Other ways for admission to third countries (Complementary Pathways)

What are complementary pathways (CPs)?

Complementary pathways for admission are safe and regulated avenues for refugees that complement resettlement by providing lawful stay in a third country where their international protection needs are met.

Complementary Pathways (CP) programme(s) are diverse in nature but they include the following:

  • Family reunification
  • Community sponsorship of refugees (e.g. United Church of Canada)
  • Education Opportunities (e.g. World Service University of Canada (WUSC) – Student Refugee Program)
  • Employment/ Labor mobility Opportunities (e.g. EMPP Canada)
  • Humanitarian admissions
  • Humanitarian visas
  • Other safe and regulated avenues distinct from those mentioned above

Humanitarian visas can be used to admit individuals in need of international protection to a third country where they are sometimes subsequently provided the opportunity to apply for asylum, including through expedited procedures. Humanitarian visas have also been used to facilitate the admission of family members who would not otherwise qualify for family reunification under existing legislation, as well as other vulnerable refugees who cannot access effective protection in their first countries of asylum. In addition to being a stand-alone pathway, humanitarian visas can also be used as a tool to facilitate other pathways to a third country, such as community or private sponsorship programmes, or education opportunities.

Who is eligible to apply and the requirements for admission vary between different countries.

How can I / my family apply for a humanitarian visa?

Yes, You can apply for the Humanitarian Visa. As it is often to admit individuals in need of international protection to a third country where they are given the opportunity to formally apply for asylum upon arrival, including through expedited procedures. In this regard, they differ from humanitarian admission programmes through which individual legal status is often determined prior to arrival in the third country. Humanitarian visas have also been used to facilitate the admission of family members who would not otherwise qualify for family reunification under existing legislation, as well as other vulnerable refugees who cannot access effective protection in their first countries of asylum. In addition, humanitarian visas can be used to admit refugees to a third country as part of community sponsorship programmes.


See also

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