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Migrants Will Have To Wait Four Years Before Getting Access To Welfare Under New Crackdown

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Migrants Will Have To Wait Four Years Before Getting Access To Welfare Under New Crackdown

The government has announced a new welfare policy for newcomers to Australia.

In an effort to curb the rate of foreigners using taxpayer-funded benefits, the Coalition has announced a new campaign that will kick into gear on 1 January 2022.

Migrants who enter the country from the start of next year will have to wait for at least four years before getting access to three types of benefits.

They won't be able to receive family tax benefits, paid parental leave, and carers payments until the new time frame has elapsed.

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Currently, the family tax benefit B can be accessed immediately for a migrant. They have to wait one year for family tax benefit A and two years for paid parental and carers leave.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

This new approach will bring the three welfare areas in line with the four-year waiting period required for JobSeeker unemployment benefits and youth allowance.

Officials estimate this new policy will affect around 13,200 people and roughly 45,000 families in the financial year.

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According to the Guardian, it will save the government around $671 million over several years.

The savings will be 'redirected by the government to fund policy priorities'.

The policy won't affect migrants are granted permanent residency before the January 1 cutoff date.

The Australian Council of Social Services' Cassandra Goldie is concerned the policy will either deter migrants from coming to our country or it will leave people vulnerable.

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"That is a big cut to social security. We cannot leave people who are newly arrived in Australia in destitution," Ms Goldie said.

Dr Robertson, from University of Western Sydney, added: "A lot of onshore migrants have already been in Australia for a really long time before they get permanent residency.

"So they've often been living in Australia and paying tax without access to benefits."

The Morrison government said in the budget papers that around 160,000 migrant visas are approved every year.

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But officials don't expect to see 'a gradual return of temporary and permanent migrants' until roughly the middle of 2022.

The budget papers state: "The rate of international arrivals will continue to be constrained by state and territory quarantine caps over 2021 and the first half of 2022, with the exception of passengers from Safe Travel Zones."

While the forecast for net migration is due to be only around 77,000 between 2021 to 2022, it's expected to explode to 235,000 in 2024-25.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Australia

Stewart Perrie
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