On Friday, Canada’s new, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, John McCallum, oversaw his first citizenship ceremony in honour of International Human Rights Day.
The ceremony was held at York Regional Police Headquarters, and saw 100 people from 28 countries sworn in as new Canadians.
“It was truly an honour to celebrate this momentous occasion, welcoming 100 new Canadian citizens as they joined the Canadian family – my first ceremony as Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship,” said McCallum. “Like many who came before them, today’s new citizens made sacrifices to immigrate and build new lives in Canada. Now, they contribute to the diversity that is one of Canada’s greatest strengths. To today’s new citizens, thank you for choosing to make Canada your new home. We are both honoured and strengthened by your decision.”
Canada is one of the most multicultural countries in the world. It is made up of over 200 ethnic origins, with 13 of those ethnic groups having Canadian populations over one million. What’s more, approximately one in five Canadians were born outside Canada.
To qualify to become a Canadian citizen you must be over 18 years of age and have been physically present in the country as a permanent resident for at least 1,460 days during the six years immediately before the date of your application. You must also be physically present for at least 183 days during each of four calendar years that are fully or partially within the six years immediately before the date of application.
You will also need to sit and pass a citizenship test and have met your personal income tax filing obligations in four taxation years that are fully or partially within the six years immediately before the date you apply.