CICan statement on comments regarding a potential cap on international student enrollment by federal officials

Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan), today, issued the following official statement in response to comments regarding a potential cap on international student enrollment by federal officials: 

Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) is troubled by the recent comments regarding a potential cap on international student enrollment by federal officials.  

Canada’s housing crisis is complex and multifaceted. We need sustainable solutions and an integrated approach that underscores shared responsibility across all levels of government. Although implementing a cap on international students may seem to provide temporary relief, it could have lasting adverse effects on our communities, including exacerbating current labour shortages. Furthermore, we want to emphasize that students are not to blame for Canada’s housing crisis; they are among those most impacted.  

Canada’s colleges and institutes have long recognized housing shortage challenges and have taken decisive action to accelerate the development of and approvals for building new accommodations. Our commitment to finding solutions that specifically address student housing is further fueled by the transition back to in-person learning and the resurgence in program demands post-pandemic. In our recent submission to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance, we reaffirm our willingness to be a part of the solution and ask the government to prioritize the collection of federal data on student housing essential for informed decision-making and effective action and invest $2.6 billion over three years in a new Student Housing Loan and Grant Program. 

Furthermore, CICan believes immigration is key to Canada’s growth and prosperity and recently published a submission to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), which outlines our recommendations for improving the International Student Program. We have also been working with IRCC this past year to develop an approach that would see sustainable growth in international student enrollments with better alignment to the availability of student supports and to labour market needs. We will continue to collaborate with the federal government to meet Canada’s labour and talent needs.    

About Colleges and Institutes Canada: 

Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) is the national and international voice of Canada’s largest post-secondary education network. It advocates, builds capacity, and drives knowledge to strengthen Canada’s publicly supported colleges, institutes, CEGEPs, and polytechnics. With more than 95% of Canadians living within 50 km of a member institution, and thanks to its extensive reach around the globe, CICan works to future-proof communities in Canada and abroad. 

We respectfully acknowledge that CICan’s offices in Ottawa are located on the traditional and unceded territory of the Algonquin Anishinaabe Nation.


For more information:

Katrina King

Senior Digital Communications Officer
Colleges and Institutes Canada
Twitter: @CollegeCan