Legislation that will see about 16,000 immigration applications canceled by Quebec has been passed by the province's National Assembly after a 19-hour marathon session.
Quebec is introducing a new immigration system in a bid to reform the province's immigration application process in order to ensure the needs of the province are put in perspective and properly addressed.
The Bill, called Bill 9, was passed by the National Assembly in the early hours of Sunday that is on 23 June 2019 with 62 votes against 42. The Bill would require immigration applicants to pass a provincial values test before they can become permanent residents in Quebec.
Quebec Immigration Minister, Simon Jolin-Barrette, said the change which is in the interest of the province is with the aim of adequately meeting its labor market needs. The change will also see application time drop significantly from 36 months to just six months.
When Bill 9 was first filed in February, not less than 18,000 applications were expected to be eliminated, but the number fell to 16,000 following processing of another 2,000.
There have been complaints from different stakeholders regarding the elimination of the applications. Dominique Anglade, the Liberal immigration critic, stated that the government had not given a credible explanation for the elimination of the immigration applicants under the Regular Skilled Worker Program. Immigration lawyers have also expressed their disappointment, emphasizing that the new immigration system is not the problem but the ones to be eliminated.
The total number of people, together with family members, affected by the elimination is about 50,000. Affected applicants are required to reapply under Arrima, a new immigration system.
The premier of Quebec, François Legault, said he forced the vote because he has the responsibility of defending the values of the province before all of Canada.
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