Showing posts with label migrant. Show all posts
Showing posts with label migrant. Show all posts

Monday, May 04, 2009

Illegal immigrants who overstay visas will no longer be put in detention camps

ILLEGAL immigrants will no longer be locked up and deported when caught by authorities, in a major softening of immigration procedures.

Instead, people who overstay their visas will be invited into an immigration office and could even get temporary bridging visas.

Immigration officers have been instructed not to detain visa violators unless they are known to be violent criminals or have previously been instructed to leave.

Until last week, illegal foreigners were immediately detained at detention centres and put on planes home within weeks.

The new approach is in line with a general softening of immigration policy by the Rudd Government.

Under the policy, officers are required to issue illegal foreigners with bridging visas and work with them to get them home.

"We basically have to invite them into the office for a coffee," an insider within the department said.

"They can get a couple of weeks or six months, whatever it takes to get them home without detaining them."

Mandatory detention was axed last year, but until now only asylum seekers have been allowed to live in the community.

The new directive from Immigration Minister Chris Evans' office was issued to immigration officers verbally last week.

There are almost 50,000 visa overstayers living illegally in Australia.

More than one in 10 is from China.

Entrants from the US, Malaysia and Britain are also big overstayers.

Most come in on tourist visas, but about 3600 are foreign students who disappear into the community when their course is over.

The Government has also closed down offshore processing facilities on Nauru and Manus Island.

Senator Evans' directive has divided opinion within department ranks, with some fearing the softer approach could send a dangerous message.

"I guess it says people can pretty much do whatever they want now," the insider said.

"They've been caught, but they can stay and go home when they want."

The move could open the floodgates for unwelcome visitors.

"It certainly could be open for exploitation," the insider said. "Prisons are not nice places to be in. Many of these people are not criminals, but I guess it doesn't convey a strong message."

Senator Evans said detention would only be used as a last resort.

"The presumption will be that persons will remain in the community while their immigration status is resolved," he said.

"If a person is complying with immigration processes and is not a risk to the community, then detention in a detention centre cannot be justified.

"The department will have to justify a decision to detain - not presume detention."

Friday, February 20, 2009

457 visas 'may cost local-born jobs'

457 visas 'may cost local-born jobs' | Australian IT
Paul Maley | February 20, 2009

AUSTRALIA'S record intake of temporary skilled migrants during the economic downturn could boost the number of Australian-born unemployed, as research suggests it is being used as a "back door" to permanent entry by low-wage workers.
The claim comes from Monash University population expert Bob Birrell, who said more of Australia's permanent skilled migrants were being sourced from the 457 visa program, which was drawing on workers from low-wage countries in increasing numbers. The visas are widely used in the ICT industry.

"People at the lower end of the spectrum are becoming permanent residents," Professor Birrell said. "They're vulnerable to exploitation because the employer knows they're not going to quibble with what he's offering them because they're desperate to get the permanent resident nomination."

As the global recession worsens, Professor Birrell said it was time for the Rudd Government to rethink its record high migration intake.

He said the tough economic climate would give employers added incentives to employ or retain cheap overseas labour in the place of local workers.

Professor Birrell, a long-time critic of a high migration quota, said the research, which was co-authored by Ernest Healy and 457 visa expert Bob Kinnaird, was in response to Immigration Minister Chris Evans's decision in December to give priority to migrants with a job or with critically needed skills.

That decision was seen as an alternative to cutting the migrant quota, an option flagged by Kevin Rudd last year in response to the worsening economic conditions.

Last May, Senator Evans announced an increase in the permanent migration program of 37,500. The increase brought the total number of skilled migrants to 133,500, plus 56,500 family reunion places and 13,500 humanitarian visas.

Overall, Australia is taking more than 200,000 new migrants a year.

In 2007-08, about 58,050 migrants came in under the 457 program, a figure that excludes their family members.

Professor Birrell said, in that year, about 90 per cent of the 17,760 permanent migrants who were sponsored by an employer onshore were former 457 visa holders.

Holders of 457 visas are subject to less stringent language requirements and there is no labour market testing, meaning employers do not have to demonstrate that the position cannot be filled locally.

A minimum salary level of $43,440 applies for most 457 visa workers.

In a trend that has alarmed unions, who fear the 457 program is being exploited by business to undercut wages, the program is increasingly sourcing workers from the developing world.

In 2007-08, 8250 Indian workers came in under the program, compared with 2880 in 2004-05.

Over the same period, the number of Filipino workers jumped from 600 to 5120, and the number of Chinese workers rose from 930 to 3360.

A spokesman for Senator Evans said yesterday the 457 program had sharply declined amid worsening financial conditions. "Figures show that application rates for subclass 457 visas in January 2009 are now 30per cent lower than in September 2008, when the economic downturn struck," the spokesman said.

Furthermore, plans to introduce market rates for 457 workers would effectively make them a more expensive option, the spokesman said.

A cut in next year's migration program was also likely, he added.

Monday, December 22, 2008

amnesty for illegal migrants

The Forerunner • View topic - Legal temporary-worker status for illegal immigrants?
Focusing on whether illegals ought to be granted amnesty if they meet certain qualifications is not the issue at all.

The logical question to ask is this: What would happen to the numbers of illegals entering our country each year if housing, education, Social Security, and legal services were not made available to them at all. If the United States would return to a pre-New Deal social order, which would be closer to a biblical social order, "illegal" immigration would not even be an issue.

Scripture states:

"If a man will not work, let him not eat" (2 Thessalonians 3:10 ).

The problem is not illegal immigration. The problem is the New Deal and Great Society programs which have led an entire class of people into financial bondage and dependence on the "Great Savior State" socialist programs that drain the rich and keep the poor poor.

If these programs were shut down, then there would simply be no problem with illegal immigration.

If we allowed immigration rights to hard working people who want to succeed and pursue the American dream, then we would have the strongest economy in the world. But in order to do so, we would first have to know who these people are.

I've always thought it is ridiculous to require a green card and residency status first for people who want to work. All this does is ensure that the socialist programs will continue to threaten the financial security of our future.

I propose allowing people to work in the country for a period of one year before they would be allowed to apply for residency. If they can show that they are able to work for one year with no financial asistance from the government and not violate any laws, then they ought to be given temporary worker status and the opportunity to apply for residency. If they work for two more years without assistance, they ought to be granted permanent resident status. If they continue for three years after that, they should be granted citizenship. But the qualification for that six year period ought to be the ability to support themselves.

I believe that the hardest working people in the country are the immigrants who come here out of a love of freedom and dignity. We ought to welcome as many of these people as possible.

The logical transistion to this sane policy would be to grant amnesty to "illegals" who are otherwise law-abiding and hard working.