Skip to main content Start of content

About

43rd Parliament, 2nd Session
(September 23, 2020 - Present)
Select a different session
The Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration (the committee) examines orders of reference that the House of Commons refers to it. Orders of reference may relate to bills, proposed regulations specified in Section 5 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, and in Section 27.1 of the Citizenship Act, Estimates or Order in Council Appointments. The Committee may also study issues of its own choosing.

Pursuant to Standing Order 108(1) of the House of Commons, the committee has the same powers as other House of Commons Standing Committees, including the powers to make reports and to send for persons, papers and records.

Citizenship and Immigration Canada and the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada

In addition, the Committee studies and reports on all matters relating to the mandate, management and operation of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB). Such matters include:

  • the statute law relating to IRCC and/or IRB;
  • the program and policy objectives of IRCC and/or IRB, and their effectiveness in implementing their objectives;
  • the immediate, medium and long-term expenditure plans of IRCC and/or IRB, as well as their effectiveness in implementing their expenditure plans;
  • analysis of the relative success of IRCC and/or IRB, as measured by the results obtained as compared with its stated objectives; and
  • other matters, relating to the mandate, management, organization or operation of IRCC and/or IRB, as the Committee deems fit.

In July 2013, responsibility for certain areas of Passport Canada’s activities were transferred from the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. The committee has been empowered to undertake studies on these matters since that date.

Federal Multiculturalism Policy

Standing Order 108(3)(b) of the House of Commons mandates the committee to monitor implementation of the principles of the federal multiculturalism policy throughout the Government of Canada. However, implementation of the Canadian Multiculturalism Act, which had been the responsibility of the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration since 2008, was moved to the Minister of Canadian Heritage in 2015. Since then, the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage has examined issues related to the federal multiculturalism policy.

In the execution of its functions, each committee is normally assisted by a committee clerk, one or more analysts and a committee assistant. Occasional assistance is also provided by legislative clerks and lawyers from the Office of the Law Clerk and Parliamentary Counsel. These individuals are non-partisan and serve all members of the committee and representatives of all parties equally.

Committee Clerk

The clerk performs their duties and responsibilities under the direction of the committee and its Chair. As an expert in the rules of the House of Commons, the clerk may be requested to give advice to the Chair and members of the committee should a question of procedure arise. The clerk is the coordinator, organizer and liaison officer for the committee, and as such, will be in frequent contact with members’ staff. They are also responsible for inviting witnesses and dealing with all the details regarding their appearance before the committee.

Committee Assistant

The committee assistant provides a wide range of specialized administrative services for the organization of committee meetings and the publishing of documents on the committees’ Website. The committee assistant works with the clerk to meet the needs of committees.

Committee Analyst

The Library of Parliament’s analysts, who are subject-matter experts, provide authoritative, substantive, and timely research, analysis and information to all members of the committee. They are part of the committee’s institutional memory and are a unique resource for parliamentarians. Supported by research librarians, the analysts work individually or in multidisciplinary teams.

Analysts can prepare: briefing notes on the subjects being examined; detailed study plans; lists of proposed witnesses; analyses of an issue with a list of suggested questions; background papers; draft reports; news releases; and/or formal correspondence. Analysts with legal training can assist the committee regarding any substantive issues that may arise during the consideration of bills.

OTHER RESOURCES AVAILABLE AS REQUIRED

Parliamentary Counsel

Within the Office of the Law Clerk and Parliamentary Counsel, parliamentary counsel (Legislation) are available to assist members who are not in Cabinet with the preparation of private members’ bills or of amendments to government bills or others.

At various stages of the legislative process, members may propose amendments to bills. Amendments may first be proposed at the committee stage, during a committee’s clause-by-clause review of a bill. Amendments may also be proposed at the report stage, once a bill returns to the House.

Once a bill is sent to committee, the clerk of the committee provides the name of the parliamentary counsel (Legislation) responsible for the drafting of the amendments for a particular bill to the members.

Legislative Clerk

The legislative clerk serves all members of the committee as a specialist of the process by which a bill becomes law. They are available to give, upon request from members and their staff, advice on the admissibility of amendments when bills are referred to committee. The legislative clerk organizes the amendments into packages for committee stage, reviews all the committee amendments for procedural admissibility and prepares draft rulings for the Chair. During clause-by-clause consideration of bills in committee, a legislative clerk is in attendance to assist the committee with any procedural issues that may arise. The legislative clerk can also provide members with advice regarding the procedural admissibility of report stage amendments. When a bill is sent to committee, the clerk of the committee provides to the members the name of the legislative clerk assigned to the bill.

The Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO)

The Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) is an officer of Parliament created by the Parliament of Canada Act who supports Parliament by providing analysis, including analysis of macroeconomic and fiscal policy, for the purposes of raising the quality of parliamentary debate and promoting greater budget transparency and accountability.

The Parliament of Canada Act also provides the PBO with a mandate to, if requested by a committee, estimate the financial cost of any proposal over which Parliament has jurisdiction. Certain committees can also request research and analyses of the nation’s finances or economy, or of the estimates.

Further information on the PBO may be found at: http://www.pbo-dpb.gc.ca/en/

In addition to studying Estimates and Order-in-Council appointments, the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration considered a government bill and released substantive reports on various issues during the 42nd Parliament.

1. BILLS

Bill C-6, An Act to amend the Citizenship Act and to make consequential amendments to another Act.

(Please consult LEGISinfo for additional information regarding this bill.)

2. REPORTS

Report 4 – Apply Without Fear: Special Immigration Measures for Nationals of Haiti and Zimbabwe

Report 6 – Distress Call: How Canada’s Immigration Program Can Respond to Reach the Displaced and Most Vulnerable

Report 7 – After the Warm Welcome: Ensuring that Syrian Refugees Succeed

Report 8 – Family Reunification

Report 9 – Modernization of Client Service Delivery

Report 11 – Starting Again: Improving Government Oversight of Immigration Consultants

Report 12 – LGBTQ+ at Risk Abroad: Canada’s Call to Action

Report 14 – Immigration to Atlantic Canada: Moving to the Future

Report 15 – Building an Inclusive Canada: Bringing the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act in Step with Modern Values

Report 18 – Road to Recovery: Resettlement Issues of Yazidi Women and Children in Canada

Report 20 – Responding to Public Complaints: A Review of the Appointment, Training and Complaint Processes of the Immigration and Refugee Board

Report 23 – New Tools for the 21st Century—The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration and the Global Compact for Refugees: An Interim Report

Report 25 – Adapting Canada’s Immigration Policies to Today’s Realities

Report 26 – Improving Settlement Services Across Canada

The Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration does not intervene in individual immigration or citizenship files. Such inquiries should be directed to the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada Client Support Centre.