On February 7, during questioning on Immigration in “House of Commons” Conservatives became the voice of immigrants. They raised genuine emotion and frustration of immigrants waiting for their applications under process as well as future immigrants. These were the real questions with anger and frustration being raised by our readers for long time. We have compiled the video from Feb 7 questioning to the Liberal government in power and created a transcript, so that our readers can understand that their concerns are being raised to the federal government and hopefully soon be answered.
Shadow Minister for IRCC, Jasraj Singh Hallan(Conservative): Applicants for the federal skilled worker program are not being invited to apply under the express entry; even though foreign work permits, study permits, and temporary resident visas continue to be processed. This is adding to the pain of the families who remain separated, a labour shortage that is hurting Canadian businesses, and refugees who remain stranded feeling hopeless.
Will the minister stop patting himself on the back for a job well failed and apologize to the hardships his government that has caused to 2 million applicants stuck in the mismanagement of this liberal made back log?
IRCC Minister, Sean Fraser(Liberal): With respect to the honorable member and what I would say is a ginned up question and theatrical performance. Our focus through this pandemic has been to use the immigration system to continue to meet the needs of the Canadian economy at a time when our borders were closed to protect the public’s health. We pivoted to a strategy that started welcoming more people who were already inside Canada, so our businesses could rely on access to the talent they need to succeed.
And, what is the result Mr. Speaker 107% of the jobs that were lost during the pandemic have now been recovered compared to only 82% in the United States. Mr. speaker, we will continue to leverage immigration to fill the needs of our economy and I hope that member will work with me to achieve that.
MP from Prince George — Peace River — Northern Rockies, Bob Zimmer (Conservatives): My offices have been flooded with meetings, calls, and emails about immigration Canada and the build-up of almost 2 million applications that haven’t been processed. This has led to processing times of more than two years and the applicants are running out of time.
These delays are costly and highly stressful not only to the people applying, but their many workplaces too. We had a great reputation as a country for international students and those seeking citizenship and permanent residency. What is this government doing right now to stop victimizing some of the world’s most vulnerable vulnerable?
IRCC Minister, Sean Fraser(Liberal): Mr. speaker, the honorable member’s question is rather timely given that Monday of last week, I announced details of the 85 million dollars that was set aside in the recent economic and fiscal update to address processing capacity within the department. The money that we’re going to be investing is going to improve processing times for work permits for study permits, for permanent residency cards, to improve the timelines for temporary visitors coming to allow a quicker processing of proof of citizenship and new measures that are going to be coming online in the months ahead, that will allow individual applicants to access information about their file in a digital means. Mr. speaker the future looks bright when it comes to immigration in Canada.
MP Brantford-Brant, Larry Brock(Conservative): Mr. Speaker immigration Canada faces an unprecedented backlog under this Liberal government, nearly 2 million applications are in the queue. My office receives dozens of calls every week during a time of catastrophic labor shortages, thousands of foreign workers and Canadian employers are waiting years to get their applications processed. When will this government fix this Liberal-made immigration system and clear its historic backlog?
IRCC Minister, Sean Fraser(Liberal): Mr. Speaker, the honorable members outrage is manufactured at best. The reality of the situation is that the pandemic caused unprecedented pressures on our immigration system because we were trying to welcome a record number of newcomers, at a time when our border was closed to protect the public health and well-be ing against the spread of COVID19 in our communities by pivoting to an internal strategy to process more people.
We were able to resettle more than 400,000 new permanent residents, an all-time record in Canada. Going forward we’re going to continue to make the investments necessary so newcomers can arrive in Canada and make the kind of contributions they’ve been making to our economy and our communities for generations.