Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada Ahmed Hussen announced new requirements to obtaining Canadian Citizenship allowing for more flexibility to both younger and older eligible immigrants and individuals who have already begun building lives in Canada during a press conference at ISSofBC Welcome Centre Friday.
The changes which took effect October 11 include: reducing the time permanent residents must be physically present in Canada before applying for citizenship; amending the age range for applicants who must meet the language and knowledge requirements; and counting the days applicants spend in Canada as temporary residents or protected persons as half days toward their physical presence requirements, up to 365 days.
“One of the strongest pillars for successful integration into Canadian life is achieving Canadian citizenship and becoming part of the Canadian family. The Government encourages all immigrants to take the path towards citizenship and take advantage of everything that being a Canadian has to offer,” the minister said.
During Minister Hussen’s visit to ISSofBC Welcome Centre, he also met with refugee families in the Mount Pleasant Family Centre’s Circles of Care and Connection program which provides parenting resources and services to refugee families with young children.
More changes to the Citizenship Act are expected to take effect later this year and in early 2018.