Canada has unveiled additional immigration assistance for Lebanese citizens following the tragic explosion in Beirut last month.
Support was announced on 3 September, several weeks after Canada established an immigration task force in support of Lebanese individuals affected after the explosion.
The Canadian government will prioritize travel documents for Canadian citizens and permanent residents in Lebanon, as well as waive some fees to help such individuals return to Canada.
Immigration, Refugee, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) are prioritizing visitor visa applications for immediate family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents who were personally affected by the Beirut explosion. Immediate family members include:
- Common-law partners
- Dependent children
- Parents or step-parents
The IRCC invited individuals in need of assistance to read its dedicated webpage to find out if they were eligible for special measures imposed by Canada. After reading the webpage, IRCC states that individuals can send their questions to IRCC.SituationLebanon-SituationLiban.IRCC@cic.gc.ca. It will aim to answer questions within five business days.
How to qualify for assistance?
To qualify for assistance, individuals must
- Submit an application between September 3rd, 2020 and January 31, 2021;
- Follow the instructions listed on IRCC’s webpage;
- Have lived in an affected area at the time of the explosion if you are applying as an immediate family member of a Canadian citizen or permanent resident; and
- Include proof that you were personally impacted by the explosion. Types of proof can include documentation listing your residential address or copy of medical or legal documentation.
Option if you want to move to Canada as a Lebanese skilled worker
If you are a Lebanese citizen who wants to settle in Canada as a skilled worker, there are over 100 different routes available for you.
About 200,000 to 400,000 Lebanese people live in Canada and about 1,800 Lebanese live in Canada annually.
The main way to migrate to Canada as a skilled worker is through the express entry system. Canada held an express entry draw earlier this week and invited 4,200 successful immigration candidates to apply for permanent residency. Despite the coronavirus epidemic, Canada has invited about 70,000 immigration candidates this year.
The first step being considered for permanent residence under express entry is to see if you are eligible for it.