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Celebrating Canada's Citizenship Week 2024

Canada is observing its yearly Citizenship Week, as announced by Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) Immigration Minister Marc Miller. He emphasized that this week invites Canadians to contemplate the essence of Canadian identity. Spanning from May 13 to May 19, the week will be commemorated with the Minister's participation in various citizenship ceremonies and gatherings. Additionally, he plans to visit grassroots organizations aiding newcomers by providing diverse services, including language training and employment assistance.

Between April 1, 2023, and March 31, 2024, Canada embraced 393,500 new citizens, surpassing the nearly 364,000 newcomers from the previous year.

In addition to this, Toronto will host its annual Newcomer Day later this month. On May 23, Nathan Phillips Square will offer resources on settlement services, employment opportunities, Canadian history, and more to all visitors. The event will also include a citizenship ceremony.

What are the advantages of becoming a Canadian citizen?

Becoming a Canadian citizen grants access to a multitude of rights and freedoms within a diverse society that promotes tolerance irrespective of factors such as race, religion, or gender.

Furthermore, Canadian citizenship provides eligibility for a Canadian passport, renowned as one of the most powerful globally, facilitating visa-free entry to over 100 countries. This means citizens can travel in and out of Canada without the hassle of obtaining visas or permits.

Citizenship also entails the right to participate in federal, provincial, and municipal elections, along with accessing a broader range of government benefits, including guaranteed free healthcare once a provincial health card is obtained.

Moreover, citizens benefit from significantly lower post-secondary education costs compared to international students.

How to Attain Canadian Citizenship

The path to Canadian citizenship involves holding permanent residency status, meeting residency criteria by residing in Canada for at least three of the past five years, with allowances for time spent as a temporary resident. Evidence of tax filing and proficiency in English or French, demonstrated through tests or education credentials, are also required. Finally, applicants must pass a citizenship test covering Canadian history, geography, and civic responsibilities.

Citizenship Ceremonies

Upon approval for Canadian citizenship, applicants are required to participate in a citizenship ceremony. During this ceremony, candidates will:

1. Recite the Oath of Citizenship.

2. Receive their citizenship certificate.

3. Sign the Oath or Affirmation of Citizenship form.

4. Sing the national anthem.

These ceremonies may occur in person before a judge or remotely via video link for those unable to attend in person.

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