Operational Bulletin 511 – April 17, 2013

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by IRCC staff. It is posted on the department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

Revised Process for Dissemination of Notification of Arrival Transmissions (NATs) for Privately Sponsored Refugees (PSRs)

Summary

This Operational Bulletin (OB) provides additional information to OB 405-B on Centralized In-Canada Processing of Private Sponsorship of Refugee sponsorship applications at Centralized Processing Office-Winnipeg (CPO-W). Specifically, it establishes revised roles and responsibilities regarding Private Sponsorship of Refugees (PSR) Notification of Arrival Transmissions (NATs) for the local Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) offices, the NHQ Matching Centre, the Integration Program Management Branch (IPMB) and visa offices.

Issue

Program Officers need to be aware of revisions to the roles and responsibilities regarding Private Sponsorship of Refugee Notification of Arrival Transmissions.

Background

In April, 2012 the Centralized Processing Office – Winnipeg (CPO-W) was established to centralize the intake and in-Canada processing of PSR sponsorship applications. PSR centralization was further facilitated by use of the Global Case Management System (GCMS) to streamline operations and increase processing capacity.

The use of GCMS for tracking and processing PSR applications has necessitated changes to the way in which CIC provides Sponsorship Agreement Holders (SAHs) with arrival information about privately sponsored refugees (PSRs).

New Procedures

For PSR applications received at CPO-W on or after April 2, 2012:

Effective March 11, 2013, NATs for any case processed by CPO-W on or after April 2, 2012 will be sent directly from the Matching Centre to the sponsoring group (Sponsorship Agreement Holder [SAH], Group of Five [G5] or Community Sponsor [CS]).

Matching Centre will copy the applicable local CIC office when sending the NAT notification. This will indicate to the local CIC office that they need to issue Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP) coverage for the refugee(s) included in the NAT, as per existing local office procedures.

For PSR applications received at local CIC offices before April 2, 2012:

All NATs for SAH/G5/CS sponsored cases that were processed before April 2, 2012 will continue to be sent from the Matching Centre to the applicable local CIC office, which will remain responsible for disseminating the NAT to the SAH and issuing IFHP coverage to the refugee as per existing local office procedures.

SAH NATs:

One single email address will be used for all GCMS-generated CIC correspondence with each SAH, including NAT notifications. SAHs have been informed of their responsibilities for disseminating NAT information within their organization and/or to their Constituent Groups (CGs) if applicable.

IPMB is responsible for entering and updating the primary email address for each SAH in GCMS. If the Matching Centre receives an error message or the message bounces back, they should notify IPMB so that appropriate action can be taken.

G5 & CS NATS:

G5 and CS NATs will be sent from the Matching Centre to the Group Representative. The Group Representative is responsible for disseminating NAT information within their respective group.

New Visa Office Procedures:

Due to the often urgent nature of NAT notifications, it is essential that the Matching Centre be able to identify the sponsoring organization to which the NAT should be sent to at the time they receive the notification from the visa office.

For PSR cases processed in GCMS, prior to sending the NAT to the Matching Centre, the visa office must check GCMS to ensure that the SAH/G5/CS organization is associated with the application, and update GCMS, to make this association if necessary.

For PSR cases processed in CAIPS, the visa office should send the Matching Centre a NAT via email, and include the sponsor details as per usual practice.

New Local CIC Office Procedures:

Local CIC officers will need to pay special attention to the NATs they receive, and the NATs they are copied on.

If Matching Centre sends the NAT directly to the local CIC office, this indicates that the local CIC needs to forward the NAT to the respective sponsor and issue IFHP coverage for the refugee(s) included therein, as per existing local office procedures.

If the local CIC office is copied on the NAT, this indicates that the local CIC needs only to issue IFHP coverage for the refugee(s) included in the NAT, as per existing local office procedures; the sponsors will have already been notified. For Visa Office Referred (VOR) cases, the local CIC also needs to initiate Resettlement Assistance Program (RAP) income support, as per OB 512.

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