waiver would ensure that dependents do not need to obtain a Labour Market Opinion (LMO).
Currently, the authorities concerned have extended this pilot program until July 31, 2014. Moreover, officers would need to code all relevant work permits with the Special Program Code “WDP” as indicated below. This code would help the authorities by:
- Supporting an effective evaluation of the pilot and,
- Assisting the officers at the time officers review these applications
The New Pilot Program Parameters
The authorities concerned have extended this pilot from July 31, 2013 to July 31, 2014 – inclusively. These dates do not refer to the duration of the work permits. They only refer to the period during which officers would need to receive the qualifying work permit applications.
The terms of the pilot would only apply to qualifying foreign nationals as described subsequently. Moreover, the terms would only be applicable to qualifying foreign nationals destined to work in the province of Ontario. Officers would need to code all the relevant work permits as per the instructions given subsequently. This would help support an effective evaluation of the pilot program.
The Pilot Procedures
Applicants for this pilot program would need to refer to the Foreign Worker Manual (FW 1). This manual contains all the:
- General eligibility criteria
- Conditions specified by the work permit and,
- The processing procedures
All the above-mentioned details would continue to apply in conjunction with the procedures listed below.
- To become eligible for this pilot program, dependent children of foreign nationals would need to meet all the following criteria
- They would need to:
- Be eligible to work in the province of Ontario
- Be a dependent child of a foreign national, where the principal applicant:
- Is entering Canada
- Is destined to work in Ontario as a Temporary Foreign Worker and,
- Has a valid, job-specific work permit with a minimum duration of at least six months in an occupation found within skill levels 0, A or B of the NOC system
- These conditions are in accordance with Section 2, Interpretation of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR)
- The employers bear the complete responsibility of ensuring that they adhere to the provincial minimum age employment standards
- They would need to refer to the website of the Ministry of Labour, Ontario for additional details
Open Work Permit Issuance
- Officers could issue a non job-specific open or open / restricted work permit to a working age dependent child accompanying a Temporary Foreign Worker principal applicant as described earlier
- Officers would not need to check whether the applicant has an LMO from Service Canada accompanying the application
- In this situation, the dependent would need to apply for the work permit and pay the appropriate fees
- Officers could issue these work permits based on the medical examination requirements, if applicable. This is applicable especially if the officers are issuing a restricted work permit to the working age dependent child.
- Officers can only issue a dependent’s work permit if they have found the principal applicant eligible for a work permit
- A dependent could apply for an open work permit at the same time as the principal applicant
- Alternatively, a dependent could apply for an open work permit at:
- A mission
- A port of entry or,
- However, the duration of the open work permit must not exceed the expiry date of the principal applicant’s work permit
- Officers would need to perform the necessary verification of dependency checks as per existing procedures
- This would help them confirm that the relationship is bona fide
- Officers would need to enter the LMO exemption code as T13
- This is in accordance with section R204(c) of the IRPR, which states that this is “an agreement entered into by the Minister with a province or group of provinces under subsection 8(1) of the Act”
- Special Program Code
- Officers would need to use the NEW Special Program Code “WDP” for Working Age Dependents of provincial TFW) in the:
- Field Operations Support Systems (FOSS) or,
- Global Case Management System (GCMS) AND,
- Dependent’s initial work permit and,
- Dependent’s work permit extensions for this pilot
- Officers would need to enter details of the principal applicant related to the dependent in the remarks section for cross reference purposes
- The details they would enter include the:
- Name of the principal applicant
- Work permit number of the principal applicant
- Words “Dependent of Client 1234-5678 Surname, FirstName MiddleNameInitial, on WP U9012345678, valid to DDMMYYYY”
- Officers would need to ensure that the dependent’s work permit only specifies that:
- The Province field specifies the province of Ontario only and,
- The printed Conditions specify that this work permit is only valid for work performed in the province of Ontario
- Officers would need to enter the following details into FOSS before generating the work permit for any applications that originate at a visa office:
- Any coding
- All conditions
- All remarks (if applicable)
- Officers would need to check whether FOSS has downloaded the above-mentioned details from GCMS first
- Only after checking the above-mentioned details on the GCMS can officers generate the work permit appropriately
Duration and Extensions
- The duration of the dependent’s work permit must not exceed the expiry date of the principal applicant’s work permit
- Officers have the authority to extend the work permit of the dependent in case the immigration authorities have extended the principal applicant’s work permit
Officers would facilitate the issuance of work permits to working age dependents of skilled temporary foreign workers. Therefore, the objective of this pilot program is to check whether facilitating the issuance of work permits would make Ontario a more attractive destination for the principal applicants or not.
This would help the authorities enhance the effectiveness of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program. Enhancing this program would help in attracting international workers, who have in-demand skills.
Source: Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC)