Over 150,000 new Canadian citizens so far in 2014
Canada welcomed the one hundred and fifty thousandth new citizen of 2014 at a ceremony in Scarborough. This is more than double the number of new Canadians sworn in over the same period last year.
The 150,000 new citizens who came to Canada from more than 200 countries were welcomed at approximately 1,500 citizenship ceremonies across the country.
Earlier this summer, Citizenship and Immigration Minister Alexander attended a Canada Day citizenship ceremony in his home town of Ajax. On July 1, 2014, more than 2,200 new citizens from 138 countries were welcomed at 45 special Canada Day citizenship ceremonies across the country.
As Alexander said, “Canada Day is a day to reflect upon what it means to be Canadian and to reaffirm our commitment to upholding Canadian values, which have their roots in democracy, freedom, human rights and the rule of law. It is a day to recognize both the rights and responsibilities of each and every Canadian.”
The large number of new citizens who have joined the Canadian family so far this year shows that changes and improvements that have come into effect over the past year have already made the system more efficient. And, the backlog has been reduced, thereby helping more people realize their dream of becoming Canadian sooner.
Recent changes to the Citizenship Act will further reduce wait times by streamlining the decision-making process for citizenship. It is expected that those changes will bring the average processing time for citizenship applications down to less than one year and that the current backlog will be reduced by more than 80 per cent by 2015–2016.
Since 2006, Canada has welcomed over 1.3 million proud new Canadians. Canada has also enjoyed the highest sustained levels of immigration in Canadian history – an average of a quarter million newcomers each year.
Posted: Sep 30, 2014