Work permit applications for foreign workers in these occupations will go to the top of the list for processing in Quebec.

On June 10th, Quebec, long known for having its own immigration programs, has followed the Canadian Federal government’s new policy to provide expedited processing of in-demand, priority occupations amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. There are currently 24 occupations which are being prioritized and of those, 23 occupations have minimum recruitment requirements waived, given the demands of COVID-19.

Typically, Quebec employers must demonstrate that they have attempted to fill open positions with local talent as part of a Labour Market ImpactAssessment (LMIA) process. LMIA’s are sent to Quebec’s Immigration Department, the Ministry of Immigration, Francization and Integration (MIFI) and also Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) at the same time.

In Quebec, the MIFI requires that all LMIA applications be submitted in French. If an employer needs assistance with this requirement, ESDCwill help and provide information through the Employer Contact Centre from Monday to Friday, between 7:00 am and 8:00 pm, EST.

The province is removing the recruitment requirement and prioritize the following occupations as of June 10:

  1. Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses (NOC 3012)
  2. Specialist physicians (NOC 3111)
  3. General practitioners and family physicians (NOC 3112)
  4. Allied primary health practitioners (NOC 3124)
  5. Pharmacists (NOC 3131)
  6. Medical laboratory technologists (NOC 3211)
  7. Medical laboratory technicians and pathologists’ assistants (NOC 3212)
  8. Respiratory therapists, clinical perfusionists and cardiopulmonary technologists (NOC 3214)
  9. Other medical technologists and technicians (except dental health) (NOC 3219)
  10. Licensed practical nurses (NOC 3233)
  11. Other technical occupations in therapy and assessment (NOC 3237)
  12. Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates (NOC 3413)
  13. Other assisting occupations in support of health services (NOC 3414)
  14. Light duty cleaners (NOC 6731)
  15. Butchers, meat cutters and fishmongers-retail and wholesale (NOC 6331)
  16. Agricultural service contractors, farm supervisors and specialized livestock workers (NOC 8252)
  17. General Farm Workers (NOC 8431)
  18. Nursery and Greenhouse Workers (NOC 8432)
  19. Harvesting labourers (NOC 8611)
  20. Industrial butchers and meat cutters, poultry preparers and related workers (NOC 9462)
  21. Fish and seafood plant workers (NOC 9463)
  22. Labourers in food, beverage and associated products processing (NOC 9617)
  23. Labourers in fish and seafood processing (NOC 9618)

Transport truck drivers (NOC 7511) positions will be prioritized, but the minimum recruitment requirements are not waived.

LMIA Exempt in Quebec

 Quebec employers do not need to have an LMIA if the temporary foreign worker meets the following criteria:

  1. Holds a valid work permit;
  2. Holds a skilled worker Certificate of Selection in Quebec (CSQ);
  3. Resides in Quebec;
  4. Has applied for permanent residence under the Quebec SkilledWorker class.

In addition, the temporary foreign worker (TFW) must also fall under one of the following categories:

  1. Seeking to extend the work permit for their current employer;
  2. Seeking to renew the work authorization with a new employer in Quebec;
  3. A foreign student with a Post-Graduation Work Permit(PGWP) and a job offer in the province;
  4. A work permit holder under the International Experience Canada(IEC) program and:
  5. TFW seeking to extend the work authorization for their current employer;
  6. TFW seeking to renew it for a new Quebec employer.

There are also other situations where employers do not need to have a LMIA, as per Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. Under this act, there are also situations where temporary foreign workers may not need to apply for a work permit from IRCC.

Employers wishing to hire temporary foreign workers that do not meet these criteria must follow the regular LMIA process for hiring foreign talent in Quebec.

TPW entering Canada must ensure they have their LMIA, CAQ for work permit and/or authorization letter from the Canadian embassy.

Knowledge of French is not required for all positions.