ARCHIVED – Temporary public policy to facilitate the sponsorship of Syrian and Iraqi refugees by Groups of Five and Community Sponsors – 2015

Note: This public policy expired on September 20, 2016.

I hereby establish pursuant to section 25.2 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (the Act), that there are sufficient public policy considerations warranting an exemption from the requirement for an applicant to have sponsorship in support of their permanent residence visa application which includes a document issued by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees certifying the status of the foreign national as a refugee under the rules applicable to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees or a foreign state certifying the status of the foreign national as a refugee under the rules applicable to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees or the applicable laws of the foreign state, as the case may be (paragraph 153(1)(b) Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations), and an exemption from the requirement to pay the processing fee for examining the circumstances under subsection 25.2(1) of the Act (section 307 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations).

This public policy applies to Iraqi and Syrian nationals who have fled their country of nationality or habitual residence as a result of the current conflicts in Syria and Iraq, in order to facilitate the sponsorship of these persons by Groups of Five and Community Sponsors.

Eligibility Requirements

Based on public policy considerations, delegated officers are advised to consider granting an exemption from the requirement of the Regulations identified above for principal applicants who are:

  • nationals of Syria or Iraq, and
  • who fled their country of nationality or habitual residence due to the recent conflicts in Syria and Iraq.

Principal applicants eligible under this public policy and their family members are subject to all other statutory eligibility and admissibility requirements not waived under this public policy, including the requirement not to be inadmissible on criminal, security and medical grounds.

Applicants intending to reside in Quebec are subject to the Province of Quebec's selection criteria further to subsection 25.2 (3) of the Act, and cannot be granted permanent residence unless Quebec determines that they meet the applicable selection criteria of the province.

This public policy comes into force on the date of my signature and ends one year after it is signed.

The Honourable Chris Alexander
Canada’s Minister of Citizenship and Immigration
Dated at Ottawa, this 19 day of September 2015

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