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Workers From 16 New Occupations Now Eligible For Permanent Residency in Canada

Last updated on 19 November 2022


Immigration is not just good for our communities and our economy. It is essential. That is why the Government of Canada is working to welcome newcomers who bring the skills our economy needs to help address acute labour shortages across the country.

The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, today announced the implementation of the National Occupational Classification (NOC) 2021 for immigration programs managed under the Express Entry system. Using the new NOC categories will allow Canada to bring in global talent in high-demand sectors like health care, construction, and transportation.

Nurse aides, long-term care aides, hospital attendants, elementary and secondary school teacher assistants, and transport truck drivers are examples of some of the 16 occupations now included in Express Entry.

The NOC system is used to track and categorize all jobs in the Canadian labour market and is updated to reflect changes in the economy and in the nature of work. The changes to the NOC system support the Minister’s commitment to expand pathways to permanent residency for temporary workers and international students, as more jobs will become eligible for the programs managed under Express Entry. Through this update, 16 occupations that were not previously eligible can now benefit from expanded pathways to permanent residency.

“We are using all of the tools at our disposal to tackle labour shortages, particularly in key sectors like health care, construction, and transportation. These changes will support Canadians in need of these services, and they will support employers by providing them with a more robust workforce who we can depend on to drive our economy forward into a prosperous future. I’m thrilled to announce expanded pathways to permanent residence in Canada for these in-demand workers.”

– The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship

“NOC 2021 is welcome news for Canadian employers, for newcomers to Canada ready to take on the jobs they are qualified for, and for a newly eligible group of workers who will now have an Express Entry path to permanent residency available to them. With these changes, we are better positioned to tackle labour shortages proactively and grow our economy with a stronger, skilled workforce.”

–The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion

“The Canadian Support Workers Association (CANSWA) applauds this move to help ease the shortage of personal support workers in our health care system. Personal support workers provide the majority of the bedside nursing care to vulnerable Canadians across our nation and are in desperate need of assistance to ensure that basic patient care can be delivered. The CANSWA and our members welcome the help from these new Canadians and hope they find a rewarding new life in their new home.”

–Miranda Ferrier, CEO Canadian Support Workers Association

“Every sector of the Canadian economy relies on the trucking industry. Today’s announcement by Minister Fraser will help secure supply chains—from agriculture to manufacturing—by providing trucking companies access to an international workforce that was not previously available to our sector.”

–Stephen Laskowski, President of Canadian Trucking Alliance

Quick facts

  • The National Occupational Classification (NOC) is the national reference for occupations in Canada. It provides a systematic classification structure that categorizes the entire range of occupational activity in Canada for collecting, analyzing, and disseminating occupational data for labour market information and employment-related program administration. Occupational information supports labour market and career intelligence, skills development, occupational forecasting, labour supply and demand analysis, employment equity, and numerous other programs and services.
  • Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada uses NOC to determine and assess the occupational eligibility criteria under its temporary and permanent residency programs.
  • Employment and Social Development Canada and Statistics Canada work together to update the NOC on an ongoing basis, with major reviews occurring every 10 years, to ensure it reflects the changing labour market. The review involves in-depth research, analysis, and assessment of the feedback received through consultations and occupational research. Input from the public and stakeholders is an integral part of the review process.
  •  Foreign nationals with work experience in the following 16 occupations are now eligible to apply through Express Entry:
    • payroll administrators
    • dental assistants and dental laboratory assistants
    • nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates
    • pharmacy technical assistants and pharmacy assistants
    • elementary and secondary school teacher assistants
    • sheriffs and bailiffs
    • correctional service officers
    • by-law enforcement and other regulatory officers
    • estheticians, electrologists and related occupations
    • residential and commercial installers and servicers
    • pest controllers and fumigators
    • other repairers and servicers
    • transport truck drivers
    • bus drivers, subway operators and other transit operators
    • heavy equipment operators
    • aircraft assemblers and aircraft assembly inspectors
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