Joint letter calls for urgent consultations to modify the new policy
Two organizations representing 234 post-secondary institutions have written a letter expressing “significant concern” about the federal government’s decision to cap the number of student permits for the next two years.
The letter, addressed to Immigration Minister Marc Miller, was written by Colleges and Institutes Canada and Universities Canada.
The organizations say the cap “has the potential to bring about widespread and long-lasting consequences for both Canadian and international students.”
In its announcement last week, the federal government said it will approve approximately 360,000 undergraduate study permits for 2024 — a 35 per cent reduction from 2023.
The intent, according to Miller, is to cut down on the “hundreds” of schools operating in Canada that accept large amounts of international students but allegedly operate under-resourced campuses.
In order to implement the cap, the federal government also announced that, starting Jan. 22, every study permit application submitted to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) must also include an attestation letter from a province or territory.
Ottawa is demanding that all provinces and territories establish a process to issue those letters to students by March 31.
The organizations claim that enrolment has already been affected as provinces and territories build their systems and try to navigate the newly-imposed requirement. Because of that, the letter says, eligible students are being held up from obtaining study permits.