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Many Filipinos have immigrated to Canada as caregivers.
Assisting with the raising of children, tending to the elderly, and caring for people with medical needs, Filipinos, mostly women, have found caregiving to be an effective pathway to Canada.
But, Canada’s immigration programs for caregivers have undergone many changes in the past several years. Filipinos still have options for immigrating to Canada as a caregiver, however. In this article, we explain how to immigrate to Canada as a caregiver from the Philippines, and we also explain the changes to caregiver immigration over the past several years, including which programs have been closed and which new programs have been opened.
These caregiver immigration programs are currently open and accepting applications. If you want to immigrate to Canada from the Philippines as a caregiver, these are your options:
If you don’t qualify for either of Canada’s caregiver pilot programs, you may qualify to work as a caregiver in Canada by using a temporary work permit. These are your options:
There have been many changes to caregiver programs in the past several years. These are three former Canadian immigration programs for caregivers that have since been closed:
The Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker pilots: caregiver immigration to Canada from the Philippines
The Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker pilots are great options for Filipino caregivers who want to immigrate to Canada. They were launched in 2019 and will last a minimum of five years, with the possibility of being extended. Presently, both pilot programs aim to accept 2,750 caregivers each year, for a total of 5,500.
The Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker pilots are the only two Canadian immigration programs for caregivers that are currently open. If someone tells you otherwise, they might be referencing one of the caregiver programs that have closed in the past few years.
These two pilots are immigration programs that allow you to come to Canada on a work permit, but with a long-term pathway to Canadian permanent resident status. As long as you follow the steps of the program, you’ll be able to get PR status for yourself, your spouse or common-law partner, and your dependent children.
Eligibility for the Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker pilots
In order to apply to the Home Child Care Provider or Home Support Worker pilots, you must meet the following eligibility criteria.
You must have either of the following completed items:
- A Canadian one-year post-secondary (or higher) educational credential, or
- A foreign educational credential equal to or higher than a Canadian one-year post-secondary educational credential (this must be supported by an Educational Credential Assessment).
You need to prove that you are proficient in either English or French. You have to take an approved language test and receive scores at or above the Canadian Language Benchmark of Level 5 (CLB 5). Your language test results must be less than two years old at the time of your application.
Canadian Work Experience or a Canadian Job Offer
If you already have qualifying Canadian work experience, then you can apply directly for permanent resident status.
If you don’t have Canadian work experience, then you need an eligible job offer which will allow you to apply for an occupation-specific open work permit. Then, once you have enough Canadian experience, you may apply for permanent resident status. An occupation-specific open work permit means that you must work in one specific occupation, but you may change employers.
What counts as qualifying Canadian work experience?
In order to apply for permanent residence through these pilots, you must have work experience that meets the following conditions:
- 24 months of full-time (30+ hours per week) Canadian work experience obtained in the 36 months prior to application.
- Work experience must be one of these two occupations:
- Home Child-Care Provider (NOC 4411): Applicants must have provided in-home care to children under the age of 18, whether in their own home or in the employer’s or child’s home. Foster parents are not eligible.
- Home Support Workers (NOC 4412): Applicants must have experience as home support workers and related occupations. Housekeepers are not eligible.
What counts as an eligible Canadian job offer?
In order to apply for an open work permit through these pilots, you must have a Canadian job offer that meets the following conditions:
- From a single Canadian employer,
- For a position outside the province of Quebec,
- For full-time employment (30+ hours per week),
- In a home child-care provider (NOC 4411) or home support worker (NOC 4412) position, and
- Genuine and likely to be valid when you are issued your occupation-specific open work permit.
The genuineness of your job offer will be assessed based on proof of your employer’s need for a caregiver, proof that the wage of your job offer is in line with provincial standards, and proof that your employer can afford to pay the wages. As well, if the job offer is for a live-in arrangement, your employer must prove that they have reasonable accommodations for you.
In addition to the qualifying job offer, you must also demonstrate that you have the ability to perform the work outlined in your job offer. This might include proof of relevant work experience, copies of relevant educational credentials, and copies of recent work permits in Canada (if you have been working in Canada before).
If you meet the eligibility requirements for these programs, the next step is to apply.
Get your questions answered by an expert
Application Procedure: how to apply for the Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker pilots
If you meet the eligibility for the Home Child Care Provider or Home Support Worker pilot, you can follow these steps to submit your application and obtain your Canadian permanent resident status. These pilots allow you to include your spouse, common-law partner, and/or dependent children on your application.
I do not have any qualifying Canadian work experience.
- Step One: Get a qualifying job offer from a Canadian employer.
- Step Two: Submit your application, including supporting documents, to the Canadian government. Application details can be found here.
- Step Three: If approved, receive your occupation-specific open work permit.
- Step Four: Gain 24 months of full-time Canadian work experience as a home child-care provider or home support worker.
- Step Five: Apply for Canadian permanent resident status by submitting proof of your qualifying Canadian work experience.
I have qualifying Canadian work experience.
- Step One: Ensure you have at least 24 months of qualifying Canadian work experience obtained within the 36 months prior to applying.
Note: If you have some qualifying experience, but less than 24 months, you can apply to the pilot to extend your work permit, or continue using your current work permit until you have at least 24 months.
- Step Two: Submit your application for permanent residence, including supporting documents, to the Canadian government. Application details can be found here.
- Step Three: If approved, receive your Canadian permanent resident status.
Applying for to work in Canada as a caregiver through the Temporary Foreign Worker Program
If you do not qualify for either of Canada’s active caregiver immigration programs, it may be possible to apply for a temporary work permit as a caregiver through the Temporary Foreign Worker Program. However, the eligibility requirements for caregivers applying through the TFWP are strict.
TFWP Caregivers - Living outside Quebec
You can apply for a work permit to work temporary as a caregiver in Canada (outside Quebec) only if you meet one of the following conditions:
- You’re already in Canada and eligible to apply for a work permit from inside Canada, or
- You’re outside Canada and your employer applied for their Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) to hire you before June 18, 2019.
TFWP Caregivers - Living inside Quebec
Quebec employers may use the Temporary Foreign Worker Program to hire caregivers outside of the restrictions that face the rest of Canada. To do so, consult the procedures for Quebec’s wing of the TFWP.
Canadian immigration programs for caregivers that are now closed
The following programs are all closed.
Each of these programs was open at some point in the past several years. However, all of the programs included on this list are closed, with no indications that they will open in the future.
The Live-In Caregiver Program
The Live-In Caregiver Program allowed foreign workers to come to Canada and work as caregivers for Canadian families. After obtaining enough Canadian work experience, caregivers could apply for permanent residence. This program phased out new work permit applications beginning in 2014. Permanent residence applications through this program have also been phased out and this program is fully closed.
This program has many similarities with the Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker pilots. However, neither of the new pilots require caregivers to live with the family who employs them. This important change was enacted to reduce the vulnerability caregivers may face in live-in employment scenarios.
The Interim Pathway for Caregivers
The Interim Pathway for Caregivers was a temporary immigration pathway that existed for several months in 2019. It enabled eligible caregivers to apply for permanent resident status in the period between the closure of several older caregiver programs and the opening of the most recent caregiver pilot programs.
The Caring for Children Pilot
The Caring for Children Pilot was a five-year pilot program for caregivers focused on those providing care to children. It existed between the years of 2014 and 2019.
The Caring for People with High Medical Needs Pilot
The Caring for People with High Medical Needs Pilot was a five-year pilot program for caregivers focused on those providing care to individuals with high medical needs. It existed between the years of 2014 and 2019.
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