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IRCC aims to grant citizenship to 300,000 people this fiscal year

IRCC aims to grant citizenship to 300,000 people this fiscal year

This fiscal year, IRCC hopes to give citizenship to 300,000 persons. The memo outlines citizenship goals for 2022 and offers suggestions for handling applications. An internal IRCC memo that details goals for the number of new citizens Canada would admit for the fiscal year 2022–2023 has been obtained by CIC News.

The memo, written for a senior official from the Operations, Planning and Performance section of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), suggests that IRCC process 300,000 new citizens and 285,000 decisions overall by March 31, 2023.

An application is reviewed and given a decision, after which it may be accepted, rejected, or marked as incomplete. According to the citizenship aim, the oath of citizenship must be taken either in person or virtually by 300,000 authorized applicants.

This is a substantial improvement over the fiscal year 2021–2022, and it even surpasses the pre-pandemic goals of 2019–2020, when 253,000 citizenship applications were handled. The IRCC was successful in acquiring 217,000 new citizens in 2021–2022.

With 116,000 new citizens admitted thus far in the fiscal year 2022–2023, Canada is on course to meet its goal. By contrast, only 35,000 Canadians had been sworn in at the same time period in 2021.

The document also describes the existing difficulties in processing applications and guaranteeing that everyone who is approved can take the oath of citizenship within a fair amount of time. IRCC abandoning paper applications

The COVID-19 epidemic started to spread in March 2020, which made it impossible for IRCC to process the majority of applications. This was due to the department's limited capacity to handle applications on paper that were mailed to a single location.

This prevented the IRCC from interviewing candidates and preventing any oath swearing at citizenship ceremonies because all in-person events were likewise canceled.

Due to these limitations, the citizenship application procedure will, for some applicants, be totally digital starting in November 2020. All applicants who are older than 18 are now included in this. The process may be simplified for new candidates, but there is still a sizable backlog of paper applications.

The document urges IRCC to stick with its present first-in-first-out policy for all applications, which would imply continuing to prioritize older paper applications while simultaneously giving a few digital ones top priority in order to keep the backlog from growing. 

Out of a targeted 245,000 decisions, the IRCC's fiscal year 2021 goal was to receive 5,000 digital applications. The research states that an increase in the number of digital applications processed will be necessary for the 2022–2023 fiscal year because a greater proportion of applications are now digital.

Processes take more than 20 months. A further report that was released in May said that processing times were 27 months. According to the memo, this is expected given the rise in online applications as well as the backlog of paper applications. The grant inventory contained 413,000 applications as of last June. 

According to IRCC, initiatives have been taken to reduce the backlog and process 80% of all new applications in accordance with service standards. To do this, more than 1,000 more employees have been hired, and plans call for giving reps access to the citizenship application status tracker. By the end of the year, minors under the age of 18 will also be able to submit an online citizenship application.

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