'Brain gain' pilot project launched in Ontario
31 January 2011
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Non Canadian family members of Canadians in the education and health sector will be able to start work on arrival in Ontario; Instead of waiting in some cases for a year there will be immediate work rights on arrival for the non-Canadian spouses, common law partners, and dependent children of Canadian citizens under a new pilot project.
"It's a reverse brain drain," said Immigration Minister Jason Kenney. "We're making it easier for Canadians abroad to bring their skills home and contribute to the Canada of tomorrow."
Normally, non-Canadian immediate family members of Canadian citizens returning home must wait between six months and one year before receiving permanent residence and thus the right to work.
However, since 22 November 2010, family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents returning home to work in Ontario in the health care and academic sectors have been able to get temporary work permits as soon as they arrive in Canada.
The health care and academic field have experienced severe labour shortages in Canada.
The project -- part of the 2008 Temporary Foreign Worker agreement between the Government of Canada and the Province of Ontario -- is operating on a trial basis until 22 May, 2012. The government will then evaluate the initiative's effectiveness.
"By encouraging highly-skilled workers to come back to Canada, we are laying the foundation for long-term economic growth," Kenney added.