Canadians are set to hit the polls next month after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau requested for a dissolution of parliament for a snap election on August 15th, 2021. The request was made in the hope of gaining a majority government after winning only a minority in the last 2019 vote.
Although the next scheduled election was not until 2023, Trudeau is hoping to capitalize on positive attitudes toward his government’s handling of the pandemic following the country’s high vaccination rates and secure a majority government. Doing so would help the Liberals push through legislation quicker without the need for negotiation with opposing parties.
However, recent polling shows a narrowing margin between the Liberals and Conservatives. Support for the New Democratic Party is also up since the last election and may make significant gains this time.
All the major political parties in Canada are largely pro-immigration, each leader’s conception of what Canadian immigration should look differing slightly.
So…how might the election affect the future of Canadian immigration policy?
What could we expect if the Liberals remain in power?
If the Liberals win, we can expect them to continue to implement similar programs since first coming to power in 2015.
After first being elected by a landslide in 2015, Justin Trudeau’s government increased economic immigration levels to historic highs, then increased these targets once again in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. In October 2020, the Liberal government announced plans to welcome a whopping total of 1,233,000 permanent residents by 2023.
Building on the Conservative implemented Express Entry system, Liberals have made it easier for many Skilled Workers to come to Canada, allocating additional points for speaking French and having a sibling in the country, and overturning the Conservative imposed requirement to have a job offer in Canada.
Since 2015, the Liberals have implemented various economic immigration programs aimed at spreading the benefits of immigration throughout less populated areas in the country. Most notably, the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) and Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program (AIPP) made it easier for employers in qualifying regions to hire foreign workers and help them remain permanently in Canada.