February 23, 2023—Vancouver — Canada is committed to protecting Iranians already in Canada, and to helping Iranian families stay together. In light of the gross and systematic human rights violations being committed by the Iranian regime during its brutal crackdown on protestors, some may wish to prolong their stay in Canada rather than return home at this time.
Today, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Natural Resources, on behalf of the Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, announced new measures to support Iranian temporary residents in Canada.
Effective March 1, 2023, these measures will make it easier for Iranians who wish to extend their temporary status in Canada and to move between temporary streams, allowing Iranians to continue studying, working or visiting family by applying for a new permit from inside Canada. An open work permit pathway will be made available for Iranians already in Canada as well. Applications from Iranians in Canada will also be processed on a priority basis.
In addition, the Government of Canada is waiving certain processing fees for Iranians who wish to extend their stay in Canada, and will also waive passport and permanent resident travel document fees for citizens and permanent residents of Canada in Iran who wish to leave.
Canada continues to explore changes to other programs, like the Human Rights Defenders stream, 1 of the few programs in the world with a dedicated, permanent immigration program for those who protect and promote human rights.
These measures build on our previous actions against the Iranian regime’s flagrant suppression of Iranian people’s freedoms and human rights.
We are closely monitoring the ongoing needs of Iranians and will adapt our response as needed.