Canada

Canada

The Government of Canada, through Statistics Canada, is implementing gender-responsive data into its gender equality and foreign policies in response to a 2018 report. This includes the development of new standards of sex- and gender-related variables and classifications in data collection. The policy aims to provide a two-step process for planning and collecting data on women and gender-diverse people, including migrants.

Theme: Migration Data and Registration

GCM Objective: 1

The Government of Canada is engaging new partners on projects that specifically address the multiple barriers to labour market entry and career advancement faced by Racialized Newcomer Women in Canada.

Theme: Pathways and Employment

GCM Objective: 6, 16, 18

The Government of Canada introduced its Gender Results Framework (GRF) in 2018 to pursue and enhance gender equality, including on migration-related policies. GRF is a whole-of-government tool designed to track how Canada is doing on gender-responsive policymaking and measure its progress going forward. Through Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, GRF promotes better collection and use of gender-responsive data.

Theme: Migration Data and Registration

GCM Objectives: 1

The Government of Canada is using a gender-based analysis (GBA Plus) tool to provide capacity building and policy evaluation tools. GBA Plus trains policymakers, including in immigration agencies, on how various intersections of identity, such as gender, affect implementation of its policies. Through GBA Plus, agencies such as Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada are developing, collecting and making better use of gender-responsive data.

Theme: Migration Data and Registration

GCM Objectives: 1

The Government of Canada provides protection and assistance to refugee women through its Women at Risk program. The program provides such assistance to migrant women who are at heightened risk for fear of their safety and security through resettlement in Canada. This applies to women without the normal protection of a family who find themselves in precarious situations.

Theme: Violence and Vulnerabilities

GCM Objective: 7, 14, 16

The Canadian Council for Refugees launched a project called "Gender-Based Approach to Settlement". The goal of the project is to build the capacity of the settlement sector to apply a gender-based analysis in the advocacy for and the development, implementation and evaluation of settlement programs and services for migrants.

Theme: Integration and Participation

GCM Objective: 3, 7, 14

In April 2019, with funding from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), four organizations from the anti-violence and settlement sectors, partnered to begin collaborative work on developing a national strategy to address GBV for newcomers and refugees.​

By building on current expertise, knowledge and resources in the anti-violence and settlement sectors, this coordinated effort recognizes the reality that newcomers and refugees continue to experience structural barriers to accessing support. Working together in partnership between the four organizations and engaging their members increases our ability to deliver GBV prevention and intervention and better serve individuals and families experiencing violence.

Between 2019-2022, with input from the settlement and anti-violence sectors, and through funding from Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), this project will build the capacity of settlement and anti-violence sectors to co-develop a shared base of knowledge and to better support newcomers and refugees through a coordinated, comprehensive approach. Working collaboratively across Canada is a strategic way to make change happen.

Theme: Violence and Vulnerabilities

GCM Objective: 7, 16

The Gender-Based Enhanced Settlement Program (GESP) is a unique program which the non-profit organization MOSAIC designed to support newcomer families in British Columbia, Canada. Sometimes the settlement process can be hard on newcomer families and may impact the family dynamics. Services under this program are available for both men and women to strengthen healthy relationships during their settlement and integration process. Services include:

  • Assistance with identifying needs
  • Information about gender roles and responsibilities in Canada
  • Emotional support
  • Informational workshops on various topics
  • Assistance with developing a support network
  • Referrals to other community services and resources

Theme: Integration and Participation

GCM Objective: 15, 16

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has adopted regulatory amendments implemented family violence measures to reduce vulnerability to gender-based violence in the immigration system. In June 2015, a regulatory amendment to increase the minimum age of a recognized spouse from 16 to 18 in all permanent and temporary immigration programs came into effect. This amendment is intended to decrease the number of potentially vulnerable young spouses immigrating to Canada who may not have the capacity to act in their own best interest, and helps prevent the occurrence of forced marriages.

At the same time, regulations were implemented to ensure that marriages conducted by proxy, telephone, fax, Internet or similar forms (i.e., marriages where one or both parties was not physically present at the marriage ceremony) would no longer be recognized within Canada’s permanent and temporary immigration programs. The nature of these marriages may facilitate forced marriages because one or both spouses are not physically present making it difficult to determine if they consent to the marriage. These regulatory amendments help reduce the number of vulnerable individuals who fall victim to forced marriage in order to gain immigration status.

Theme: Violence and Vulnerabilities

GCM Objective: 7

In 2019, the Government of Canada implemented two initiatives to support those whose immigration status may be precarious due to the reliance on an abusive spouse or partner for their status in Canada.

First, individuals in this vulnerable situation who are out-of-status may apply for an expedited, fee-exempt, temporary resident permit (TRP), which includes a fee-exempt work permit and Interim Federal Health Program coverage. This provides protection to vulnerable individuals who are victims of family violence and/or their dependent foreign national children in Canada through security of short-term immigration status to help escape the influence of abuse, and grant them time to decide their next course of action.

Secondly, an expedited process is available for individuals in Canada who are in urgent situations of family violence and who apply for permanent residence on humanitarian and compassionate grounds. This means individuals will have their permanent residence applications processed more quickly, with the goal of helping them leave abusive situations as expeditiously as possible.

Theme: Violence and Vulnerabilities

GCM Objective: 7

In 2018 the Government of Canada began modernizing how it handles information on sex and gender. This led Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to introduce its first Policy on Client Sex and Gender identifier in January 2021. The policy establishes for all IRCC lines of business how to collect, record, and display a client’s sex or gender identifier as accurately as possible. The sex or gender identifier includes female (F), male (M), and non-binary (X). This policy enhances the privacy of clients by eliminating unnecessary displays of sex or gender information. It provides individuals with a non-binary option that better reflects their gender while enabling IRCC’s collection of more inclusive gender data. It also ensures that individuals are able to obtain identity documents and personal records that align with their gender while supporting the integrity of IRCC programs.

Theme: Migration Data and Registration

GCM Objective: 1, 4