Feds fast-track immigration for typhoon victims

OTTAWA – The Canadian federal government announced earlier this month that they will “fast-track” the immigration process for Filipinos who were significantly affected by Typhoon Ondoy.

Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney said in a statement that his department is now offering special measures to facilitate immigration to Canada.

Jason Kenny“I would like to express my deepest sympathy and support for the people of the Philippines affected by this terrible disaster. This government is moving quickly to reunite Canadians and permanent residents with their families by extending a welcome to those who wish to come to Canada. Effective immediately immigration officials will begin expediting applications from individuals directly and significantly affected by the typhoon,” said Kenney.

The measures will be applied to new and existing applications from Canadian citizens, permanent residents and protected persons who have close family members in the Philippines. They must, however, identify themselves as being directly and significantly affected by the current situation and notify CIC.

New sponsorship applications should have “Philippines” prominently written on the mailing envelope. Sponsors and applicants presently in Canada who have applications in process should notify the CIC Call Centre at 1-888-242-2100 (in Canada only) to identify their existing applications, if they or the family they have sponsored have been adversely affected.

Further information is available at Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s website, www.cic.gc.ca.

The visa office in Manila will give priority processing to temporary residence applicants once they demonstrate that they have been significantly affected by the typhoon.

These new measures are in addition to a possible $5 million in humanitarian assistance that International Co-operation Minister Beverley Oda announced shortly after typhoon Ondoy struck the Philippines on September 26.

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