IARC supports review into discrimination of migrant families but warns against “gamifying” the migration system

The Immigration Advice and Rights Centre (IARC) supports a review into the mechanism that forces migrant families to leave Australia because they don’t meet certain health requirements.

“A review into the significant costs threshold for visa health requirements is long overdue. The current threshold test is discriminatory and morally wrong,” IARC’s Principal Solicitor Joshua Strutt said.

“It means families that have called Australia home for years and made significant contributions to their communities face having to leave Australia simply because a family member was born with a disability.

“The same protections around discrimination should apply equally to everyone in Australia, regardless of visa status,” he said.

Mr Strutt says securing a deal to initiate this review is significant but warns against establishing a lottery style system for any visas.

“We welcome more opportunities for Pacific Island people to permanently migrate to Australia,” he said.

“IARC supports a visa system that is co-designed with Pacific Island countries but has reservations about a visa lottery system.

“Gamifying the migration system isn’t fair, for anyone. IARC has been calling for clearer and more
certain pathways to permanent residency in Australia for Pacific Island nationals.

“People should know how to get permanent residency and it should be objectively achievable. Not rely
on a game of chance.

“We have found that people put their lives on hold for years, waiting for their name to essentially be picked out of a hat. The system needs to be better. People need certainty,” he said.

IARC has made a joint submission with Unions NSW to the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee regarding the proposed ‘ballot system’ and proposed alternatives.

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