I would urge the minister to count the interrupted time for these caregivers towards their 24-month work requirement and then also, on the question of expired work permits for those individuals, because they're caught in a very difficult situation right now where they have lost their jobs because of COVID-19 and not through any fault of their own, and their work permit is coming to an expiration.... If they don't find a new employer, and it's difficult to do so at this time, they would be out of luck. They would not be able to get implied status, so it will be essential for them to be supported through this time. Otherwise, these workers who have come to take care of our families here in Canada are pretty well just left out in the cold. I would urge the minister to take action on that.
With respect to delay in spousal sponsorships, early in the pandemic I was informed that applications would continue to be processed. However, as the pandemic continues, issues and challenges with the processing of applications continue to emerge and, as a result, my office has seen numerous individuals faced with long and lengthy delays in their PR applications. This is specifically to do with spousal sponsorships where the standard time of processing is 12 months.
Mr. Mitch Hurley and his spouse tragically lost their newborn child as his wife was unable to get health care in Ecuador, and they're desperately waiting to be reunited here during this difficult time. Their application has been in the process for 16 months, and they cannot get an interview so that they can finish the application. Now they're required to extend their expired medical exams, which is very expensive and costly.
Can families with urgent needs have their applications expedited in processing and will the government waive the requirement for new medical examinations as a result of this lengthy delay?