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Canadian Government announces new ‘super visa’ in effort to deal with backlog

by | Nov 17, 2011

The Canadian Government will stop accepting permanent residency applications from parents and grandparents of Canadian residents, announcing a new ‘super visa’ as a replacement. In an effort to clear the 165,000-strong backlog of permanent residency applications, Canadian immigration minister Jason Kenney has this week flagged changes to the family reunification system. ‘Wait times for Family Class sponsorship applications for parents and grandparents now exceed seven years, and without taking action, those times will continue to grow, and that is unacceptable’, Mr Kenney said. ‘Action must be taken to cut the backlog, reduce the wait times, and ensure that the parents and grandparents program is sustainable over the long run.’ The action proposed by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) authorities is to stop accepting and processing permanent residency applications from parents and granparents of citizens and residents for a period of two years. Over this hiatus CIC intends to boost the number of parents and grandparents entering Canada by issuing a new Canada visa valid for extended stays of up to two years. CIC expects that the grandly named ‘Parent and Grandparent Super Visa’ will increase the number admitted by more than 60% in 2012. The visa is conditional on a number of requirements including proof of private medical insurance, and a ‘written commitment of financial support from a child or grandchild in Canada who meets a minimum income threshold’. CIC claims it will issue these ‘super visas’ within eight weeks of application.

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