Supportive immigration measures for Syrian and Turkish temporary residents

Upon the devastating earthquake that hit Turkey and Syria, the Canadian government decided to respond quickly . Canada has decided to support the Turkish and Syrians affected by the devastating earthquake by giving priority to the temporary and permanent residency applications, in addition to the refugee settlement applications.

Supportive immigration measures for Syrian and Turkish temporary residents

Multiple steps are being made to help the Syrians and Turkish currently inside Canada and have been affected by the earthquake one way or another by extending their stay.

What are the supportive immigration measures that Canada is providing for Syrian and Turkish residents?

The supportive measures that Canada announced to be in effect starting from March 29, 2023 will include:

  1. Prioritizing the immigration applications of those affected by the earthquake.
  2. Issuing an open work permit pathway for Turkish and Syrian nationals already in Canada that expected to be valid for up to 3 years.
  3. Turkish and Syrians can continue working, studying, or visiting family by applying for a free- extension of their residency.
  4. IRCC will waive the travel and passport documents requirements for those outside Canada seeking PR in Canada.
  5. IRCC also made it easier for Turkish and Syrian Canadian citizens to return to Canada by waiving the fees of ” temporary passports, limited-validity passports or emergency travel documents, as well as Canadian citizenship certificates and permanent resident travel documents” which will be easier for them to return to their home in Canada.

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Canada’s Humanitarian aid for the affected nationals form the earthquake

“Canada is committed to providing relief to those impacted by the devastating earthquakes in Türkiye and Syria. We are already prioritizing the processing of applications from those affected and today we are introducing new measures that make it easier for Turkish and Syrian nationals to extend their stay in Canada and be with their families, while continuing to work and study in a safe environment. Our government will always stand ready to respond to emerging international crises and support those in need.”

– The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship

From the beginning of the 24th of February, Canada has allocated $50 million as humanitarian support for the affected Syrians and Turkish people during the devastating earthquake. This humanitarian relief will be directed to multiple critical humanitarian activities that will help them pass this crisis and give support to both Syria & Turkey.

It is worth mentioning that after February 8, 2023, at least 16,000 immigration applications reached the IRCC from both Turkey and Syria; approximately 1700 of these were people affected directly by the earthquake.

What’s next for Turkish and Syrian nationals to get in Canada?

IRCC has already started processing and prioritizing applications from the affected areas; prioritizing of the applications certainly includes the visitor visa applications from Canadian citizens and permanent residency holders seeking to join their loved ones as soon as possible.

More information regarding the new applications on how to apply and get in Canada will be available on IRCC’S website in the upcoming weeks.

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Canada is collaborating with UN partners to provide temporary housing for refugees in the resettlement process who have been severely affected while their applications are being processed. It assured that it will remain vigilant in assessing the needs of people in the region and adjust their response accordingly.