Caregivers are very much in demand in Canada. In the past, caregivers would need to come to Canada on work permit for a specific employer. Unfortunately, the government at the time did not screen caregivers to determine if they would meet the requirements for permanent residence after working here 2 years. This was very unusual because most caregivers wish to receive permanent residence status after working here and this benefit really distinguishes Canada from most other countries. Many caregivers working in the Middle East and Asia are never able to obtain Permanent Residence, let alone the free health care that comes along with it.
The system was reformed and now caregivers are screened in advance to ensure they meet language and education requirements for permanent residence. Once this is done, they are issued a “sectoral open work permit.” It’s “sectoral” because it’s limited to the field of caregiving. It’s “open” because it allows caregivers to switch employers once they are here without having to do any additional paperwork (no need to apply for a new work permit).
Once the caregiver arrives in Canada and then proves they have worked here for 2 years, and the Immigration Department is notified, given that permanent residence criteria was already evaluated at the visa office (for language and education, etc.), the caregiver is able to officially become an unconditional Permanent Resident of Canada.
There are two programs currently and each accepts 2,750 applicants (5,500 total per year). Given there is a cap, it is best to apply early once the programs open every year.
Criteria for the Caregiver Immigration Programs
2 years of full-time work experience with 3 years (as of the date of application)
one year of post-secondary education equivalent to Canadian standards
a Canadian Language Benchmark of 5 for English or NCLC 5 for French
medical, criminal and security clearances
Caregiver Immigration Programs
Home Child Care Provider Pilot
The 2 years of work experience must be caring for children under 18 years old and a live-in requirement no longer applies.
The applicable job code is “NOC 4411.”
Home Support Worker Pilot
The 2 years of work experience must be caring for someone who needs assistance from a home support worker and a live-in requirement no longer applies.
The applicable job code is “NOC 4412.”
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