Statistics from Canada's Citizenship and Immigration Department reveal a significant drop in the number of visas issued for family members living outside of the country. Last year, Canada issued 16,000 visas for family members, but that number is expected to be closer to 11,000 over the next year.
The category facing the biggest drop off is parents and grandparents. Currently, there are more than 140,000 parents and grandparents waiting for visas to Canada.
Jason Kenney, who currently serves as Canada's Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism says the change is necessary to expedite visas for spouses and children.
"I know that the most popular thing they could do politically would be to say that this year, we're going to go from 14,000 to 100,000 parents and grandparents," Kenney said. "But it wouldn't be responsible because that means fewer economic immigrants coming and paying taxes, or fewer refugees to save from refugee camps."
For more information, see CBC News.
Updated: Tue, Feb 15th 2011 @ 1:21pm EST