Canada’s New Measures Open Doors for Skilled Refugees and Displaced Individuals

EMPP streams

Refugees and other displaced people are compelled to begin their life from scratch when they leave their home country. However, in Canada, you can stay assured that you will get support to learn new skills, receive training, and gain experience. Through the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP) and its various EMPP Streams, Canada has widened possibilities for talented refugees and other displaced people to relocate and use their education, skills, and experience to continue their careers in Canada.

On June 12, The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship, announced that the Canadian government opened two additional EMPP streams to apply for EMPP following a promise made on March 27, 2023. Candidates can still submit applications using the current regional EMPP economic channels.

“Helping employers access a new global talent pool is another way we are using our immigration system to address ongoing labor shortages. Finding these skilled workers among people who happen to be displaced abroad and lack a durable solution is a made-­in­-Canada solution that we are promoting globally. Canada will continue to create and expand such novel policies that let us welcome more vulnerable individuals while supporting enterprises to discover the qualified labor they require for growth.”

– The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship

The Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP) facilitates the immigration of qualified refugees and other displaced individuals to Canada. The EMPP helps with the following:

  • Review and complete your application in 6 months or less (in most circumstances).
  • Pay for medical examinations under the Interim Federal Health Programme.
  • You can waive biometric and application costs for both you and your dependents.
  • If the EMPP approves your application, you can utilize the Immigration Loans Programme (ILP).
  • You can enroll in the EMPP-specific Canadian Orientation Abroad Programme to support your relocation to Canada.

To be eligible to apply for the EMPP, you must fulfill the following three distinct criteria:

  1. You must be a homeless person or a refugee.
  2. You must be eligible to apply under a regional economic immigration program (EMPP).
  3. You must be eligible to enter Canada.

The two additional EMPP streams widen the eligibility to apply for EMPP. The two streams are:

  • Individuals having work offers from a Canadian business
  • Highly qualified refugees.

Canadian employers utilize the EMPP Federal Skills Job Offer Stream to fill various in-demand positions. The positions include the following:

  • nurse assistants
  • personal assistance workers
  • long-term care aides
  • computer programmers
  • web developers
  • mechanical and electrical engineers and technicians
  • hospitality and tourism workers
  • truck and delivery service drivers

You must meet a few requirements to be eligible for the job offer stream. A legitimate employment offer is required, i.e., a full-time offer (a week’s worth of labor that includes at least 30 hours) from an employer in Canada.

The Federal Skills Without a Job Offer Stream within the EMPP program recognizes that specific candidates possess exceptional skills that are highly sought after in Canada’s job market, ensuring their prospects for employment upon arrival. To apply to this stream, you must have the following:

  • You must possess a secondary school diploma from Canada or a degree, diploma, or certificate from another country with an Educational Credential Assessment that was issued not more than five years before the date of your application.
  • You must show that you have enough resources to sustain your family and yourself in Canada. Your family size will determine how much you pay. It could contain
    • Grants
    • Gifts
    • Charitable contributions earned by your family, including that of your husband or partner and any dependents

Through EMPP, displaced individuals may utilize their abilities to enhance not just their own lives and the lives of their families but also the communities and employers that embrace them.

As Chair of the Global Taskforce on Labour Mobility, Canada is actively advancing its role by enhancing the responsiveness of its immigration system and serving as a model for other nations with similar objectives. This commitment allows Canada to effectively fulfill its economic and humanitarian obligations while fostering greater labor mobility on a global scale.

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