Canada introduces new temporary and permanent immigration streams for fleeing Ukrainians

As part of the Government of Canada’s response to Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is introducing new immigration streams for Ukrainians who want to come to Canada temporarily or permanently.

“I am inspired by the courage Ukrainians have displayed as they uphold the democratic ideals that we cherish in Canada,” said Immigration Minister Sean Fraser. “While they defend themselves against Putin’s costly war of aggression, we will provide safe haven to those who fled to protect themselves and their families. Canadians stand with Ukrainians in their time of need and we will welcome them with open arms.”

A Canada-Ukraine Authorization for Emergency Travel, available for individuals fleeing Ukraine and want to come to Canada temporarily. There will be no limit to the number of Ukrainians who can apply. This is the fastest, safest, and most efficient way for Ukrainians to come to Canada and eliminates many of the normal visa requirements, said IRCC. All Ukrainian nationals will be able to apply through this new path, and, pending background check and security screening, their stay in Canada could be extended by at least 2 years.The extended pathway will be open for applications in 2 weeks. In the interim period, Ukrainians can apply through all programs, and their applications will be prioritized.

IRCC will also quickly implement a special family reunification sponsorship pathway for permanent residence. Details of this program will be developed in the coming weeks, including by working with the Ukrainian Canadian Congress.

All Ukrainians who come to Canada as part of these measures will be eligible to apply for open work permits, making it easier for employers to quickly hire Ukrainian nationals. As previously announced, IRCC will issue open work permits to Ukrainian visitors, workers and students who are currently in Canada and cannot safely go home.

More information on these new temporary and permanent residence programs, including processing times, will be available in the coming days and weeks.

IRCC has established a dedicated service channel for Ukraine immigration enquiries available for clients both in Canada and abroad at 613-321-4243, with collect calls accepted. Clients can add the keyword “Ukraine2022” to the IRCC crisis web form with their enquiry and it will be prioritized.

Over the last several weeks, IRCC has been working closely with other government departments, the Ukrainian Canadian Congress, and others across the Ukrainian-Canadian community to ensure that all measures meet the needs of Ukrainians and their communities.

Since January 1, 2022, over 6,100 Ukrainians have arrived in Canada. All immigrants, refugees and visitors, including temporary foreign workers and students, are carefully screened before coming into Canada. This screening ensures that they do not pose a threat to the health, safety or security of Canadians.

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