Other immigration pathways for refugees

While resettlement is an invaluable tool to address the needs of refugees who are at risk in the country where they sought refuge, there are other immigration pathways to Canada that some refugees may be able to access.

Photo: © UNHCR/Annie Sakkab

With global displacement on the rise around the world, lasting solutions that go beyond traditional humanitarian responses are needed to provide refugees with the protection they need. While resettlement involves the transfer of refugees from the country where they found asylum to a third country that has agreed to admit them, there are also other immigration pathways available that have the potential to increase the number of refugees who can find safety.

Canada’s immigration system allows for individuals and groups in Canada to support the resettlement of refugees through private sponsorship, for employers to hire skilled refugees through economic immigration programs, and for families of refugees to be reunited.

Having the opportunity to access other immigration programs enables refugees to enhance their self-reliance, harness their existing educational and professional qualifications, and access fundamental human rights for themselves and their families. By giving them the chance to use and strengthen their skills, refugees can rebuild their lives in safety and are better able to shape their own futures.

UNHCR Canada does not select refugees who will be resettled to Canada and is not able to intervene or influence the process of determining whether someone can be considered a refugee or if a refugee can be resettled to Canada. When resettlement places are offered by countries such as Canada, other UNHCR offices around the world in refugees’ countries of asylum will identify those at risk and submit their applications to these resettlement countries. Resettlement countries make the final decision as to whether or not a refugee will be admitted to their country.

Stay alert and report fraudsters who are offering you resettlement, financial or other kinds of assistance, fake documents or fake claims in exchange for money or other favours. All UNHCR services are free of charge. Do not trust anyone or any organization asking you to pay for the services of UNHCR or its partners.

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