As Canada continues to be a beacon for those seeking new horizons, 2024 brings with it exciting news for aspiring immigrants. Two immigration programs are set to reopen their doors to new applicants, offering diverse pathways to individuals eager to make Canada their home. In this article, we explore the details of these programs, shedding light on eligibility, benefits, and how to embark on your Canadian journey. These pathways offer Canadian permanent residency for workers in the pilot programs, which we are describing in detail in this article.
1. Caregivers Pilot Programs
A trial immigration scheme called the Caregiver Program enables home child care providers and home support providers to be eligible for permanent residency (PR) in Canada. This program allows caregivers to immigrate to Canada to care for children, seniors, or people with disabilities. In 2019, the previous caregiver programs—the Caring for Children and Caring for People with High Medical Needs pilots—was superseded by the new Caregiver immigration pilot program. The reason why the old program was replaced with a new one was because an employer could only engage a caregiver through a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), and the caregiver was required to work for the same employer under the old strategy, which was employer-driven and employer-specific. Now, the new caregiver program is employer-driven rather than employer-specific, which means that while companies in Canada must still go through the LMIA procedure, caregivers can still be hired by them. The second benefit of the new program is that it permits the primary applicant’s spouse and dependent children to enter at the work permit stage as well.
Caregiver program eligibility:
- Have a valid full-time job offer from a Canadian employer (a private home where care will be provided to a child or children or high medical needs patent (s)).
- Have education, training, or experience in the same occupation [Home Child Care Provider (NOC 4411) or Home Support Worker (NOC 4412)] under which you are applying.
- Have CLB 5 in English or French.
- Have one year of Canadian post-secondary education or have an equivalent foreign education (ECA report is required for overseas education).
- Be admissible to Canada.
The Caregivers Pilot Programs are designed to address the critical demand for caregiving services in Canada. Comprising two distinct streams—the Home Child Care Provider Pilot and the Home Support Worker Pilot—these programs offer skilled caregivers the opportunity to contribute their expertise while pursuing a pathway to Canadian permanent residency.
- Home Child Care Provider Pilot: Tailored for those providing in-home childcare services, such as Babysitter, Child care live-in caregiver, Child care provider – private home, Nanny, Parent’s helper, Babysitter – fitness centre, Babysitter – shopping centre
- Home Support Worker Pilot: Geared towards individuals offering home support to seniors or those with disabilities, such as Attendant for persons with disabilities – home care, Family caregiver, Home support worker, Live-in caregiver – seniors, Personal aide – home support, Personal care attendant – home care, Respite worker – home support.
IRCC has reduced the eligibility requirement to 12-month experience for in-Canada caregiver provider pilots from their previous 24-month experience.
2. Agri-Food Pilot Programs
This program is designed to bridge the gap between the agricultural industry’s labor needs and the aspirations of skilled foreign workers, this program represents a unique opportunity for individuals passionate about contributing to Canada’s agri-food sector. The Agri-Food Pilot Program is a pathway that facilitates the entry of skilled workers into Canada’s agri-food industry. Launched to address labor shortages in specific occupations, the program connects employers with skilled workers who possess the expertise needed to contribute to the growth and success of the sector.
One of the program’s unique aspects is its potential to lead to Canadian permanent residency. Successful candidates have the opportunity to transition from temporary work permits to becoming permanent residents of Canada. The maximum annual limit is 2,750 applications. In May of this year, an extension was made to the Agri-Food Pilot Program until May 14, 2025.
To be eligible for the Agri-Food Pilot Program, applicants must meet specific criteria, including:
- Relevant Work Experience: 12 months of full-time, non-seasonal Canadian work experience in one of the eligible occupations in the Temporary Foreign Worker Program;
- Language Proficiency: qualified applicants simply need to have CLB level 4 in English/French.
- Education: A Canadian equivalent of a high school diploma or higher. If you studied outside of Canada, you must have an educational credential assessment (ECA) report from a recognised organisation
Regardless of their occupation code, family members of Agri-Food Pilot applicants will be eligible for a Canadian open work visa. Participants in the trial program who live in Canada will be able to choose between fulfilling the requirements for education, which includes verifying educational credentials, OR the job offer requirement, which includes meeting the median income criterion for the job offer.
Eligible industries For Agri-Food Pilot Program
Eligible industries under the pilot are:
- meat product manufacturing (NAICS 3116)
- greenhouse, nursery and floriculture production, including mushroom production (NAICS 1114)
- animal production, excluding aquaculture
- cattle ranching and farming (NAICS 1121)
- hog and pig farming (NAICS 1122)
- poultry and egg production (NAICS 1123)
- sheep and goat farming (NAICS 1124)
- other animal production (NAICS 1129)
As Canada continues to position itself as a global leader in agriculture and agri-food innovation, the Agri-Food Pilot Program stands as a testament to the nation’s dedication to attracting skilled individuals who can contribute to the sector’s ongoing success.
Immigration consultants play a crucial role in assisting applicants with pilot programs in Canada, including the Agri-Food and Caregivers Pilot Programs. We can help applicants understand the specific criteria, eligibility, and documentation needed for programs such as Agri-Food and Caregivers, ensuring that applicants are well-prepared. By providing personalized guidance based on individual circumstances, we assess the client’s qualifications, work experience, and education to determine the most suitable pilot program.
Both the Agri-Food and Caregivers Pilot Programs offer a pathway to Canadian permanent residency. We, as consultants, guide the applicants through the steps required to transition from a temporary work permit to permanent residency, helping them understand the long-term benefits and implications.