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In July 2021, Canada launched a dedicated refugee stream to resettle up to 250 human rights defenders (HRDs) from around the globe per year, including their families. This initiative aims to protect at-risk HRDs who face significant dangers due to their work challenging powerful actors. Under this stream, IRCC currently accepts referrals from three partners: the UNHCR, Front Line Defenders (FLD), and Protect Defenders (PD).
In March 2023, following the expansion of Canada’s HRD stream, IRCC entered into a direct referral relationship with FLD and PD. These organizations can now identify and directly refer HRD refugees from their global caseload to Canada for resettlement.
The IJC plays a crucial role in this process by ensuring Iranian asylum seekers meet deadlines, provide accurate information, and overcome language barriers through indirect collaboration with PD. This program has significantly impacted Iranian asylum seekers, allowing a few to find safety in Canada. The regular notes of gratitude we receive from such individuals attest to our impact in this field.

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