Canada to overhaul Caregiver Programme

The Canadian government last week announced a range of amendments designed to improve the country’s Caregiver immigration programme.

Among the key changes to the programme are reforms that end the live-in requirement (meaning the carer no longer has to live with the person or people they are caring for), and providing eligible caregivers with two pathways that will lead to permanent residence within six months.

One pathway features criteria for childcare providers that are very similar to current requirements, but without the need for the caregiver to live in the home of their employer.

In addition, caregivers in a variety of healthcare occupations, including registered nurses, registered psychiatric nurses, licensed practical nurses, nurse aides, orderlies, patient service associates and home support workers, will also have a pathway to permanent residence.

Eligible caregivers in this stream would be able to gain their work experience either in providing in-home care or care in a health-care facility to an elderly person or a person with a disability or chronic medical condition. This pathway offers more career options for eligible caregivers, and targets workers in occupations that are expected to face labour shortages in the future. Applications in this stream would also be processed within six months.

“We have listened to the concerns of caregivers across Canada and have taken action to improve Canada’s Caregiver Programme,” said Chris Alexander, Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister. “Our government’s changes protect caregivers from abuse and reduce family separation. With our improvements caregivers will be provided with more pathways towards permanent residence and will have the tools they need to achieve success in the Canadian labour market.”

The Government of Canada has also pledged to reduce the backlog of applications for permanent residence through the Live-in Caregiver Programme. As part of the 2015 Levels Plan tabled last week, Canada will welcome 30,000 new permanent residents in this category. Reducing the backlog and processing times will mean that eligible caregivers will be reunited sooner with their families.

Caregivers who have already applied for Live-in Caregiver Programme work permits, and any who apply based on an employer’s approved Labour Market Impact Assessment submitted before 30th November, will also be able to complete the work requirement on a live-in basis and eventually apply for permanent residence.

To find out more information about the Caregiver Programme, visit:

Article published 5th November 2014