From: Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada

Press Release

December 2, 2022-Edmonton-The pace of Canada’s economic recovery has made it difficult for employers, including those in the tourism industry, to find the workers they need.

Sean Fraser (Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship), and Randy Boissonnault, (Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance), announced that Canada is extending work permits to family members of temporary foreign workers. This will help reduce labor shortages by helping employers find the workers they need.

Previously, spouses were only eligible for a work permit if the principal applicant worked in a highly skilled occupation. This temporary measure (2 years) is intended to improve the emotional, physical and financial well-being of workers by keeping families together. As a result, the worker is expected to be better integrated into his or her general work environment and community.

Beginning January 2023, through a temporary two-year measure, Canada will extend eligibility to work in Canada to working-age spouses and children through a phased-in approach for workers of all skill levels (Example: families of healthcare, trade and hospitality workers). It is estimated that family members of over 200,000 foreign workers would be able to start working in Canada, which would provide greater opportunities for both foreign workers wishing to work in Canada and employers to meet their labour needs.

The temporary measure will be implemented in 3 phases to ensure its success:

– Phase 1: family members of workers will be able to come to Canada through the high wage stream of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program or the International Mobility Program and apply for an open work permit .

– Phase 2: Seeks to expand the measure to the family members of workers coming from the low-wage stream of the Temporary Foreign Workers Program, after consultation.

– Phase 3: will include consultations with agricultural partners and stakeholders to assess the operational feasibility of expanding the measure to the family members of agricultural workers.

Immigration will continue to play a vital role in addressing Canada’s labour shortage, and the Government of Canada will continue to implement policies aimed at assisting employers with their staffing needs at all skill levels.

Canada has issued more than 645,000 work permits between January and October 2022, almost 4 times more than the 163,000 issued in the same period in 2021.


“Everywhere I go, employers across the country continue to point to the lack of workers as their biggest obstacle. Today’s announcement will help employers find the workers they need to fill their labour shortages by extending work permits to family members at all skill levels, making it possible for family members of more than 200,000 foreign workers to work in Canada. Our Government will continue to help employers overcome labour shortages while supporting the well-being of workers and bringing their families together.”

– His Excellency Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship.

“Labour is the No. 1 challenge facing Canada’s tourism sector as we position ourselves for post-pandemic growth. Today, our Government is bringing innovative family-based solutions to solve this problem and help our tourism partners grow to meet the global demand for Canadian experiences from coast to coast.”

– His Excellency Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Deputy Minister of Finance


Information translated and collected for:
Explore I.D.E.A.S. Immigration & Education Corp.
Ivonne Navas, RCIC/ Regulated Immigration Consultant/ Canadian Government Authorized Representative.
Member of The College of Immigration and Citizenship Consultants. Membership # R517820




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