Changes to Canada’s immigration process will offer the government a new tool to invite prospective permanent residents with specific skills or training to apply through the Express Entry management system – and transportation workers are included.
Details about the timing of invitations for individual categories, as well as how to apply, are to be announced in coming weeks.
Truck drivers were added to the Express Entry program last year. Eligible workers have, in the past three years, accumulated at least six months of continuous work experience in their occupation.
“While we were very happy to see trucking included in the Express Entry program last year, we also knew there was still work to be done on ensuring drivers were competitive within the program,” said Jon Blackham, director of policy and public affairs with the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA). “So we put together what we thought was a compelling case for the trucking sector to be included in category-based selection and we are happy to see that reflected into today’s announcement.”
This year, the invitations will focus on candidates who are proficient in French, or have work experience in transport; trades such as carpenters, plumbers and contractors; healthcare; science, technology, engineering and mathematics; and agriculture and agri-food.
“Everywhere I go, I’ve heard loud and clear from employers across the country who are experiencing chronic labour shortages,” Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Sean Fraser said in a press release.
“These changes to the Express Entry system will ensure that they have the skilled workers they need to grow and succeed. We can also grow our economy and help businesses with labour shortages while also increasing the number of French-proficient candidates to help ensure the vitality of French-speaking communities. Put simply, Canada’s immigration system has never been more responsive to the country’s social or economic needs.”
Trucking industry job vacancies reached an all-time high of 25,600 positions in 2022, Trucking HR Canada reports.
CTA is also looking to ensure the industry has “meaningful long-term access” to the program.
“The economy and the skills that are most needed to sustain it are changing,” added CTA chairman Greg Munden.
The first category-based invitations to apply are expected this summer.
- This story has been updated to include comments from the Canadian Trucking Alliance
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