Federal government announces 2-year cap on student visas

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And let’s talk about Mark Miller because this was Ottawa has been signaling for some time that there will be a plan to reduce the number of international students he gave us the most recent number there are more than a million students here in Canada now on International visas and there’s been a

Lot of discussion about whether the system is out of control as he himself has said so finally today the details on the government’s plan to bring in a cap explain the plan as you have heard it David and why it’s significant well the significance here Heather is

Not just that they’re changing the way uh International students are are allowed to come to Canada in terms of the number and how they’re allowed to work and who they bring with them how they’re allowed to work this is in some ways a fight that that Mark Miller is

Picking with the private college sector in Ontario in particular he had a lot of criticism there for for what he called sham institution suggesting that many of them need to be shut down there’s been an explosion in that sector over the last 10 years uh w w w with with these

Private colleges uh recruiting International students charging them tuition uh fees many times higher than what you would pay in a public institution and then not providing them with the supports and the housing that they need and he feels that this is a significant problem that needs to be

Addressed so there’s three big things he announced today one is a temporary two-year cap on new student permits starting in 2024 essentially reducing the the cap to 364,000 approved appli ations uh in September 1 of this year now he says that’s a 35% uh reduction uh from 2023 so right

There it’s about 100,000 or so uh student uh visas being removed from the system there and that will continue as things go on they’ve taken a two-year period to revamp the whole system but this is the inro measure that’s coming in there and what’s going to happen with

This Heather is that the number total number of visas are going to be allocated uh by province based on population and and that is going to affect Ontario in particular where more than half of the current International students are so there’s going to be a pretty sharp drop it seems in the number

Of uh approved applications for Canada’s largest Province the second thing they’re going to do starting in September of 2024 is no work permits for students largely at private institutions again targeting the private institutions allowing exemptions for certain public institutions but also for graduate level programs Canada wants to recruit

Master’s and doctoral level uh students to this country also for Prof profal faculty such as law and medicine and he left open the possibility of certain publicly funded trade schools also qualifying for these exemptions because you want to bring in say construction workers to help build houses that were

To deal with the number one issue the country is facing in terms of of of the housing shortage and also to allow people to come into say um nursing schools for example and the third measure Heather is a limit on spousal work permits uh one of the things that

Happens in Canada is that if you get a a foreign student visa and you come and enroll in a college if you bring your spouse with you they can get a work permit this is no longer going to be possible at the undergraduate level so spouse spouses for example of Master’s

Students doctoral students and the medicine medical schools those other key areas that they say are a priority for candidate recruit they will still be able uh to qualify uh for for work permits so all of this creates barriers and disincentives for people to come here it makes it harder for the private

Colleges one of the things that stood out for me Heather was the way Mark Miller talked about sham uh Commerce and business degrees that sit on top of a massage parlor that nobody goes into and saying there are a lot of sham institutions that need to be shut down

There’s a real sense that he from him if you listen to his words that provinces have either underfunded post-secondary institutions which have allowed which has incentivized uh the public system to go after International students or they’ve allowed private colleges to go without sufficient regulation and that’s led to this Challenge and something he

Says he’s he’s going to start dealing with right away when you talk about his language the Sham institutions you go back to December I’ve always been struck by what he said at a news conference at that time he’s called them the diploma equivalent of puppy mills that are just

Churning out diplomas and this is not a legitimate student experience so he’s been talking about this from some time and then these concrete steps coming in as you say two years taking effect immediately and then to be re-evaluated at the end of 2025 looking at those particular

Institutions David and as you say there are some notable exemptions notably Elementary secondary school public degrees and then the uh Masters and doctoral degrees as you mentioned David many who run those higher education institutions are concerned about this and they’ve talked publicly about a one-size fits-all approach to a Visa cap

They worry that Canada won’t have the image of a study destination anymore they’re worried it’ll hurt some of the institutions in this country there seemed to be an acknowledgement here of from Mark meler that they they’re aware of those concerns and are going to be working to address them what did you hear

There yeah so certainly they’re they’re trying to shift the balance back in favor of of the publicly funded institutions there has been a Reliance on International students as a revenue stream as well as just sort of to to fill out the student body of a lot of uh postsecondary publicly funded

Post-secondary institutions across Canada but the the concern about undermining Canada’s reputation as a as a study destination private colleges turning out the puppy mill degrees as he sort of described them giving students no supports no housing no wraparound supports to succeed and essentially bringing people in to to work in the gig

Economy or take low- wage uh jobs is also something that undermines the reputation of Canada as a study destination so these are the sorts of things they’re trying to deal with the other knock on effect of this Heather is is that they’re trying to deal with uh reducing the competition for housing in

Particular entry-level housing and student housing Mike Moffett is here he’s an economist with a smart Mark Prosperity Institute and he spoke to reporters because he’s going into brief can uh cabinet on how to deal with housing and he was asked about this anticipated announcement from Mark Miller and he says it’s the single

Biggest thing the government can do in the immediate term to help deal with with with the pressure on housing Supply in Canada because what you have is just base competition for student housing but also you have investors buying what would be starter homes or single family homes and buying them and flipping them

Into student housing to take advantage to capture the opportunities in this particular market so he feels that not only is this a good way to protect students from being fleeced for sham degrees and also just to you know to help tilt the balance maybe in favor of

The of of the public sector it will help alleviate some of the pressure in some cities that are seeing really explosive population growth because of these uh particular private sector Institutions and make it easier for people in those areas to get housing in the short term

Immigration Minister Marc Miller has announced the federal government will cap the number of international student visas to be granted over the next two years, with the goal of targeting ‘sham institutions.’

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  2. 99% of those are East Indians they broke the housing market, healthcare, job market (cheap labour) now companies are refusing to hire Canadians on reasonable wages thanks to international students.

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