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Why Brazilians Choose Canada

In the past thirty years, the Brazilian population in Canada has increased significantly, as Brazilians are looking to establish themselves in a country offering beneficial social and economic opportunities. Canada fits this profile entirely, and is known for its openness to mass immigration, so a move to the North is often very popular. Prior to the 1990s, only around 5,000 Brazilian immigrants lived in Canada, while, in 2016, there were almost 27,000.

Last year, the Canadian government changed the visa requirements for Brazilians, allowing travelers who have either held a Canadian visitor visa in the past 10 years, or currently hold a valid U.S. nonimmigrant visa, to enter Canada temporarily by plane without a Canadian visitor visa. This gave Brazilians an even bigger incentive to travel to Canada, and eventually apply for immigration.

Brazilian Immigrants in Canada

According to the National Household Survey in 2011, the densest Brazilian population was in Ontario, followed by Québec, British Columbia, and Alberta.  Over 50% of Brazilians in Canada live in Ontario, while 26% reside in Québec, and 13% in British Columbia.

Where do Brazilians live?

It is without saying that Toronto, located in Ontario, has one of the most vibrant Brazilian communities in Canada, and continues to grow as the population becomes more diverse by the minute. The city hosts the annual Brazil festival, a colorful event that takes place at Earls Court Park, where people of all cultures can come and enjoy the celebration of Brazilian traditions. With the biggest Brazilian population in Canada, its presence in both the culture and community of the city is clear.

Brazilian students also look to Canada to obtain a quality education at a relatively low price. Vancouver, British Columbia, tops the list for travelling Brazilian students, as it is home to highly ranked public schools, and a warmer climate than the rest of the country. These students often come to Vancouver to ameliorate their English, and participate in a world-renowned education system.

Working Holiday Programs

The Working Holiday Programs offer international students both working holiday and internship programs with interest-related job placements. Brazil is part of two Working Holiday programs: SWAP Holiday and GO International. Brazilians that are currently enrolled in a higher education institution, such as a college or university, between 18 and 35, can apply for an open work permit with a validity period of 12 months. Applicants can choose between the following options: paid work programs, volunteering, or English classes. The processing time for this program is 8 weeks.

The volunteer program is very expansive, as GO International is part of a large web of volunteering connections throughout the country. Applicants can pick from a wide variety of humanitarian, environmental or wildlife projects that will both build their life experiences, as well as their resume.

The English study program is an experiential education program that focuses on learning the language through cultural immersion, as well as in-class learning. Course options include General English, University Pathway Program, International Business English, IELTS Preparation, and more.

The paid work program in both organizations places students in various jobs in areas such as hospitality, outdoor hobbies, and the culinary field. The program includes seminars, coaching, career advice, and social events. These additional benefits are very useful to students wishing to gain international work experience in Canada, as well as begin establishing themselves in the country.

If you are Brazilian and interested in moving to Canada, many options are open to you. Canada is seeing an influx of students, skilled workers, and families seeking permanent residence. For more information, contact info@canadianlawgroup.com or vmalka@ckrlaw.com.


Update on Asylum Seekers in Canada

The Canadian government recently announced its plans to renegotiate the Safe Third Country Agreement (STCA) to change the laws of applying for asylum status in both the United States and Canada. According to the STCA, when asylum seekers would attempt to cross the border to Canada or the United States, the customs officers are required to turn them away, and encourage them to apply for asylum when they are back in the country they arrived from.

However, Canadian officials are displeased with this rule, and want to modify it to allow asylum seekers to apply for asylum at the border. In the past year and a half, over 25,000 people have crossed the Canada-U.S. and U.S.-Canada borders, seeking asylum in the two countries. This is concerning to the border officials, as the number only seems to be growing, and at an alarming rate. The highest rates of intercepted asylum seekers have been during the summer, so we are expecting large waves this summer as well.

Border officers are no longer able to intercept the amount of asylum seekers, even though border officers are on patrol 24 hours a day. This is a clearly unprecedented wave of mass immigration in both countries, and regulations must change in order to adapt to the crisis. Statistically speaking, around 80 to 85% of asylum seekers come from Haiti, and over 50% of Haitians who requested asylum in 2016. Haitians are slowly moving away from the United States, as the U.S. Haiti Temporary Protection Status program, which gave them legal status in the U.S., ended abruptly this year. They are now looking to Canada for refuge, but admission as an asylee is not as simple as it may seem.

Currently, the U.S. government declared that they were against the modifications to the STCA, however this might change. The U.S. is evermore impacted by this crisis, as the United States is often the country asylum seekers arrived from, and therefore, they are asked to return into the country to apply for asylum in Canada. By allowing asylum seekers to apply directly at the Canadian border, it would reduce the amount of asylum seekers staying temporarily in the United States, waiting for approval from the Canadian government.

It is evident that the changes to the STCA could potentially alleviate the different worries both incoming asylum seekers and border patrol officers could have, and reduce the amount of illegal crossings between the two countries.

For more information, contact info@canadianlawgroup.com or vmalka@ckrlaw.com.


The ABCs of the Global Talent Stream

The Global Talent Stream is a work permit stream under the Temporary Foreign Worker program, designed to offer two-week processing times to eligible high skilled foreign workers. This program, piloted in 2017, was made for innovative Canadian companies looking for unique talent throughout the world.

Employers wishing to hire workers through this stream must complete a Labour Market Benefits Plan. This plan outlines the positive benefits of hiring the selected worker, and how their work will impact the Canadian labour market.

Under this stream, highly skilled workers in skill type 0 or A of the National Occupation Classification (NOC) may come to Canada to work for 15 days in a six-month period, or 30 days during a 12-month period, without having to apply for a work permit. This is very advantageous to companies that have temporary business in Canada, and need foreign workers to come work intermittently during a period of 6 to 12 months.

Employers seeking to hire through this stream must offer the Temporary Foreign Worker a similar wage than a Canadian citizen or permanent resident would earn by being in the same profession. This can be determined by looking directly at the NOC code under which the employee would fit, and determining the median wage for the position.

As part of the Global Skills Strategy initiative, aiming to help companies innovate and grow, the program is separated in two categories: Categories A and B.

Category A

Companies that have been referred to the Global Talent Stream by one of the Stream’s designated partners and hiring unique and specialized talent can apply through Category A of the program.

Category A also requires employers to commit to creating jobs for Canadian citizens and permanent residents through direct means, (i.e. hiring employees) or indirect means (i.e. investing in a project requiring manual labor).

Category B

This category was designed for employers looking for specific highly skilled workers, through occupations found on the Global Talent Occupations List. This category does not require a referral from one of the designated partners. These occupations are in-demand in Canada, and for which there is a lack of domestic labour supply. This list is updated frequently, as different in-demand occupations arise, and others are removed.

Overall, the list is mainly comprised of tech jobs, such as: Computer and Information Systems Manager (NOC 0213), Computer Engineers (NOC 2147), Information Systems Analyst and Consultants (2171), and more. To consult the full Global Talent Occupations List, click here.

Category B requires employers to commit to increasing investments in skills and training for Canadian citizens and permanent residents.

If you are interested in applying for a Temporary Work Permit through the Global Talent Stream, or you are a company looking for foreign workers, contact info@canadianlawgroup.com or vmalka@ckrlaw.com .

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