The Citizenship Bill has received Royal Assent and is now law (CIC media release). No details on implementation are given, but certain provisions might come into effect as early as August. The main changes as a result of the new law will include:
- The knowledge and language requirements threshold for applicants is increased to 14-64 from previous 18-54 years of age.
- Applicants must be physically present in Canada for 4 out of their last 6 years, 183 days per year for at least 4 of those 6 years . Previously, applicants were required to be residents for 3 out of 4 years.
- Time spent in Canada as a non-permanent resident will not be taken into account.
- Applicants must have the intention to reside in Canada and new provision will apply to naturalized citizens only. The previous law did not have this provision.
- The Minister can revoke citizenship from dual citizens, and new grounds for revocation are brought in.
- Penalties for fraud and misrepresentation can carry a maximum fine of $100,000 and/or five years in prison
- New provisions will take effect in a year.
- Responses from Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers (CARL) here
- Backgrounder on Bill C-24 in English, French, Spanish, Farsi, Urdu, Hindi, Arabic, Chinese – traditional, Chinese – simplified and Filipino.
- Read the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers’ submission to the House of Commons and Senate committees considering bill C-24.
- Read Amnesty International’s brief on concerns regarding Bill C-24.
- View the petition on Change.org/secondclasscitizens