The Canadian government  addressing the rule that rejects the immigrants on medical ground

The Ministry of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship of Canada unveils its action plan to reconsider their controversial immigration policy which refuses immigrants on the medical ground as to cause excessive demand regarding the healthcare system of the country. According to the recommendation of Parliament’s Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration, the ‘excessive demand’ rules in section 38 1(c) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act of Canada are to be abolished. The report on medical inadmissibility rules for immigrants recommends in favour of the abolition and  Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is to respond to that in a certain period of time.


Regarding the controversial excessive demand ground

 The Immigration And Refugee Protection Act, under section 38 1(C), disallows a person on health ground if the health condition of that person according to the act “might reasonably be expected to cause excessive demand on health or social services.”  It defines excessive demand as the anticipated costs that would exceed average Canadian per capita health and Social Services over a period of 5 to 10 years or that might affect the existing health services wait time.

The response of Canada’s Ministry of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship

 Canada’s Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship reaffirmed the position of the ministry on immigrants on medical ground before the committee that they are in favor of changing the rules. It is against the spirit of the policy of Canadian values for accommodating physically disabled people. The ministry is all in favor of pursuing the recommendations of the committee regarding the matter within a  definite timeline 

The delay was still  criticized by the committee for Canadian Immigration


The response of the ministry was even not very satisfactory to the members of the committee.  They asked the minister to explain the reason behind taking such long time for adopting Immigration Refugee and Citizenship (IRCC). According to them, the ministry is studying the matter for quite sometimes since 2016, and as result of that, the lives of the people are at stake. The members of the committee also raised few incidents and examples in favor of their. point to the ministry.Many of the permanent residence applications turned down by the authority because of the existing rules and according to them at least around 1000 such cases happened all across Canada.

They are in favour of policy change that will act as saving the lives of the people and in favour of implementing it at the earliest possible time. According to the committee, the IRCC  is trying their best for adopting measures by consulting with the provinces of Canada regarding the controversial clauses existing for last 40 years. 

The response of the ministry of Immigration in Canada to the criticism 

In response to all those criticisms of the committee, the ministry stated that they were in favour of changing this out of date policy that is against the spirit of the Canadian values regarding the inclusion of the physically disabled persons and they proclaimed their official stand publicly favoring the immigrants on medical ground.

 They are only contemplating on the measures to implement the policy as it is concerned with provincial health and social service budget. They can only manage to implement their policy with the willfulness of the provinces.

In accordance with the constitution of Canada, it is the provincial and territorial government, who is in general responsible for catering health services to the residents along with other social services. That is why it is very important for the ministry to develop a good coordination between the center and the provincial governments.


Raima Sen

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