The Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program (SINP) is announcing improvements to the program based on stakeholder input and the need to increase program efficiencies. As well these changes will ensure that the program continues to see positive outcomes related to attraction, settlement and retention of provincial nominees and their families. The SINP is focused on continuous improvement with a view to enhancing the program’s labour market responsiveness and maintaining high rates of retention.
The program changes will be effective January 2, 2014, with receipt of applications under the current criterion ending on December 31, 2013. All applications received on or after January 2, 2014 will be subject to the new program criterion. Applications received on or prior to December 31, 2013 will be processed under the previous criterion unless a request to switch to the new eligibility requirements is made to the SINP.
The SINP undertook stakeholder consultations from June to August 2013 to gather feedback on future directions for the program. The SINP held in-person consultations with over 175 participants in Regina, Saskatoon, Humboldt, Prince Albert and Swift Current. In addition, the SINP received online submissions. Stakeholders included immigrant service providers, employers, chambers of commerce and economic development agencies, industry and labour representatives, municipal governments, nominees and immigration consultants.
Key stakeholder recommendations included:
the SINP should prioritize skilled workers;
the SINP needs more efficient processes and faster application processing;
language ability should be a key consideration as it is very important for integration into Saskatchewan communities; and
the SINP should undertake increased public education on the benefits of immigration.
The SINP program changes are consistent with stakeholder feedback received during consultations.
Online Application System
The SINP will launch an exclusively electronic system for the submission of applications on January 2, 2014. The new online system (a paperless system) will increase efficiencies by eliminating time spent on data entry, and reducing paper administration.
The SINP’s nine categories and subcategories have been combined into three main categories: International Skilled Worker, Saskatchewan Experience, and Entrepreneur and Farm.
Changes have been made to the criteria to increase program efficiencies and improve program outcomes.
International Skilled Worker Category
The International Skilled Worker Category is for skilled workers who want to work and live in Saskatchewan. This category enables the SINP to nominate individuals with high human capital that have the education, experience, language and adaptability to economically establish and successfully integrate into Saskatchewan’s communities. Criteria include:
The point rating system focuses on employment offers, education, work experience, language ability, and family connections, among other factors. The points available for persons with family connections in Saskatchewan are higher than the former Skilled Worker Category (i.e. points for family connections can account for 20% of points).
Applicants must have a minimum language score of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 4, as demonstrated by a SINP-approved language test. CLB 4 is the minimum; language ability of applicants will need to meet the requirement of employers.
Applicants whose occupational education and work experience is in a regulated profession will be required to obtain the appropriate Saskatchewan qualification recognition to be able to work in that profession.
Applicants that do not have a skilled job offer from an approved Saskatchewan employer require proof of settlement funds and must submit a settlement plan.
The SINP will accept 250 applications in 2014 from applicants without an offer of employment whose high skilled occupation is in demand in Saskatchewan. These occupations must have “good” or “fair’ employment prospects as per Saskatchewan’s Detailed Occupational Outlook (2013-2017). The list of in-demand occupations will be available in December 2013.
The International Skilled Worker Category sets a clear focus on the SINP’s priority to nominate skilled workers with the greatest ability to economically establish in the province. This is done through the points rating system which maintains a strong emphasis on employment in Saskatchewan and family connections and increases emphasis on key labour market attachment factors including education, work experience, language and age.
The new point rating system and application guide will be posted on the immigration website in December 2013, prior to the new category being launched on January 2, 2014.
Saskatchewan Experience Category
The Saskatchewan Experience Category is for foreign workers currently working and living in Saskatchewan. Streams under this category include the following:
Existing Work Permit (no changes to criteria)
Health Professions (no changes to criteria)
Hospitality Sector Pilot Project (no changes to criteria)
Long Haul Truck Drivers (no changes to criteria)
Students (please see changes listed below)
Changes to the Student streams include:
The Post Graduation Work Permit and the Master’s and PhD Graduate sub-categories will be combined into one Student sub-category.
Saskatchewan graduates will be required to have a skilled job offer in Saskatchewan relevant to their education in the National Occupational Classification (NOC) Matrix level "A", "B" or "0", or in a designated trade in Saskatchewan (Skilled Workers/Professionals Sub-Category) or a job offer requiring post-secondary education. (Work experience requirement continues to be six months)
Out of province graduates will be required to have a skilled job offer in Saskatchewan relevant to their education in the National Occupational Classification (NOC) Matrix level "A", "B" or "0", or in a designated trade in Saskatchewan (Skilled Workers/Professionals Sub-Category) or a job offer requiring post-secondary education; and must work in Saskatchewan for two years prior to application.
Application intake, as per the application intake thresholds, will be adjusted for persons wanting to apply under the current Student category criteria prior to December 31, 2013. An additional 250 applications from out-of-province graduates and an additional 150 applications from Saskatchewan graduates will be accepted until December 31, 2013 from applicants who meet all the program requirements including work experience requirements. No other application intake thresholds will be adjusted.
The changes to the Student sub-streams will help the SINP address high skilled labour shortages; ensure these nominees connect to the Saskatchewan labour market at a level suitable to their education; and will also increase retention by increasing nominees’ connections to the labour market and communities.
The application guide will be posted on the immigration website in December 2013, prior to the new category being launched on January 2, 2014.
Entrepreneur and Farm
The Entrepreneur and Farm Category sub-categories will be consolidated into three streams: Entrepreneur, Farm Owners/Operators, and the Young Farmers sub-stream.
Information sessions will be held in partnership with Regional Newcomer Gateways across the province in December 2013. Dates and times will be posted to www.saskimmigrationcanada.ca.
We have customer service staff available to answer questions about these changes who can be contacted by phone (306) 798-7467 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saskatchewan Immigration website