- On Tuesday, police were called to help with the commotion at a passport office in downtown Montreal, and enthusiastic visitors consented to stay the night to ensure their place in line.
- The opening of more specialised passport counters at more than 300 facilities and the addition of 600 additional staff members to handle passport applications were both announced by Service Canada in May.
Police were called in to aid with the chaos at a passport office in downtown Montreal on Tuesday, and eager travelers agreed to stay the night to guarantee their spot in line.
Some people now have to wait days instead of hours to get a passport.
In April, Sonia Basili personally delivered her son’s passport application.
She claims that she and her family were forced to stand in line starting at 6 p.m. the day before as she sat outside the Montreal office on Tuesday. She has a flight Wednesday night to France.
“My mother sat here before my husband dozed off. This morning when we went inside, it was a mess. We returned since we weren’t selected, and we’ll spend the night here before entering the building the following morning, “CTV National News was told by Basili.
She maintains her optimism but acknowledges that others may not be as fortunate as she is to have family members who can sit in when necessary.
Basili claims she was forced to skip work to stand in line.
What happens after we enter the building? She questioned. Will we make it, or will we be stranded outdoors and spend the following night there?
Following two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a surge in passport applications, which has led to significant backlogs and forced some Canadians to postpone or cancel their vacation plans, potentially costing them thousands of dollars.
One Vancouverite paid for a round-way airfare to Edmonton just to receive her passport in time for a trip to Las Vegas, while others offered to wait in line for passport applicants in exchange for a fee. On TikTok, she shared a video of her experience.
Service Canada announced in May that it had added 600 extra staff members to handle passport applications and opened more specialized passport counters at more than 300 centers.
Minister of Families, Children, and Social Development Karina Gould stated that 600 more people had been hired since January and that another 600 were being hired.
“hundreds of employees from Immigration and the CRA (Canada Revenue Agency) were transferred internally inside Service Canada. We are discussing ways to increase the workforce with Global Affairs and other agencies to ensure Canadians get their passports on schedule.”
Passport applicants won’t have to set up camp outside, thanks to a ticketing system that will soon be in place.
Source: CTV News
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