ARCHIVED – End of Haiti Special Measures (as of August 31, 2010)

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The Government of Canada is committed to reuniting families affected by the earthquake that struck near Port-au-Prince on January 12, 2010, as quickly as possible.

CIC continues to focus its efforts on processing Haiti Special Measures (HSM) family sponsorship applications received up to August 31, 2010, and will continue to process applications from Haitians in the family class received on or after September 1, 2010, as quickly as possible.

PROCESSING COMMITMENTS

August 31, 2010 — The Haiti Special Measures announced on January 16, 2010, are ending effective midnight, September 1, 2010.

CIC remains committed to processing HSM applications received up to August 31, 2010, within 12 weeks of the end of the month in which they were received. Applications received on or after September 1, 2010, will still be processed as quickly as possible.

CIC is continuing its processing efforts on applications from Haitians.Resources devoted to processing applications from Haitians after September 1 will remain at the same level. The dedicated staff in Ottawa and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, who were added to help accelerate visa processing remain in place. Currently, there are 23 decision-makers in Port-au-Prince, Ottawa and Santo Domingo working on applications from Haiti.

As of September 1, 2010, CIC’s first priority for applications from Haitians will be

  • processing applications received under the Quebec Special Measures parrainage humanitaire category;
  • processing all new applications under the family class; and
  • finalizing the adoption cases under Operation Stork.

CIC’s second processing priority will be for

  • dependents of protected persons;
  • selected categories of non-immigrant applicants; and
  • applicants applying under the Humanitarian and Compassionate category.

Note on fee waivers

As of September 1, 2010, fees for all Haitian applications will no longer be waived.

FAMILY CLASS APPLICATION

Family class applications involve two steps:

  1. The family member in Canada submits a sponsorship application supporting a relative in Haiti.
  2. The applicant in Haiti submits a permanent residence application.

PROGRESS TO DATE

Sponsorship applications

As of August 21, CIC has reviewed sponsorship applications for more than 4,000 sponsors from the HSM category. We have processed all completed sponsorship applications received to date.

Permanent residence applications

Prior to the earthquake, there were permanent resident applications for about 1,700 Haitians awaiting processing under the family class. Following the earthquake, these applications became part of the HSM category. The department has cleared 98% of these cases. This means permanent resident applications for close to 1,700 Haitians were approved, refused or withdrawn. Under the HSM, CIC withdraws applications when applicants do not provide the requested information or comply with CIC requests, such as submitting to medical or DNA testing within the requested timeframe.

Between January 13, just after the earthquake struck, and March 31, CIC received applications for over 650 Haitians in the HSM family class. CIC has now cleared 97% of these applications.

In April, CIC received applications for almost 400 Haitians in the HSM family class, and has now cleared 96% of them. Applications that have not been cleared are awaiting action from the applicant (such as medical examinations, DNA tests or interviews)

Total progress on processing of permanent residence applications

CIC has received applications for close to 3,200 Haitians under the HSM since the earthquake. In addition to the 1,700 applications from before January 12 mentioned above, CIC has received a total of approximately 4,900 permanent resident applicants, 600 of which have been withdrawn.

Of these HSM applications, CIC has approved permanent resident applications for more than 1,500 Haitians, almost four times the number in the same timeframe last year in the same categories.

Permanent resident applicants are reminded to attend their scheduled interviews or complete their medical examinations so that their applications can be processed.

Note on applications for temporary stays in Canada

CIC has granted permission for temporary entry of approximately 2,200 Haitians, using either temporary resident visas (more than 1,700 issued) or temporary resident permits (more than 500 issued).

Haitian nationals in Canada on a temporary resident visa or Temporary Resident Permit who wish to remain in Canada must apply to extend their temporary resident status or obtain a new Temporary Resident Permit before it expires. You can find more information on this website.

QUEBEC SPECIAL MEASURES

The Province of Quebec introduced new regulatory measures to facilitate sponsorship of people who were seriously and personally affected by the earthquake in Haiti. CIC is working closely with Quebec on this program. The Province of Quebec has received applications for more than 8,300 Haitians under their program.

The province will review each application and issue a CSQ to the applicant if they meet the provincial Quebec Special Measure requirements. The applicant, in turn, must then submit the CSQ, application for permanent residence and other appropriate documents, as well as the full fee payment to CIC.

We will process these applications as quickly as possible. As of August 21, CIC has received applications for 324 persons with CSQs. Virtually all the permanent resident applications we have received under the Quebec Special Measures are in process and awaiting a decision.

Canadian citizens and permanent residents can, if they qualify, help family in Haiti by submitting a sponsorship application to CPC–Mississauga here in Canada. CIC will continue to process new and existing applications for permanent residence in Canada in the Spouse or Common-Law Partner in Canada Class and for Protected Persons, including those family members directly and significantly affected by this disaster. Sponsors should submit permanent resident applications for their family members at the same time, with the appropriate documents and fees.

Please advise your family members in Haiti that they should not approach the Embassy in Port-au-Prince until they are called to do so. By respecting this, you will help CIC to better serve you and everyone else, as Embassy staff would be able to focus on processing applications from persons with qualified sponsors.

Please ensure that contact information for you and your family members is up-to-date.

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