Canada is implementing automation technologies to speed up the processing of post-graduation work permits (PGWPs) and work permit extensions. The automated tools will handle sorting and assigning applications, as well as assessing applications for eligibility, allowing immigration officers to focus on making final decisions.
Canada has a new plan to deal with the massive backlog on its hands and fast track the processing of post-graduation work permits (PGWPs) and work permit extension.
Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is expanding the use of automation technologies to enhance the efficiency of processing work permit extensions and PGWPs. These automated tools will assess applications based on their complexity, allowing for quicker decisions for some applicants.
The automated tools are subject to regular reviews to ensure their proper functioning and alignment with applications undergoing human review, the IRCC said in a statement. Importantly, only an IRCC officer retains the authority to refuse an application; the automated tools do not have the capability to refuse or recommend refusals.
The automated tools serve two primary functions:
- Sorting and Assigning Applications: The triage function of these tools handles clerical and repetitive tasks related to sorting applications. This frees up immigration officers to focus on assessing applications and making final decisions. Applications are categorized based on rules established by IRCC officers, which are derived from legislative and regulatory criteria. Files are then directed to the appropriate officers for further processing, based on office capabilitiesand officer expertise.
- Assessing Applications for Eligibility: The eligibility function identifies routine applications for streamlined processing. When reviewing an application, the tools assess whether it falls into the routine category and determine if the applicant is eligible for a work permit extension or PGWP based on criteria developed by IRCC officers. The application is then sent to an officer for the assessment of the applicant’s admissibility to Canada and the final decision. Applications that do not receive automatic eligibility approval may still be manually approved following an officer’s review.
IRCC emphasized on its commitment to responsible development and deployment of data-driven technologies, adhering to privacy requirements and human rights protection. In line with this commitment and the Canada Treasury Board Directive on Automated Decision-Making, an algorithmic impact assessment (AIA) has been conducted to evaluate the tools used for work permit extensions and PGWP applications, the statement added.
The AIA categorizes the systems’ impact level as moderate, and various measures are in place to mitigate potential risks. These measures include assessments for potential discriminatory impacts, incorporation of privacy and security elements into the tool’s design, and the ability of officers to override the tool’s decisions.
India has emerged as the primary source of new permanent residents for Canada, surpassing all other countries by a significant margin. According to the latest data from IRCC, India contributed 118,245 new permanent residents to Canada in 2022, accounting for over 27% of the total 437,610 new permanent residents during that period.
In the first seven months of the current year, 96,085 Indians applied for PRs to Canada, representing more than 31.6% of the total 303,955 new permanent residents during that time frame.