The Coalition Avenir Québec provincial government is planning on making some notable changes to the province's immigration laws, which will affect thousands of people. The Quebec Government is willing to throw out 18,000 job applications because of new immigration laws. Under the new proposal, Bill 9, 18,000 job applications from immigrants would be completely thrown out and cancelled, according to CBC News

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The proposed Bill 9 was announced today on February 7 by the Coalition Avenir Québec government. Under the new bill, which is titled, "An Act to increase Quebec's socio-economic prosperity and adequately meet labour market needs through successful immigrant integration," applications from immigrants made before August 2018 will be thrown out and cancelled, according to CBC News

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The provincial government is planning to spend around $19 million reimbursing all 18,000 applicants, who are still awaiting an answer, for their possibly cancelled applications, said Immigration Minister Simon Jolin-Barrette. 

Besides throwing out 18,000 immigrant pending job applications, Bill 19 will also bring other changes to the Quebec Immigration Act. According to CBC News, significant changes include ensuring that immigrants learn the French language and also integrate the "democratic values and the Quebec values expressed by the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms."

Immigration Minister Simon Jolin-Barrette is describing this new approach towards immigrant job applications as the "Tinder of immigration". "We are taking the profile of the candidate with the jobs that we need," he said. "So we make a match."

He also emphasized that immigrants will need to learn French if they want to work in Quebec. "We want to give the chance for anybody from anywhere around the world to come to Quebec, but what we say is: come work in Quebec, but you will have to learn French and have the knowledge of Quebec values to be there forever," said Jolin-Barrette at a news conference, according to CBC News

Not everyone is happy with the new proposed changes to Quebec's immigration laws. Luis Miguel Cristancho is the executive director of Bienvenue à Notre-Dame-de-Grâce, which is a non-profit agency helping newcomers to Montreal. He told CBC News that "simply jettisoning 18,000 immigrant applications will be devastating for many of those people who have waited years for an answer from Quebec". 

Liberal immigration critic Dominique Anglade also told CBC News that cancelling 18,000 skilled worker applications would be highly detrimental to Quebec's public image. "The message from the government is extremely negative," she said. 

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The bill has not been passed yet, but it is quite likely that it will be accepted. The only thing left to happen before it becomes legally implemented is that it needs to be voted in by the National Assembly, and the Coalition Avenir Québec, who proposed the bill, hold the majority of seats. 

The Coalition Avenir Québec government also plans to cut down on the number of immigrants that the province will accept this year to 40,000. This is more than 10,000 immigrants less when compared with the year before – over 50,000 immigrants were accepted into the province last year.

Source: CBC News

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