Senator Enverga poses questions about Work Permits issued to Caregivers to the Government Representative in the Senate
Many Kababayans here in Canada are very familiar with the long wait times associated with the processing of applications for our Caregiver Program. Under the Trudeau government, the processing time for these applications has soared to an astounding 47 months, which is essentially four years! The adversity that these caregivers face in having to wait years to be reunited with their families is an unfair and undue hardship. Trying to find out what the government is going to do to shorten this processing time, the Honourable Tobias C. Enverga Jr., Senator from Ontario, asked the Government Representative in the Senate the following question during the Senate’s Question Period:
Hon. Tobias C. Enverga, Jr.: My question is for the Leader of the Government in the Senate. This is actually a question for the minister from a couple of days ago.
I had asked a question of his predecessor last fall, and I was unable to receive an adequate answer at that time, so I will try again now. My question is about the caregiver program and the unacceptable wait times for applicants in this category.
As you know, thousands of persons come to Canada each year to assist our society, performing caregiver jobs for children, the sick and elderly. Many of the caregivers are from the Philippines and they are mainly women. The deal for these caregivers in Canada is that after two years of service, they can apply for permanent residency here.
The processing time for these applications has increased from 39 months to the current 47 months. That is almost four years. Adding the two years of service, the applicants are away from their families for at least six years.
What are the minister and the department doing to shorten the processing time and limit the hardship suffered by these caregivers, including family break-up and alienation from children and spouses caused by their lengthy absence?
The only thing that has been done so far is the lowering of the quota for this class by 4,000, which has totally the opposite effect. How does this support IRCC’s gender-based analysis policy that the department supposedly undertakes, considering that it mainly affects women?
Hon. Peter Harder (Government Representative in the Senate): Like the honourable senator, I wish he had time to ask the minister. As a consequence, I will inquire of the minister and report back.