Positive impacts are being displayed throughout participating communities across Canada in the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot Program (RNIP). This community-driven program was launched in 2019 and designed to improve the economic outlook of the community while addressing employer concerns of labour shortages in rural communities.

The pilot program was designed to attract skilled foreign workers to immigrate to participating communities. The intent was that these communities would fast-track the workers’ applications for permanent residency by recommending them as candidates to the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) for their final decision. 

In Ontario, participating communities include North Bay, Sault Ste. Marie, Sudbury, Timmins and Thunder Bay. Additional participating communities across Canada include Moose Jaw in Saskatchewan, Vernon and West Kootenay in British Columbia, Brandon and Altona/Rhineland in Manitoba and Claresholm in Alberta. 

The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot program offers many benefits to the skilled foreign workers, employers, and the community. By attracting immigrants to smaller, rural cities and towns, it creates a sense of community where the workers and their families are linked to community support services and opportunities. This increases the likelihood that the foreign skilled worker and their family will adjust and adapt to the community, and will want to remain part of it. 

Another key benefit of this program is to reduce application processing times for foreign skilled workers to receive permanent residency, allowing them to by-pass the need to apply for temporary work permits. Employers also benefit greatly through this pilot project. As foreign skilled workers are encouraged to move to participating communities, there is a higher likelihood that vacant jobs will not only be filled more quickly, but also by more qualified workers. The end date of the pilot program has been extended to 2024.

There are four steps to the application process for this pilot program. Firstly, you must determine if you meet the program requirements set forth by the IRCC and participating communities. Once eligibility is determined, you can proceed to step two, finding an eligible employer within the community by obtaining a job offer. If a job offer has been extended to you, you can proceed to applying for a recommendation from your community. Once the community successfully recommends you, you can proceed to the last step in the application process, applying for fast-tracked permanent residency. Once step four is complete, the IRCC will review the application and determine the residency status of the applicant. If successful, the pilot program allows the worker to receive permanent residency, without needing to apply for a temporary work permit. 

If you are a foreign skilled worker looking to immigrate to Canada and receive permanent residency, book a consultation with Brace Law to explore the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot program. Brace Law’s team of immigration lawyers can help guide you through the immigration process, determine your eligibility for your chosen immigration stream, and work with you to complete your applications correctly. When you work with Brace Law, you can Consider It Handled! Call us today at 905-815-6555 for a consultation today. 

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