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Temporary Visa Surge in Quebec

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Quebec experienced a significant increase in the number of temporary visa holders last year, reaching 528,034 individuals. This surge was a result of temporary workers, students, and asylum seekers flocking to the Canadian province, as highlighted in a recent report by Institut du Quebec.

Strain on Social Services and Housing Markets

Premier Fran├žois Legault of Quebec has expressed concerns about the province reaching a “breaking point” due to this influx of temporary visa holders, particularly refugees. The strain on social services and housing markets has raised alarms about the sustainability of the current situation.

Transformation of Quebec’s Workforce

Despite the challenges faced, the report notes that this wave of immigration has played a pivotal role in reshaping Quebec’s workforce, especially with the retirement of baby boomers. From 2015 to 2023, the province has seen almost all of its labor force growth driven by immigrants.

Impact on Various Sectors

While the increase in temporary visa holders has helped alleviate labor shortages in sectors such as manufacturing, retail, and services, it has failed to address the gaps in healthcare, social services, and construction. Quebec has been vocal about the struggles stemming from the rise in temporary permits.

Request for Federal Assistance

To address the mounting pressures caused by the inflow of asylum seekers, Quebec recently requested 1 billion Canadian dollars (U.S.$740 million) from the federal government. This financial aid aims to support the province in managing the challenges associated with the escalating number of newcomers.

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