Issue No. 19 - Gender-Based Violence and Access to Justice for International Students at Canadian Post-Secondary Institutions

March 2023

In the last two decades, the number of international students in Canada has tripled to over 600,000, which makes up more than 14% of overall enrolment in Canadian post-secondary institutions (Canadian Bureau for International Education [CBIE], 2018; see also De Moissac et al. 2020; Firang & Mensah, 2022). For example, 31% of the University of British Columbia’s (UBC) student body is comprised of international students (Dwyer, 2017). Similar rates are found at McGill (30.75%), Simon Fraser University (SFU) (20.7%, excluding graduate students), and the University of Toronto (U of T) (21%). Since 2000, the enrolment of international students has increased by 376.5% and, by 2019, international students’ contribution to the Canadian Gross Domestic Product (GDP) reached $21.6 billion (De Moissac et al. 2020; Firang & Mensah, 2022; Statistics Canada, 2018, 2020). Many of these students plan to remain in Canada after the completion of their post-secondary education. Specifically, as the CBEI (2016) found, approximately 51% of international students intend to apply for permanent residency following the completion of their degrees.

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