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More articles in Citizenship
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Benefits and Responsibilities of Canadian Citizenship
All Canadians have certain rights and responsibilities. Many
of these rights are defined in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms,
which legally protects the basic rights and freedoms of everyone in
Canada. Some of these
rights and freedoms are
- legal rights, such as the right to a fair trial;
- equality rights, such as the right to protection
- mobility rights, such as the right to live and work
anywhere in Canada;
- Aboriginal peoples' rights; and
- basic freedoms, such as freedom of thought, speech,
religion and peaceful assembly.
Some citizenship rights are defined in Canadian laws. One such
right is the right to be given
Canadian Citizenship rights and benefits
When you become a Canadian citizen, you will have new rights and responsibilities.
Under the Canadian
Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Canadian citizens have the right to
- be candidates in federal,
provincial and territorial elections;
- be educated in either
- apply for a Canadian
- vote in federal and
provincial or territorial elections; and
- enter and leave Canada
- preference for jobs in the federal government.
Citizenship also brings responsibilities. For example, voting
in elections is both a right and a responsibility. Before you read the next
section, review the list of rights and try to think of the responsibilities that
come with them.
All Canadian citizens have the responsibility to
- vote in elections;
- help others in the
- care for and protect our
heritage and environment;
- obey Canada's laws;
- express opinions freely
while respecting the rights and freedoms of others; and
- eliminate discrimination
Getting involved in Canada
Being a Canadian citizen is more than voting and obeying laws.
Being a citizen also means getting involved in your community and your country.
Everyone has something to give to make Canada a better place. Here are some ways
- join a community group such as an environmental group;
- volunteer to work on an election campaign for a candidate
of your choice;
- help your neighbours;
- work with others to solve problems in your community; and
- become a candidate in an election.
How to Become a Canadian Citizen
To become a Canadian citizen,
- be a permanent resident of
- be 18 years old or older;
- have lived in Canada for
at least three of the four years before applying for citizenship;
- speak either English or
- know Canada's history and
- know about Canada's system
of government and the rights and responsibilities of citizenship.
In order to become a Canadian
Citizen, you need to first become a permanent resident of Canada. If you are not already a permanent resident of Canada you may start the process by completing
the Canadian immigration evaluation form.