When Quebec decided to introduce some controversial changes to its immigration rules, it caused a stir worldwide. Not only were applicants against the idea, but businesses and universities also joined in the protest leading to a suspension of the new rules that came into effect on 1st November. The latest news reveals that international graduates who will be applying to the Quebec Experience Program will now again be assessed and evaluated on the basis of the criteria that were used before 1st November 2019. The old rules have been reinstated, at least for the time being. The amendment came into effect on 14th November, undoing the previous change.
The Quebec Experience Program or PEQ has emerged as a well-appreciated fast-track immigration program, and applicants were disappointed that they would not be able to take advantage of the program. PEQ allows international graduates from schools in Quebec to apply for the permanent residence selection as long as they are eligible. PEQ is also a popular program for temporary foreign workers who are living and working in Quebec, as it grants them permission to apply for permanent residence selection as well.
The new criteria that were enforced on 1st November did not receive much support and were judged as being unfair to applicants who already had a life in Quebec. Quebec’s Immigration Minister, Simon Jolin-Barrette, was forced to rethink the reforms in the face of the heavy criticism. He decided to backtrack and reinstate the previous requirements to satisfy the protestors. The outrage had to be subdued, and there was no other way he could satisfy the public. The reason for the denunciation of the new criteria was that it placed restrictions on the eligibility of applicants limiting it to specific areas of training and targeted occupations.