One Step Processing & Integrated Sponsorship Pilot Project

In December 1995 to March 1996, the Citizenship & Immigration Canada (CIC) established an experimental “one-step processing and integrated sponsorship” project. The waiting time to process a “family class” visa can range from one to several years depending on the circumstances. With this project, the visa may be issued within a few days.

Two staff members from CIC explained at length details of the pilot project during a seminar organized by MFFC at its community center. A total of 200 people attended a series of the seminars. About 20 people underwent training to assist the community at large.

The new process entailed completing the requirements for the sponsorship and immigration applications at the same time and submitting them together along with the required supporting documentation and fee to the specified CIC office.

The new processing method if adopted, would reduce by 90% inquiries from the public regarding pending applications. This meant an annual savings of $15 million to $18 million for the federal government.

Applications under the pilot project had to be filed by June 1996. With this constricted time frame, the MFFC initiated a blitz campaign to enable as many applicants in the community to take advantage of the pilot project. MFFC assisted the CIC in reaching out to the community about this pilot project, in the distribution of the application form packages, in helping prospective applicants comply with the requirements and in the completion of their pilot project.

MFFC helped about 110 applicants complete the application and several more learned about the project through the MFFC.