June 3, 2022

The Honourable Sean Fraser
Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
House of Commons
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6

Dear Minister Fraser:

RE: Rural & Northern Immigration Pilot

The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot, launched by your Government in 2019, has provided a much-needed path to permanent residence for skilled foreign workers who want to live in small communities. Despite the many added challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, the program has been a great success with pilot communities welcoming hundreds of workers and their families to date, alongside hundreds of additional applications currently in progress. The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot is achieving its goal of supporting immigration strategies that enable smaller communities to enhance their economic, social and demographic vitality.

The pending expiry of the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot is of significant concern to all pilot sites involved. As you are well aware, there is an acute shortage of workers that is being felt across all sectors of the economy, all regions of the country and affecting all sizes of business. This labour crisis is hampering economic recovery and restricting business growth, and without the extension of this pilot our rural and northern communities will be further disadvantaged.

To ensure continued support for immigrants to choose rural and northern communities, we are calling on the Government of Canada to extend the current Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot for another three years. We ask that in this extension you also approve the expansion of the geographic boundaries of participating communities who have so requested.
We thank you in advance for your consideration and would welcome the opportunity to meet with you to further elaborate our success stories and continued need for the program.


Debbi Nicholson, Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce

Leah Nord, Canadian Chamber of Commerce

Cheryl Link, Altona Chamber of Commerce

Carolynn Cancade, Castlegar and District Chamber of Commerce

Rob Clark, Moose Jaw & District Chamber of Commerce

Tom Thomson,Nelson and District Chamber of Commerce

Peter Chirico, North Bay & District Chamber of Commerce

Rory Ring., Sault Ste Marie Chamber of Commerce

Keitha Robson, Timmins Chamber of Commerce

Charla Robinson, Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce

Dan Proulx, Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce

Download the letter here.