According to the government's website on service standards, while the target is to process applications 80% of the time within the standard, the reality is that in the provincial nominee program the process performance is at 5% of standard. The performance of the Quebec-selected skilled workers program sees 2% of applications done within the standard. In the skilled trades program—the express entry, of which the minister is very proud—the performance standard is 38% of applications within standard.
While setting standards is great, you're not meeting them for these critical areas.
I want to highlight this again, tying it to the fact that the ministry underspent and cut staff FTEs significantly, by close to 200. That is the kind of performance we're seeing. Is it a wonder that we have such long wait times in processing? I want to highlight this as an issue.
Another issue is that at the last committee meeting, the official said that when a form is missing in an application, or a signature or something is missing, they would contact the applicant to have it fixed, instead of sending the whole application back.
I have two active cases in which the application was sent back and as a result, the people's work permits expired. This creates great problems for them.
Social media is lit up, because somebody had put out something asking the community what their experience has been. Social media is lit up with people with lots of problems with respect to officials not processing these applications as such.
I want to flag these issues to your attention, Minister, and I hope they get fixed.
I'd like to ask a question about refugee sponsorship. In the Group of Five community sponsorships, the refugees who need sponsorship are required to provide a refugee determination certificate. This requirement was waived between 2015 and 2017 for the government to get their Syrian refugee initiative numbers up. This requirement is also not required for any other privately sponsored refugee stream.
Why, then, do we have this for the Group of Five sponsorships?