Feds announce four new passport service sites as backlog continues

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OTTAWA — The federal government is adding new passport service locations across Canada as a backlog in processing applications continues.

Social Development Minister Karina Gould says people can now apply for and pick up passports at four additional Service Canada centres in Alberta, Ontario, Quebec and Prince Edward Island.

Nearly 1.1 million applications for new and renewed passports have been filed since April as pandemic restrictions loosen and Canadians resume travelling.

More than one-quarter of those haven't yet been processed.

In the first week of August, the number of passports issued within 40 business days fell to 72 per cent from 81 per cent the week before.

While government statistics show the system is starting to catch up with demand, a large backlog remains particularly for applications submitted by mail.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 17, 2022.

The Canadian Press