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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

BREAKING NEWS: Federal Skilled Worker Program

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

BREAKING NEWS: Federal Skilled Worker Program Will Reopen in May 2013

DECEMBER, 2012

Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) has announced that the new selection system for the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) will take effect on May 4th, 2013. At that time, the program will begin accepting applications for review. In addition to the long-awaited announcement, important new details about the program have been revealed, helping to paint a fuller picture of what Canadian immigration will look like in the coming year.

Rest of article here:http://www.cicnews.com/2012/12/breaking-news-federal-skilled-worker-program-reopen-2013-122126.html

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

Another quote from article:

"Once they have submitted their applications, the government promises that individuals will enjoy the fastest processing times for the FSWP in recent history. Those who are successful will arrive in Canada better prepared to find employment, integrate into their communities, and settle into their new home."

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

From CIC website:

New Federal Skilled Worker Program to accept applications beginning May 4, 2013

Ottawa, December 19, 2012 — The new selection system for the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) will take effect on May 4, 2013 at which time the program will re-open for applications, Citizenship, Immigration, and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney announced today.

“The government’s number one priority remains jobs, economic growth, and long-term prosperity,” said Minister Kenney. “The new Federal Skilled Worker Program criteria will ensure Canada is selecting the skilled immigrants our economy needs, who are the most likely to succeed and fully realize their potential in Canada.”

The improvements to the FSWP points grid are based on a large body of research which has consistently shown that language proficiency and youth are two of the most important factors in the economic success of immigrants.

The final changes to the FSWP selection criteria include:

  • Minimum official language thresholds and increased points for official language proficiency, making language the most important factor in the selection process;
  • Increased emphasis on younger immigrants, who are more likely to acquire valuable Canadian experience, are better positioned to adapt to changing labour market conditions, and who will spend a greater number of years contributing to Canada’s economy;
  • Introduction of the Educational Credential Assessment (ECA), so that education points awarded reflect the foreign credential’s true value in Canada;
  • Changes to the arranged employment process, allowing employers to hire applicants quickly, if there is a demonstrated need in the Canadian labour market; and
  • Additional adaptability points for spousal language ability and Canadian work experience.

“For too long, too many immigrants to Canada have experienced underemployement and unemployment, and this has been detrimental to these newcomers and to the Canadian economy,” said Minister Kenney. “Our transformational changes to the FSWP will help ensure that skilled newcomers are able to contribute their skills fully to the economy as soon as possible. This is good for newcomers, good for the economy, and good for all Canadians.”

There are two new steps to the new selection system. First, applicants will have to demonstrate that they meet the minimum language threshold, which is level 7 of the Canadian Language Benchmark assessment system. Applicants will be able to get a language assessment from existing agencies designated by the Minister and listed on the CIC website.

Second, applicants will have their education credentials assessed prior to arriving in Canada. A list of assessment organizations designated by the Minister will be made available early in the New Year. The assessment of foreign educational credentials will provide prospective newcomers with a more realistic understanding of how their credentials compare to education standards in Canada. It will also give them the opportunity to upgrade their education prior to coming to Canada if they choose.

It is important to note that these changes will not apply to people who have applied to the FSWP prior to May 4, 2013 with a qualifying arranged job offer or under the Ph.D. stream.

As recently announced, due to the actions taken over the past months, new applications under the FSWP will be processed in a few months, rather than a few years. In order to ensure fast processing times and to avoid backlogs, the new FSWP will accept a fixed number of applications each year.

In the medium term, the Government is also moving forward to develop and implement an Expression of Interest (EOI) model, which will provide employers with access to a pool of skilled workers.

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http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/media/releases/2012/2012-12-19.asp

Backgrounder — Overview of the New Federal Skilled Worker Program

The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) selects immigrants based on their ability to succeed economically in Canada. It measures applicants using a selection grid worth up to 100 points. The current pass mark is 67. Each applicant is awarded points for official language ability, age, education, work experience, employment already arranged in Canada, and adaptability (such as previous work experience or education acquired in Canada).

Following a thorough review of relevant research, an extensive program evaluation, stakeholder and public consultations, research and study of best practices in other immigrant receiving countries, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is introducing a suite of improvements to the FSWP.

What has changed and why:

LANGUAGE: Requiring a minimum level of language proficiency (28 points max.)

Canadian and international research has consistently shown that language proficiency is the single most important factor in gaining better rates of employment, appropriate employment and higher earnings.

In light of this, CIC is establishing minimum language requirements and is significantly increasing the maximum points awarded for the applicant’s proficiency in English or French. Language ability is now the most important factor on the grid, representing a total of up to 28 points in recognition of its critical importance in ensuring successful outcomes.

AGE: More emphasis on younger workers (12 points max.)

Studies show that younger immigrants integrate more rapidly into the labour market and spend a greater number of years contributing to Canada’s economy. The revised selection grid benefits younger immigrants by awarding a maximum of 12 points up to age 35, with diminishing points awarded from 35 to age 46. There will be no points given after age 46; however, workers aged 47 or older will continue to be eligible for the Program.

EDUCATION: New Educational Credential Assessment (25 points max.)

Previously, points were awarded based on the applicant’s educational credentials in their home country and the years of education required to obtain the credential. This did not take into account its comparative value when assessed against Canadian educational credentials.

The new regulations require a mandatory assessment of foreign educational credentials to determine their equivalency to a completed educational credential in Canada. This also helps to screen out fraudulent credentials, as CIC will not accept those that are not equivalent to a completed Canadian educational credential. In summary, education points will be awarded based on the value of the educational credentials in Canada.

The Minister of CIC will designate credential assessment organizations and regulatory bodies to conduct the assessments as part of the immigration selection process. These agencies will be announced in early 2013.

WORK EXPERIENCE: Redirecting points to other factors (15 points max.)

Foreign work experience is a weak predictor of success in the Canadian labour market. As a result, CIC is reducing the total number of points for work experience from 21 to 15, and increasing the years of experience required to get full points. These changes better reflect the relative value that Canadian employers place on foreign work experience, and allow extra points to be redirected to the language and age factors, which are better indicators of success in the Canadian labour market.

ARRANGED EMPLOYMENT: Streamlining the process and reducing the potential for fraudulent job offers (10 points max.)

The FSWP evaluation showed that people who immigrate with a valid job offer do very well in Canada, earning 79% more in the first three years after arrival than people without arranged employment. However, a more rigorous up-front assessment of the employer and job offer is needed to curb the potential for fraud.

This will be achieved by requiring employers to get a Labour Market Opinion (LMO), issued by Human Resources Development Canada. This will verify that there is a need in the Canadian labour market for this type of worker and that the employer has tried to hire a Canadian or permanent resident first. A benefit for employers is that once they have established this labour market need, they can use the LMO to bring the worker in quickly on a work permit while the worker’s application to immigrate permanently is being processed.

ADAPTABILITY: Changes to reflect factors that help promote integration (10 points max.)

CIC is proposing changes to the adaptability criteria to emphasize factors that are shown to have a positive impact on an immigrant and their family’s integration. As employers have shown a preference for workers with Canadian study and work experience, points for previous work experience in Canada will be increased for the principal applicant. Points for previous study in Canada will remain the same.

Feedback from the consultations strongly recommended replacing the points factor for a spouse’s education with points for a spouse’s language proficiency to improve the likelihood of a family’s successful integration. The points for previous spousal study and/or work in Canada, and having relatives in Canada will remain unchanged. Applicants will have more opportunities overall to earn adaptability points, although the total points will remain the same.

Overall, the new and revised FSWP will enable CIC to select younger skilled workers, proficient in English or French, who can integrate more rapidly and successfully into the Canadian labour market and be active members of the work force for a longer period of time. These changes will also assist the government in meeting the goals stated in Canada’s Economic Action Plan 2012 by building a fast and flexible immigration system whose primary focus is meeting Canada’s economic and labour market needs.

http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/media/backgrounders/2012/2012-12-19.asp

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

I just want to express how sorry I am for those of you who are affected negatively by the new rules, etc.

I cannot imagine how deep the disappointment and frustration must be.

Here's hoping that many of the members here will be able to find a way to move to Canada.

Never, never, never give up hope!

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Wolverine

getting more n more diffucult, but looking more n more like Quebec. it looks a lot like what i did.

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Garreth

Another quote from article:

"Those who are successful will arrive in Canada better prepared to find employment."

Wow, in a few months they managed to get the Canadian business community open to skilled foreign workers. :rolleyes: Outside of some specialist oil and medical jobs, all the new arrivals will hit the same "Canadian experience" wall everyone else has.

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Tanya-Lisa

"the government promises that individuals will enjoy the fastest processing times for the FSWP in recent history." - Well, let's see - those who were waiting for 6 years just had their applications summarily cancelled - that was done pretty swiftly...wonder what "the fastest in recent history" really means...?! Really have no faith in this anymore, the damage has already been done for many.

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

"the government promises that individuals will enjoy the fastest processing times for the FSWP in recent history." - Well, let's see - those who were waiting for 6 years just had their applications summarily cancelled - that was done pretty swiftly...wonder what "the fastest in recent history" really means...?! Really have no faith in this anymore, the damage has already been done for many.

Tanya

It is really beyond comprehension that CIC changed their rules like that - to wait that long, just to be bumped off the waiting list is heart-breaking and frustrating.

Having gone through similar experiences in the USA, I can relate. Five years of waiting/processing down the drain in a single day.

We were very fortunate and VERY thankful that we were able to apply for Canada at that stage and today I am very grateful we are living in BC.

It was worth the wait, even though we had to start from scratch with applications when we moved to Canada in Jan.2006.

For our age-group (50+) it's an even greater miracle to be here. I think younger folks have a better chance of coming here now than my age-group. (That's what I get from the latest press release and info I posted here.)

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Petro Espey

Can my husband apply for FSWP with out having a job offer? He has the experience, education, age, language ect.

Or should we go the work permit route first and then try apply for PR once we in Canada?

I am very confused on what we have to do.

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Charl&Wouter

Yes you can apply without a job-offer, most of us are doing it. If you have a job offer there are easier ways to get into Canada. Having a job-offer just makes it much easier.

Can my husband apply for FSWP with out having a job offer? He has the experience, education, age, language ect.

Or should we go the work permit route first and then try apply for PR once we in Canada?

I am very confused on what we have to do.

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Petro Espey

Yes you can apply without a job-offer, most of us are doing it. If you have a job offer there are easier ways to get into Canada. Having a job-offer just makes it much easier.

Great! Thank you! :)

Think we will try and apply and look for work.

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Nelline

Hopefully this means we will be able to apply for PR after 1 year on a WP, instead of 2, if I am interpreting the below correctly?

*** CEC (Canadian Experience Class) ***

- The Canadian work experience requirement would be reduced from 24 months to 12 in the preceding 36 months, to allow faster transition for those who have already proven their employability in Canada's labour market. Accumulating 12 months of authorized work within the preceding 36 is more flexible for applicants working in Canada under international agreements (e.g. International Experience Canada).

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

Is the list of occupations eligible for FSW application available for the May 2013 re-opening of applications?

I don't recall seeing the new list. Please provide a link to the list. Thanks.

Canada's Most Popular Immigration Program Will Not Have Priority List – Minister

Posted on January 18, 2013A 140 character tweet from Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney last August may have answered one of the most pressing questions about the updated rules of the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) when it relaunches in May: will it be limited to a select group of occupations?

The FSWP as it exists now is restricted to individuals qualified in one of the vocations on the priority occupations list.

http://www.cicsnews.com/?cat=51

Immigration Options

Federal Skilled Worker

Accepted Occupations

In order to qualify you must have at least one year of continuous full-time or equivalent part-time paid work experience in at least one of the following eligible occupations within the last ten years:

0631 Restaurant and Food Service Managers

0811 Primary Production Managers (Except Agriculture)

1122 Professional Occupations in Business Services to Management

1233 Insurance Adjusters and Claims Examiners

2121 Biologists and Related Scientists

2151 Architects

3111 Specialist Physicians

3112 General Practitioners and Family Physicians

3113 Dentists

3131 Pharmacists

3142 Physiotherapists

3152 Registered Nurses

3215 Medical Radiation Technologists

3222 Dental Hygienists & Dental Therapists

3233 Licensed Practical Nurses

4151 Psychologists

4152 Social Workers

6241 Chefs

6242 Cooks

7215 Contractors and Supervisors, Carpentry Trades

7216 Contractors and Supervisors, Mechanic Trades

7241 Electricians (Except Industrial & Power System)

7242 Industrial Electricians

7251 Plumbers

7265 Welders & Related Machine Operators

7312 Heavy-Duty Equipment Mechanics

7371 Crane Operators

7372 Drillers & Blasters – Surface Mining, Quarrying & Construction

8222 Supervisors, Oil and Gas Drilling and Service

http://www.cicsimmig...i/fsw/fsw-list/

One aspect of the program's selection rules that was uncertain was whether a priority occupation list would exist under the revamped rules post-May 4th.

The Minister's tweet on August 18th 2012, seen below, suggests it won't:

Minister_JK_normal.jpg

The new Skilled Worker Program will be limited to applicants in NOCs 0, A, & B, but won't be limited to particular occupations.

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

These two points are important in my opinion - and potential applicants should look at this NOW:

New Federal Skilled Worker Program to accept applications beginning May 4, 2013

There are two new steps to the new selection system.

• First, applicants will have to demonstrate that they meet the minimum language threshold, which is level 7 of the Canadian Language Benchmark assessment system.

Applicants will be able to get a language assessment from existing agencies designated by the Minister and listed on the CIC website.

• Second, applicants will have their education credentials assessed prior to arriving in Canada.

A list of assessment organizations designated by the Minister will be made available early in the New Year. The assessment of foreign educational credentials will provide prospective newcomers with a more realistic understanding of how their credentials compare to education standards in Canada. It will also give them the opportunity to upgrade their education prior to coming to Canada if they choose.

See rest of article here:

http://www.moving2canada.com/newsmedia/new-federal-skilled-worker-program-to-accept-applications-beginning-may-4-2013/

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lgonsalves

These two points are important in my opinion - and potential applicants should look at this NOW:

New Federal Skilled Worker Program to accept applications beginning May 4, 2013

There are two new steps to the new selection system.

• First, applicants will have to demonstrate that they meet the minimum language threshold, which is level 7 of the Canadian Language Benchmark assessment system.

Applicants will be able to get a language assessment from existing agencies designated by the Minister and listed on the CIC website.

• Second, applicants will have their education credentials assessed prior to arriving in Canada.

A list of assessment organizations designated by the Minister will be made available early in the New Year. The assessment of foreign educational credentials will provide prospective newcomers with a more realistic understanding of how their credentials compare to education standards in Canada. It will also give them the opportunity to upgrade their education prior to coming to Canada if they choose.

See rest of article here:

http://www.moving2canada.com/newsmedia/new-federal-skilled-worker-program-to-accept-applications-beginning-may-4-2013/

Wow, interesting! So if there is no more NOC list is there still a cap?

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

Wow, interesting! So if there is no more NOC list is there still a cap?

Not sure what you mean as there is nothing about the NOC list falling away.

The immigration minister's tweet last August said: Jason Kenney @kenneyjason@wandesure "The new Skilled Worker Program will be limited to applicants in NOCs 0, A, & B, but won't be limited to particular occupations." (see previous post)

Why I posted the previous comment re. the two NEW points to qualify, (Language/credentials' assessment) is because I have seen a few lawyers/immigration websites encourage people to BE READY to file by the time the new applications' phase starts on May 4th, 2013. For people who have never had their credentials evaluated or a language test done, it might just be prudent to look at these two points and discuss it with their lawyers/immigration consultant/others here on the forum.

I am not a paralegal/immigration consultant or lawyer. All I do is share information as I find it via press releases, website updates etc.

As it has been posted several times, no one really knows for sure WHAT all the requirements will be, but there are a few "hints" and guidelines surfacing as posted at the start of this thread. (Initial post re. breaking news, etc.)

Immigration is a bit complicated now, in my opinion; but the waters should become clearer. smile.gif

I would hate it for people to miss their opportunity just because their credentials haven't been evaluated, or they suddenly find there are basic things they don't have ready by the time May 4th rolls around, for example not having FULL birth/marriage certificates, etc.

It is surprising, yet very human to overlook an item on a documents' list, so my encouragement to all potential applicants is to be prudent and watchful, as the "new" system comes into place.

Hope that makes things a bit clearer for you.smile.gif

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

PS. Nico Breedt and Cobus Kriek (both immigration lawyers in Canada), run this forum.

I am sure they will update us all re. this as and when news breaks.

It feels like we are all in the waiting room, waiting for the baby to be born!smile.gif

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

PS. Nico Breedt and Cobus Kriek (both immigration lawyers in Canada), run this forum.

I am sure they will update us all re. this as and when news breaks.

It feels like we are all in the waiting room, waiting for the baby to be born!smile.gif

I assume the member who disagreed with my post here did not realize that the immigration forum is is indeed hosted by Nico and Cobus.

Perhaps others don't realize it either.

Scroll down to the bottom and you will see their names. smile.gif

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lgonsalves

Not sure what you mean as there is nothing about the NOC list falling away.

The immigration minister's tweet last August said: Jason Kenney @kenneyjason@wandesure "The new Skilled Worker Program will be limited to applicants in NOCs 0, A, & B, but won't be limited to particular occupations." (see previous post)

Why I posted the previous comment re. the two NEW points to qualify, (Language/credentials' assessment) is because I have seen a few lawyers/immigration websites encourage people to BE READY to file by the time the new applications' phase starts on May 4th, 2013. For people who have never had their credentials evaluated or a language test done, it might just be prudent to look at these two points and discuss it with their lawyers/immigration consultant/others here on the forum.

I am not a paralegal/immigration consultant or lawyer. All I do is share information as I find it via press releases, website updates etc.

As it has been posted several times, no one really knows for sure WHAT all the requirements will be, but there are a few "hints" and guidelines surfacing as posted at the start of this thread. (Initial post re. breaking news, etc.)

Immigration is a bit complicated now, in my opinion; but the waters should become clearer. smile.gif

I would hate it for people to miss their opportunity just because their credentials haven't been evaluated, or they suddenly find there are basic things they don't have ready by the time May 4th rolls around, for example not having FULL birth/marriage certificates, etc.

It is surprising, yet very human to overlook an item on a documents' list, so my encouragement to all potential applicants is to be prudent and watchful, as the "new" system comes into place.

Hope that makes things a bit clearer for you.smile.gif

Thanks, the way I understood it is that the 29 occupation list falls away. Guess its all over going over my head. :blink:

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

This will be a very long post and may take two or three actual posts.

This was posted by the Canadian Govt. in Aug.2012 re. the proposed changes to immigration policies. Posted in the Government Gazette.

It helps to read the whole proposal to get more of an understanding (if possible!) smile.gif of what the proposals are all about:

ARCHIVED — Vol. 146, No. 33 — August 18, 2012

Regulations Amending the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations

Statutory authority

Immigration and Refugee Protection Act

Sponsoring department

Department of Citizenship and Immigration

REGULATORY IMPACT ANALYSIS STATEMENT

(This statement is not part of the Regulations.)

1. Executive summary

Issue: The Economic Action Plan 2012 announced the Government of Canada's intention to build a fast and flexible economic immigration selection system with a primary focus on meeting Canada's labour market needs. These needs are evolving, marked by an ageing workforce and an economy that has a growing requirement for highly skilled professionals, paired with emerging shortages in certain skilled trades. Limited access to the type of talent required by Canada's labour market inhibits economic growth. Federal economic immigration programs seek to supplement domestic labour supply by selecting highly skilled applicants with work experience in managerial, professional, technical or trade occupations. However, the current economic immigration selection criteria do not adequately respond to Canada's evolving labour market needs, given that some skilled workers admitted through the programs continue to have difficulty finding jobs in their field, and some employers also face challenges in finding the workers with the skills and qualifications they need.

Description: A three-pronged approach is proposed to better select skilled workers who meet Canada's current and evolving economic needs. It includes amendments to the Federal Skilled Worker Class (FSWC), the creation of a new Federal Skilled Trades Class (FSTC) and improvements to the Canadian Experience Class (CEC).

The Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR) establish the selection criteria for the FSWC and prescribe the weight given to each selection factor. Primarily, the proposed regulatory amendments to the FSWC would rebalance the points among the criteria to place greater importance on factors that are most strongly associated with successful economic outcomes, such as language abilities, Canadian work experience, and the ability to contribute to the Canadian labour market for a longer period before retirement. Prospective applicants would be required to have their foreign educational credentials assessed and would be awarded points based on the equivalent completed Canadian educational credential. Permanent job offers under the Arranged Employment factor, with some exceptions, would be subject to a labour market assessment, similar to that required for applicants under the Temporary Foreign Worker Class (TFWC). This would further solidify program integrity and assess the impact of the prospective skilled worker on the Canadian labour market, while streamlining the process for prospective employers.

This regulatory package also proposes to introduce a new class for skilled tradespersons. The proposed pass/fail selection model would be based on four selection criteria reflective of the education and training pathways in these occupations and would be more indicative of a skilled tradesperson's ability to work in Canada. The program would require an offer of employment in Canada or a certificate of qualification from a provincial authority in a skilled trade; a demonstrated proficiency in an official language; work experience in the skilled trade; and that the Canadian employment requirements, as described in the National Occupational Classification system, <a href="http://gazette.gc.ca/rp-pr/p1/2012/2012-08-18/html/reg2-eng.html#1"'>http://gazette.gc.ca/rp-pr/p1/2012/2012-08-18/html/reg2-eng.html#1" name="REF1" id="ref_REF1" style="color: rgb(102, 102, 51); ">(see footnote 1) are met.

Measures would also be taken regarding the CEC to ease the transition to permanent residence of temporary skilled workers who have demonstrated an ability to economically integrate in Canada by revising regulations to reduce the required number of months of Canadian work experience for qualification in the program.

Through the proposed regulatory amendments, skilled workers could apply under one of these three federal classes, primarily depending on their work experience and whether it was acquired in Canada. Those in managerial, professional or technical occupations could apply under the improved FSWC. Although applicants in the skilled trades could also apply under the FSWC, the criteria in the proposed FSTC would be better adapted to suit skilled tradespersons, should they have an offer of employment in Canada or a certificate of qualification from a provincial authority and meet the other proposed criteria. Skilled workers already employed in Canada could benefit from enhancements to the CEC.

Cost-benefit statement: The cost benefit analysis (CBA) estimates that the overall cost associated with the proposed amendments would be $8.3 million. The estimated overall benefit is $146.2 million, resulting in a net benefit of $138 million over 10 years or an average of $13.8 million per year. In addition to the monetized impacts, there are qualitative benefits and costs. Key qualitative benefits include the improved overall profile of federal skilled workers resulting from modified assessment criteria to better meet Canada's economic needs (i.e. minimum language proficiency, better assessment of foreign educational credentials, revised age points to attract younger applicants and enhanced adaptability factors). Taken together, these changes would result in the selection of skilled workers who are a better fit to the Canadian labour market. Other qualitative benefits would include the increased entry of skilled tradespersons into the labour market, benefits to employers who could gain from quicker access to the skilled talent they need, and the facilitation of the transition of temporary residents who have demonstrated an ability to integrate into the Canadian labour market and wish to apply for permanent residence under the CEC. Qualitative costs would include costs to provincial and territorial apprenticeship bodies of certifying skilled tradespersons in designated trades, should provinces and territories choose to increase their capacity to conduct more assessments.

Business and consumer impacts: This proposal is intended to benefit employers and applicants. By adapting the language, education, age and skill profile of skilled workers, newcomers selected under the FSWC and the FSTC would find employment that more closely matches their qualifications more quickly than they are able to under the current framework. Employers are expected to benefit by experiencing less time to access and train the skilled foreign workers they require. Administrative measures to enhance the program integrity of the Arranged Employment factor would mitigate the potential for fraud while assisting legitimate employers. These measures would seek to reduce the paper burden on employers and streamline the process for both employers and skilled workers with regard to offers of arranged employment.

2. Background

As one of the main avenues for permanent economic immigration to Canada, the Federal Skilled Worker Class (FSWC) responds to national and structural labour market needs by selecting immigrants based on their potential to become economically established in Canada. Each applicant’s essential and transferable skills are measured on a selection grid worth up to 100 points, and currently a minimum of 67 points is required to pass. Points are awarded for the candidate’s proficiency in one or both official languages, education, work experience, age, whether they have an indeterminate job offer in Canada (arranged employment), and their overall adaptability (such as previous work and study in Canada, an accompanying spouse / common-law partner’s education and the presence of relatives in Canada).

In 2011, approximately 37% of Canada’s economic immigrants were admitted through the FSWC (20 549 principal applicants plus 36 728 of their dependents). Of those, approximately 1 000 were skilled tradespersons, representing 1.9% of all permanent residents selected through this program. In addition, the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), the in-Canada immigration program begun in 2008, admitted 4% of Canada’s economic immigrants (3 973 principal applicants and 2 049 dependents), of whom 7.6% (458 permanent residents) were skilled tradespersons.

In the Economic Action Plan 2012 (Budget 2012), the Government of Canada announced its intention to build a fast and flexible economic immigration system with a primary focus on meeting Canada’s labour market needs. Specifically, the Plan stated the following:

To ensure that immigrants are ready to work, the assessment of educational credentials will be strengthened and the federal skilled worker point system will be reformed to reflect the importance of younger immigrants with Canadian work experience and better language skills.

The Government will provide further incentives to retain educated and experienced talent through the Canadian Experience Class and introduce a new stream to facilitate the entry of skilled tradespersons.

The points system was a Canadian innovation in the late 1960s. It was a method designed to reduce subjectivity in the selection of independent immigrants and select individuals with the education and skill level needed to propel the Canadian economy forward at a time of international industrial competition. The criteria were adapted in 2002, through the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA), to focus on the longer-term potential of human capital and factors associated with lifetime productivity and adaptability, such as education, language skills, and work experience. Several countries have since adapted the points-based selection model to their own circumstances, including Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, and Singapore.

3. Issue

Since the development of the Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) selection model, Canadian labour market needs have continued to evolve, marked by an ageing workforce and a growing demand for highly skilled professionals in the knowledge economy (e.g. specialized healthcare providers, information and communications technologies workers, and aerospace and other engineers). Employers in construction and natural resource sectors are also calling for workers to fill shortages in certain skilled trades.

Labour supply and demand projections forecast that two thirds of all new jobs created over the next decade are expected to be highly skilled occupations requiring postsecondary education, at university or college, or in skilled trades. However, research indicates that despite having higher levels of education than the general Canadian population, new immigrants continue to be subject to higher levels of unemployment and lower wages than Canadian-born workers. (see footnote 2) The top three barriers highly educated immigrants face in obtaining Canadian employment commensurate with their skills and education are the lack of official language skills, the non-transferability of their foreign credentials and a lack of Canadian work experience.(see footnote 3) (see footnote 4) In terms of economic outcomes, studies have shown that highly skilled immigrants have better labour market attachment and ultimately higher earnings. They are also more resilient during economic downturns.

Federal economic immigration programs seek to supplement domestic labour supply by selecting highly skilled applicants with work experience in managerial, professional, technical or trades occupations. In 2010, CIC evaluated the FSWC program. The program evaluation determined that it is producing positive results overall, but also suggested areas for improvement. The evaluation indicated that 22% of FSWs surveyed felt that their current job did not meet their expectations. The reasons for this, which are consistent with academic research on the difficulties faced by highly educated immigrants, include language barriers, the job not being in their intended occupation, and/or foreign education and experience not being recognized by Canadian employers. The evaluation recommended placing greater emphasis on full fluency in one of the official languages.

The evaluation also noted concerns regarding the integrity in the Arranged Employment (AE) factor, namely the use of fraudulent job offers to compensate for insufficient points in other areas. Subsequent quality assurance exercises conducted in visa offices abroad indicated trends in fraudulent job offers to make applicants eligible for priority processing under ministerial instructions (MI). (see footnote 5) The due diligence required to assess the validity of job offers is time consuming and can lead to lengthy wait times for applicants and the employers wishing to hire them.

The human capital model used in the FSWC suggests that better-educated workers could more readily adjust to an increasingly dynamic and competitive knowledge economy. However, although needed in the labour market, skilled tradespersons generally have more difficulty than applicants with advanced post-secondary academic credentials in obtaining sufficient points to pass the selection grid. In 2011, only a small proportion selected through the FSWC and the CEC — approximately 1 000, or 1.9%, of FSWs selected annually and 458, or 7.6%, of CECs — were tradespersons. With continuing and forecast shortages in certain skilled trades, (see footnote 6) many stakeholders are calling upon immigration to be part of the solution for trade workforce renewal.

Studies show that skilled workers with Canadian experience do better economically than those without.(see footnote 7) (see footnote 8) Although the CEC has been praised for its two-step immigration process which allows students and temporary workers to make the transition to permanent residence after acquiring Canadian work experience, the number of those doing so is still relatively small. The usual duration of temporary work permits currently creates a situation where most Temporary Foreign Workers (TFW) lose their status in Canada at the point where they would otherwise become eligible for the CEC. Canada risks losing qualified new immigrants if it does not take additional measures to facilitate the retention of these highly skilled workers.

Program changes are required to respond to Canada’s evolving economic needs.

4. Objectives

The main objectives of the proposed regulatory package are

  • (1) to improve the economic outcomes of principal applicants accepted in the FSWC, by selecting candidates who will be able to integrate more rapidly and successfully into the Canadian economy, and by increasing the integrity and
    labour market responsiveness of the Arranged Employment factor;
  • (2) to meet Canada’s skilled labour needs by reducing barriers to the immigration of skilled tradespersons; and
  • (3) to make permanent residence more accessible to skilled workers who have demonstrated an ability to integrate into the Canadian labour market.

Overall, the proposal intends to contribute to improving the Canadian economy and strengthening Canada’s position in the global competition for talent through the selection of highly qualified foreign national skilled workers.

5. Description

Citizenship and Immigration Canada is proposing a three-pronged approach through amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR) to improve economic immigration outcomes:

  • (a) Update the FSWC by rebalancing the points among existing criteria, introducing mandatory language thresholds, requiring an educational credential assessment at the time of application if the educational credential submitted is from a foreign jurisdiction, streamlining the arranged employment process, and reducing the potential for fraudulent job offers under the Arranged Employment factor;
  • (b) Introduce a new Federal Skilled Trades Class (FSTC) to facilitate the immigration of certain skilled tradespersons in Canada, in response to labour market needs; and
  • (c) Reduce the CEC work experience requirement to ease the transition to permanent residence of temporary skilled foreign workers who have demonstrated an ability to integrate into the Canadian labour market.
Under the proposed changes, skilled workers wishing to immigrate to Canada could apply under one of three separate classes, depending on their work experience and whether this work experience was acquired in Canada. Those in managerial, professional, or technical occupations could apply under the improved FSWC by specifying the primary occupation under which they would be assessed, while those in the skilled trades could benefit from criteria more reflective of the education and training pathways in these occupations through the proposed FSTC. In addition, TFW already in Canada in skilled occupations, and their employers, could benefit from a faster transition to permanent residence via the CEC. The proposed amendments are based on recent research, program evaluation results, consultation with stakeholders and best practices in other countries, such as Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. (see footnote 9)
These changes would affect prospective permanent resident applicants in professional, managerial, technical and trades occupations. As is currently the case, to be eligible for the FSWC and CEC, applicants must have work experience in one or more occupations listed in the National Occupation Classifications (NOC) matrix at Skill Type 0 (management occupations), Skill Level A (professional occupations), or Skill Level B (technical occupations and skilled trades). To qualify for the FSTC, only applicants with work experience in certain skilled trade occupations listed at Skill Level B would be eligible. Lower-skilled occupations requiring only secondary school and/or occupation-specific training (NOC Skill Level C), and those requiring only on-the-job training (NOC Skill Level D), would not be eligible.
(a) Revised FSWC points system for managers/professionals/technicians
Specific features of the regulatory changes proposed to the points system include the following.
  • Requiring a minimum level of language proficiency. CIC proposes to recognize the importance of language to socio-economic integration by (1) requiring minimum language abilities in order to qualify for the program; and (2) significantly increasing the maximum points awarded for fluency in one official language from 16 points to 24 points. Under the proposed Regulations, the Minister would fix the language threshold according to criteria set out in the Regulations. The Regulations would also provide that the Minister would communicate that threshold publicly. Initially, it is anticipated that the threshold would be set at Canadian Language Benchmark 7 (CLB 7) or Niveau de compétence linguistique canadien 7 (NCLC 7) for all four abilities (speaking, oral comprehension, reading and writing). This threshold corresponds to having “adequate intermediate proficiency.” The CLB and NCLC are recognized as the official Canadian standards for describing, measuring and recognizing the language proficiency of adult immigrants and prospective immigrants in both English and French.

The number of points for the second official language would be reduced from 8 points to 4 points, for abilities at level CLB 5 and above, in response to research and feedback from stakeholders, noting the lack of evidence that this factor contributes to positive economic outcomes for the majority of applicants. Bilingualism would continue to be rewarded in the selection system, in recognition of the IRPA’s objectives related to official language minority communities and respecting the bilingual character of Canada. With these changes, language proficiency would become the most important factor on the grid, representing a total of 28 points, an increase from 24 points, in recognition of its critical importance in ensuring positive economic outcomes.

  • Placing a greater emphasis on younger workers. Younger immigrants generally integrate more rapidly into the labour market, and they usually spend a greater number of years contributing to Canada’s economy. By contrast, immigrants aged 45 or older experience unemployment rates almost double those aged 25 to 34 years. (see footnote 10) The revised selection grid would favour younger immigrants by awarding a maximum of 12 points for applicants aged 18 to 35, compared to applicants aged 21 to 49 who receive maximum points for age under the current grid, with diminishing points awarded until age 46. With the proposed changes, no age points would be awarded after age 46; however, workers aged 47 or older would continue to be eligible for the program.
  • Redirecting points from work experience. Foreign work experience is largely discounted by Canadian employers when the immigrant first enters the Canadian labour market, and it is a weak predictor of economic success. (see footnote 11)CIC is proposing to reduce the total number of points for work experience from 21 to 15, and increase the years of experience required to achieve full points, from four years to six. (see footnote 12)These changes will reflect the relative value Canadian employers place on foreign work experience, and redirect points to language and age factors, which are better indicators of success in the Canadian labour market.
  • Requiring a foreign educational credential assessment and changing education points. Currently, education points are based on having a credential and the number of years required to obtain it. Organizations with expertise in authentication and assessment of foreign educational credentials and professional bodies recognized by provincial regulatory bodies will be eligible to apply for designation by CIC to provide credential assessment and authentication for FSWC purposes. Designated organizations would work on a case-by-case basis to authenticate credentials obtained in foreign jurisdictions and determine their equivalent value in Canada. This measure would allow CIC to benefit from a better assessment of the quality of a foreign educational credential. Applicants whose credentials do not exist in Canada as well as those who do not have a credential equivalent to a completed Canadian credential would not be eligible for the FSWC.

Education points would be awarded based on the equivalent Canadian educational credential and points would be redistributed in recognition of the credential’s relevance in the Canadian labour market.

In the case of applicants who have listed a regulated occupation in their application, where a professional body has been designated by CIC to conduct such assessments, the applicant must submit that professional body’s foreign educational credential assessment establishing that the foreign educational credential is equivalent to the Canadian educational credential required to practice that occupation.

Furthermore, should the assessment of an applicant’s credential by a professional body not demonstrate that the credential is equivalent to the Canadian credential required for the occupation listed in the application, the applicant will not be eligible to apply in the Federal Skilled Worker Class under that occupation.

All other applicants must submit a foreign educational credential assessment provided by a designated organization to demonstrate that their educational credential is equivalent to a Canadian educational credential.

  • Streamlining the arranged employment process and reducing the potential for fraudulent job offers. The evaluation of the FSWC showed that people who immigrate with a valid job offer do very well in Canada, earning 79% more in wages in the first three years after arrival than people without arranged employment. However, it also demonstrated that a more rigorous assessment of the employer and job offer is needed to curb fraud. Stakeholders also called on CIC to improve overall processing times of applications with arranged employment, both at Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) and CIC.
The specific objectives of this particular proposed amendment are (1) to increase the integrity of the arranged employment factor by enhancing the genuineness assessment and labour market impact through the addition of measures such as the requirement that employers demonstrate that they have tried to first recruit and train Canadians for an available position; and (2) to improve labour market responsiveness by providing a faster and more streamlined process for employers and applicants.
With the proposed changes, employers would be required to apply for a labour market opinion (LMO) to HRSDC, whether it is in support of a temporary work permit application and/or a permanent residence application. Eliminating the arranged employment opinion (AEO) and replacing it with the LMO is intended to reduce the burden on employers in the event the worker seeks to apply for permanent residence concurrently with a temporary work permit application. Using all rather than some of the LMO assessment factors already used for the Temporary Foreign Worker Class (TFWC) would enable a consistent and streamlined process for applicants and employers. These factors include the labour market impact of the entry of the foreign workers as it relates for example to wages, working conditions, recruitment efforts, labour shortages, and the genuineness of the job offer and the employer. The LMO would reduce the potential for fraudulent job offers, thus contributing to improved program integrity, and ensure that the job offer meets broader Canadian labour market objectives. Returning employers with good program compliance records may be eligible for accelerated LMO processing. FSWC applicants with a positive or neutral LMO from HRSDC could be awarded up to 15 points on the selection grid.
For programming consistency and integrity, CIC and HRSDC would also extend the TFWC’s “substantially the same” (see footnote 13) compliance-related assessment of wages, working conditions and occupations, along with extending the TFWC list of ineligible employers to also include non-compliant employers in the FSWC and the FSTC. Some exceptions to the requirement for an LMO would apply with respect to labour mobility provisions under international agreements such as NAFTA and GATS. In these instances, employers would need to demonstrate to CIC that they are making a qualifying job offer (i.e. non-seasonal and indeterminate).
  • Changing the adaptability factors. CIC is proposing changes to the adaptability criteria to emphasize factors that are shown to have positive impacts on an immigrant’s economic and social integration. As employers value workers with Canadian work experience, the maximum number of points (10) would be awarded if the principal applicant (PA) has qualifying previous work experience in Canada. The points for their previous study in Canada would remain the same (5).

Furthermore, the 2010 evaluation noted concerns about points for spousal education since the economic outcomes of most applicants who received points for spousal education were the same as those who did not receive them. Visa officers also observed that many spouses / common-law partners had never worked in their field. Consultation feedback encouraged replacing the spousal education adaptability factor with spousal basic language proficiency to improve the likelihood of a family’s successful integration and to reduce spousal vulnerability. Given the overall importance of language proficiency for successful establishment, CIC proposes to proceed with this change.

To be awarded points for their previous study in Canada, the applicant or accompanying spouse would need to have obtained, studying full time in a program of at least a two-year duration, the necessary credits to successfully complete two years of study. For the purposes of adaptability, secondary school will be accepted as an eligible program of study.

The evaluation also noted that having a relative in Canada did not improve economic outcomes for skilled workers. However, in an effort to recognize other benefits that can be associated with having an adult relative in Canada, CIC would be introducing minimum age criteria to increase the likelihood that the relative will be able to play a role in facilitating the economic and social integration of the applicant.

Adaptability points will not be awarded for spouses who are Canadian citizens or permanent residents living in Canada, as they can sponsor applicants through the Family Class.

  • Settlement funds. Applicants already working in Canada or authorized to work in Canada have demonstrated their ability to enter the Canadian labour market and financially support themselves. Currently all applicants with qualifying offers of arranged employment in Canada are exempt from providing proof of settlement funds, whether they are working in Canada or not. The proposed regulations would amend the exemption so that it would no longer apply points to recipients of arranged employment who are not working or authorized to work in Canada. All other applicants would be required to provide proof of settlement funds.

http://gazette.gc.ca/rp-pr/p1/2012/2012-08-18/html/reg2-eng.html

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

Following the post I just made on the previous page:

The following table outlines the proposed amendments to the FSWC points system: please go to http://gazette.gc.ca...l/reg2-eng.html and scroll down to the table.

The proposed amendments would not alter the number of FSW visas issued annually. Annual levels set by CIC and approved by Parliament specify a limit on the number of immigrants admitted to Canada each year under the FSWC.

Edited by Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

3rd post from Government Gazette:

(b) New dedicated skilled trades class

The new FSTC would be open to skilled tradespersons with experience in the following NOC B occupational areas: Industrial, Electrical and Construction Trades; Maintenance and Equipment Operation Trades; Supervisors and Technical Occupations in Natural Resources, Agriculture and Related Production; Processing, Manufacturing and Utilities Supervisors and Central Control Operators; as well as Chefs and Cooks, and Bakers and Butchers.

Applicants to the proposed program would be required to meet four minimum requirements:

  • A qualifying offer of employment from up to two employers in Canada of at least one year duration (see footnote 14) or a Certificate of Qualification from a provincial or territorial Apprenticeship Authority;
  • Language proficiency, as evidenced by a test from a designated language testing organization that demonstrates the applicant's abilities in the requisite skill areas meet the threshold set by the Minister in all four language abilities (speaking, reading, writing, oral comprehension);
  • Twenty-four months of work experience (after qualification/certification in the country where the work was performed, where applicable) in the same skilled trade in the last five years; and
  • Qualifications that satisfy employment requirements as described by the NOC, except for certification and licensing requirements, which are difficult to obtain outside Canada.

The requirement to have a job offer for one year is in recognition of the project-based and seasonal nature of many trade occupations. Allowing up to two employers to commit to employing the applicant for at least one year of continuous full-time employment is intended to allow flexibility for the employers, while ensuring that the applicant is gainfully employed for the first year after arrival. This work experience could assist the applicant in meeting certification requirements, if required, and would provide him/her with important Canadian work experience, which is key to economic success.

Apprenticeship training and trade certification is a provincial/ territorial jurisdiction; each province/territory is responsible for designating trades in their jurisdiction and for setting the certification requirements. The Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Program(see footnote 15) covers approximately 81% of registered apprentices in Canada. Where provinces/territories participate in the Red Seal trades, common interprovincial standards and examinations exist. However, there are many trades where common standards do not exist. Furthermore, provincial and territorial authorities vary on which skilled trades require certification (compulsory trades) and which do not (voluntary trades).

A Certificate of Qualification by a province/territory apprenticeship authority is the best way to ensure the applicant's ability to perform the work, and to ensure that the applicant is authorized to work in his/her intended province or territory of residence. It is also a likely predictor of employability, interprovincial labour mobility and long-term labour market integration. However, because of the difficulty of meeting some of the Canadian requirements (which may include Canadian work experience) prior to arrival in Canada, applicants could alternatively provide a qualifying job offer.

To qualify for this program, a qualifying job offer is especially suitable for the voluntary (unregulated) trades, where provincial or territorial certification and licensing are not required. The employment offer is considered to be recognition by an employer of the applicant's ability to perform the work.

Employers could also offer jobs to skilled tradespersons in the compulsory trades, and employers and employees would have the responsibility of observing the regulations in their province or territory. In compulsory trades, tradespersons must either have the appropriate certification or be registered as apprentices. Therefore, employers must support candidates in obtaining the required Certificate of Qualification in their province/territory, or register them as apprentices during a qualification assessment period until they are certified.

As with the FSWC, given the importance of language as a determinant of successful economic establishment and to ensure that health and safety standards are upheld, applicants would need to meet a language threshold determined by the Minister for each of the four language abilities (speaking, reading, writing, oral comprehension). As with the FSWC, the Regulations would require the Minister to communicate that threshold publicly. Initially, the threshold is anticipated to be set at CLB/NCLC 5 for all four abilities (speaking, oral comprehension, reading and writing).

The applicant's likelihood to economically establish in a skilled trade would be further verified by requiring them to have at least 24 months of recent work experience in the same skilled trade occupation as their job offer and/or the provincial/territorial certificate of qualification. The work experience must have been obtained after qualification/certification in the country where the work was performed, where applicable. For this purpose, the applicant must have performed a substantial number of the main duties listed in the description of the occupation set out in the NOC, which means, as with the FSWC, that they have performed the essential duties of the occupation. Furthermore, the applicant would be required to demonstrate that they meet the employment requirements for that skilled trade as described by NOC, except for certification and licensing requirements that are difficult to obtain outside Canada.

As with the FSWC, the Regulations would also enable officers to substitute their evaluation if they determine that the applicant's ability to meet or not the minimum requirements of the class is not a sufficient indicator of whether the skilled worker may become economically established in Canada.

(c) Modification to the Canadian Experience Class

The proposal would also simplify the CEC to facilitate the transition to permanent resident status of temporary foreign skilled workers who have demonstrated that they can be employed in Canada, and to better align the CEC with other economic immigration programs that require less work experience (e.g. provincial nominee programs). (see footnote 16)

The Canadian work experience requirement would be reduced from 24 months to 12 in the preceding 36 months, to allow faster transition for those who have already proven their employability in Canada's labour market. Accumulating 12 months of authorized work within the preceding 36 is more flexible for applicants working in Canada under international agreements (e.g. International Experience Canada). Only applicants with NOC 0, A or B work experience would continue to qualify for the CEC.

The CEC regulations currently allow applicants to compensate for a lower level in one language ability with a higher level in another, resulting in a process that is complicated and confusing for both applicants and visa officers. In researching the introduction of language thresholds to the FSWC, CIC's panel of language experts and designated third-party language testing agencies strongly recommended applying the threshold across all four abilities (reading, writing, oral comprehension and speaking). Accordingly, it is proposed that a minimum language threshold would be required in each of the four abilities for applicants to the CEC. As with the FSWC, the proposed Regulations would grant the Minister the authority to set the language threshold. Initially, it is anticipated that the threshold would be set at CLB/NCLC 7, which corresponds to having "adequate intermediate proficiency" in speaking, oral comprehension, reading and writing for NOC 0 and A applicants and CLB/NCLC 5, or "initial intermediate" proficiency in each ability for NOC B applicants.

6. Regulatory and non-regulatory options considered

The IRPA gives the Governor in Council the power to adopt regulations prescribing selection criteria and their weight for economic immigration. The proposed amendments to the IRPR are necessary to design the economic immigration programs to meet Canada's changing economic needs.

Various options for the regulatory changes to the FSWC were considered along a continuum, first starting with changes to the language, age and work experience factors. As a result of evidence garnered from the program evaluation, and feedback received through consultations, more comprehensive changes to all of the selection factors in the FSWC were developed to better assess applicants according to Canada's economic needs. Options were incremental, each pushing further in terms of degree of change and becoming more stringent.

The minimal option for changes to the FSWC would have added minimum language requirements, differentiated by skill level (reading, writing, oral comprehension and speaking) without changing the point structure of the selection grid. Language competency was considered one of the most critical areas requiring change, as supported by evidence.

Adding modest changes to points for language, age, and work experience would help refine the grid to put weight where it counts in the labour market, and select applicants that are younger and have strong language proficiency. A rectification to the system of counting both years of education and having foreign educational credentials was proposed at consultations as a means of helping technicians and skilled tradespersons to qualify for the FSWC. Although the intent was supported by stakeholders, CIC was urged to make more profound changes to the education factor.

More aggressive point changes were considered; they would have reduced work experience points by half, thereby giving even more weight to age and language.

The introduction of mandatory foreign education credential assessment was determined to be the most effective way for awarding education points rather than using years of study as a proxy for an international credential's value in Canada.

Finally, the inclusion of the FSTC would provide a selection mechanism better suited to skilled tradespersons, as well as mitigate the barriers they would likely face in the new FSWC points grid.

The option retained included all of the above variables, thus the regulatory amendments would

  • Update the FSWC selection grid to
    • (i) rebalance the points among existing criteria,
    • (ii) introduce mandatory language thresholds,
      (iii) require an educational credential assessment by a designated organization, in order to allot points based on a foreign educational credential's value in Canada and to better screen out fraudulent or "low-value" credentials, and
    • (iv) streamline the arranged employment process and reduce the potential for fraudulent job offers under the arranged employment factor;

    [*]Introduce a new FSTC to mitigate barriers to the entry of skilled tradespersons to Canada, in response to labour market needs; and[*]Ease the transition to permanent residence of TFWs who are economically established in Canada by reducing the CEC work experience requirement for the TFW stream.

By making changes to the FSWC and creating the FSTC, the proposed options include measures to better select skilled workers who have the skills and abilities demonstrated to more quickly integrate into the labour market once they arrive in Canada. Changes to the CEC mean that those who are working in Canada would be able to stay more easily, which would benefit both applicants and employers. As a whole, this regulatory package would assist in creating a better fit between skilled workers selected for permanent residence and the needs of the labour market.

The changes that are considered incremental to the baseline and for which impacts are measured are

  • The impact of modifications to the points grid on the average profile of a skilled worker. These changes include a minimum language threshold, education credentials that are assessed to provide a Canadian equivalent prior to selection, and new processes for those with arranged employment.
  • The introduction of a new federal skilled trades class for workers with NOC B experience in the following occupational areas: industrial, electrical and construction trades; maintenance and equipment operation trades; supervisors and technical occupations in natural resources, agriculture and related production; processing, manufacturing and utilities supervisors and central control operators; as well as the occupations of chefs, cooks, bakers and butchers. The proposed program would have four minimum requirements that must be met:
    1. An offer of employment for at least one year or a certificate of qualification from a provincial or territorial authority;
    2. Language proficiency, as evidenced by a test from a designated language testing agency to meet a threshold as set by the Minister in all four language abilities;
    3. Twenty-four months of skilled work experience (after qualification/certification) in the same qualifying skilled trades occupation in the last five years; and
    4. Qualification — satisfy employment requirements as described by the NOC aside from licensing/certification requirements which cannot be met outside of Canada.

<li>The ability for some to apply under the CEC after one year rather than two years of work experience in Canada at NOC 0, A or B.

http://gazette.gc.ca...l/reg2-eng.html

7. Benefits and costs

The table below provides an overview of the cost-benefit analysis study results. The analysis period is 10 years, starting in 2013 and ending in 2022. All costs and benefits are forecast over that period and are expressed in constant dollars. All costs and benefits in net present values (NPV) were calculated using a discount rate of 7%.

Based on the analysis of incremental impacts of these regulatory proposals, the total estimated cost is approximately $8.3 million (NPV) and the total monetized benefits is $146.2 million (NPV), resulting in a net benefit of $138 million over the analysis period, or an average of $13.8 million per year. In addition to the monetized impacts, there are qualitative benefits, which include

  • improved economic outcomes for FSWC principal applicants with corollary benefits to the Canadian economy as a result of changes to the selection grid, which would increase the value of the average skilled worker's skills to the labour market;
  • increased number of skilled tradespersons entering the labour market, resulting in an economic benefit to employers who would be able to better access the type of skilled labour they need;
  • improved integrity in the arranged employment factor, which is expected to reduce fraudulent job offers by introducing a labour market assessment; and
  • retention of established temporary foreign skilled workers by modifying the Canadian Experience Class to ease the transition to permanent residence for qualified temporary residents with skilled Canadian work experience who have a demonstrated ability to economically establish themselves in Canada.
Qualitative costs may include a possible impact on provincial and territorial apprenticeship authorities, which may face a potential increase in the number of skilled tradespersons arriving in Canada, as potential applicants already working temporarily in Canada and newcomers with arranged employment seek provincial/territorial certification in designated trades. Possible impacts could include impacts on applicants, should wait times for certification lengthen, and a potential cost to provinces and territories, should this impact occur and they respond with increased investments in the certification process.
Cost-benefit statement
See table at website
7. Benefits and costs
The table below provides an overview of the cost-benefit analysis study results. The analysis period is 10 years, starting in 2013 and ending in 2022. All costs and benefits are forecast over that period and are expressed in constant dollars. All costs and benefits in net present values (NPV) were calculated using a discount rate of 7%.
Based on the analysis of incremental impacts of these regulatory proposals, the total estimated cost is approximately $8.3 million (NPV) and the total monetized benefits is $146.2 million (NPV), resulting in a net benefit of $138 million over the analysis period, or an average of $13.8 million per year. In addition to the monetized impacts, there are qualitative benefits, which include
  • improved economic outcomes for FSWC principal applicants with corollary benefits to the Canadian economy as a result of changes to the selection grid, which would increase the value of the average skilled worker's skills to the labour market;
  • increased number of skilled tradespersons entering the labour market, resulting in an economic benefit to employers who would be able to better access the type of skilled labour they need;
  • improved integrity in the arranged employment factor, which is expected to reduce fraudulent job offers by introducing a labour market assessment; and
  • retention of established temporary foreign skilled workers by modifying the Canadian Experience Class to ease the transition to permanent residence for qualified temporary residents with skilled Canadian work experience who have a demonstrated ability to economically establish themselves in Canada.

Qualitative costs may include a possible impact on provincial and territorial apprenticeship authorities, which may face a potential increase in the number of skilled tradespersons arriving in Canada, as potential applicants already working temporarily in Canada and newcomers with arranged employment seek provincial/territorial certification in designated trades. Possible impacts could include impacts on applicants, should wait times for certification lengthen, and a potential cost to provinces and territories, should this impact occur and they respond with increased investments in the certification process.

Cost-benefit statement

See table at website :

Edited by Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

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Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell

This is important:

Assessment of foreign credentials

CIC has announced changes to the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), including the introduction of Educational Credential Assessment – a mandatory requirement that Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) principal applicants have their non-Canadian education assessed against education standards in Canada by designated organizations.

This requirement will take effect in May 2013.

The list of organizations authorized to complete ECA reports will be announced in early 2013. Check back regularly for updates on designated organizations and details on when and how to apply for an Educational Credential Assessment.

Education is an asset when searching for work in Canada, but your education may not automatically be recognized here. Demonstrating your education and academic credentials is, therefore, important. Understanding educational equivalencies between your country of origin and Canada will also help you understand the kinds of jobs you will be qualified for in Canada.

The following are important steps in getting your credentials recognized in Canada:

Note: Use the Planning to Work in Canada workbook to keep track of what you learn.

reate a Working in Canada Report

Use the Working in Canada Tool to create a report that will tell you whether your job is in a regulated occupation and help you find the correct regulatory body or apprenticeship authority. The report will also give you information that will help you find a job, including the following:

  • A definition of your job, as well as other job titles in your occupational group. Knowing the proper Canadian name for the job or occupation you want can help you avoid confusion with employers
  • The main duties for the job in the city and province or territory you have chosen
  • The skills required for this job
  • Job opportunities
  • Training opportunities
  • The typical hourly wage for this job in the city and province or territory you have chosen
  • Contact information for the regulatory body or apprenticeship authority

Find out whether there are Occupation Facts for your profession
Occupation Facts will tell you what you can do while you are waiting to come to Canada, guide you through the process of foreign credential recognition and outline the general requirements you must meet to work in your profession in Canada.
Compare your qualifications
  • Compare your qualifications with the requirements for licensing, certification or registration to work in that job in the province or territory where you would like to live.
  • Decide what you need to do to meet those requirements.

You may also need to compare your language skills with those required for your profession. Most professions and trades require you to be fluent in English or French and to have a strong command of all work-related language. They may require you to have a proof that you have attained a specific language level. Take steps while you are still in your home country toimprove your language skills.

Contact a regulatory body or assessment agency

Contact the regulatory body or apprenticeship authority for your profession in your province or territory or visit its website to determine what you need to do to obtain a licence or certification. You will have to prove that your training, experience and other skills are equivalent to the standards that people trained in Canada must also meet.

Note: In many cases, you can have your academic credentials assessed and begin applying for a licence or certificate before you leave your home country. The regulatory body or apprenticeship authority can tell you what steps you can take before you arrive in Canada.

Collect your documents

There are many documents related to your education and your experience that help regulatory bodies, assessment agencies or employers understand your international qualifications. Before you come to Canada, you can identify and gather documents that you may need after you arrive.

Any documents you can produce that prove your educational record, professional training and work experience will help you in your search for a job in Canada. They will help you and potential employers understand your qualifications. When applying for licensing, certification or registration in a regulated occupation, such documents are required.

Documents you may require include the following:

  • Degrees, diplomas or certificates from universities, colleges, secondary schools or trade schools
  • Program descriptions or syllabi related to your studies; transcripts of grades
  • Letters from professional and other regulatory bodies
  • Apprenticeship or professional certificates
  • Letters from employers, performance reviews
  • Work descriptions for jobs you have done
  • Letters of reference from former employers
In some cases, the regulatory body, employer, credential assessment agency or educational institution may require that official documents be sent directly from schools or other organizations to Canada. Before you leave for Canada, check with the appropriate organization to find out what its requirements are.
Getting documents translated
You may need to have your documents translated into English, French or both. Check the website or contact the regulatory body or apprenticeship authority to find out about the translation requirements including the following:
  • Whether you need to use an approved translation service (If so, you will have to pay for the translation.)
  • Whether original documents are required or whether you will need a lawyer to notarize copies
  • Whether certified translations are required

Missing documents

If you cannot get the documents you need to confirm your education, skills and experience, contact the regulatory body or apprenticeship authority and ask them how you should proceed.

Consult an approved assessment agency

If you do not have to get your credentials assessed as part of the licensing process, consider having an assessment done by an approved assessment agency so that you can show employers how your training compares with that of people trained in Canada.

Determine whether you need to upgrade your skills or education

Once you have received your assessment, you will be able to determine whether you need to upgrade your skills or your education for your intended occupation. If so, you will need to find a course of study at an educational institution near where you plan to live where you can obtain the required training.

There are several ways that you can research the continuing education and training opportunities available to you in Canada to qualify to work in the job you want in the city and province or territory you have chosen:

  • Read the Education and Training section of your Working in Canada Report.
  • Read the Licence and Certification section of your report for information on the required education for regulated occupations, as well as links to the websites of professional regulatory bodies and apprenticeship agencies, where you may find more information.
  • Visit the Government of Canada's Training, Career and Worker Information website.
  • Visit the Red Seal Program website to find out about the 49 skilled trades in Canada (for example, welder, bricklayer, hairstylist, tile setter).
  • If you are looking for a job or a change in your career, you may want to learn what you need to do to improve your skills. Developing your essential skills can help you get a job, succeed at work and adapt to change.

Note: The recognition process is different in each province or territory and for each profession or trade. If you need to have your credentials assessed for further study at a Canadian post-secondary education institution, contact the Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials. It assists professionals, employers and organizations with foreign credential recognition and the assessment of diplomas and qualifications in Canada.

http://www.credentia.../assessment.asp

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