Update on Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship
I’ve been contacted by a number of people asking about the recent announcement of Minister Kenney regarding parent and grandparent sponsorship.
As readers of this blog may know, the sponsorship process for parents and grandparents was suspended and that remains so today. The suspension of the program was aimed at reducing the massive backlog of applications sitting in visa offices around the world. The processing time for these applications was exceeding 8 years, which is beyond excessive and created hardships for families who wished to re-unite in Canada.
However, the backlog could only be reduced by the numbers of parents and grandparents allowed into Canada by the quota for that year, which has always been low.
The recent announcement confirmed that for the second year now, 25,000 parents and grandparents will be admitted to Canada in 2013. That amounts to 50,000 in two years, and a 60 percent increase since 2010 and the highest level in recent memory. This will reduce the backlog by 20 percent, and hopefully, further quota increases will reduce the backlog even further.
For those still stuck in that massive backlog, there is the 10 year “supervisa” for parents and grandparents that allows them to visit Canada for an extended period of time. This is a good option even if you are waiting for a sponsorship application to be processed.
The new rules for a revamped parental sponsorship program have yet to be announced. However, I’m quite certain that the new program will focus on lightening the load on Canada’s social welfare and health systems, which have been front and center in the debates around the program. I suspec that in the new program, sponsors (and their parents) will be responsible for much of their medical care in Canada, or other needs normally provided through the government. I believe this is the only way this government can admit elderly immigrants without facing a political backlash from certain groups of stakeholders.
We’ll see soon enough.