Children granted bridging visas

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Immigration Minister Scott Morrison has announced that some children and their families, currently being held in asylum seeker detention in Australia, will be released into the community. 

However, the new bridging visa arrangements will not apply to all children currently being held and there will be conditions. For the purpose of this release, ‘children’ are defined as ‘aged under ten’, which represents, we’re told, 150 out of approximately 500. The minister has also been adamant that this new arrangement expressly precludes the 148 children still on Christmas Island and 193 on Nauru. Furthermore, it only applies to children whose detention predates 19 July 2013, the date on which the former Rudd Labor government announced that all new arrivals, by boat, would be sent to offshore detention. Morrison says that the bridging visas will be determined on a case by case basis and that he is confident that a large number of those eligible can be moved into the new visa program before the end of the year.

But there are already 1547 children and their families in community detention, many of whom have no visa or right to work and are required to report regularly to immigration officials. It’s unclear how the new program may affect this large group.

The minister also told the ABC AM program that, “We still have some consultations we have to do with service providers. Because what this announcement does is ensures there’s additional support provided to children under the age of 10 who are released with their families on bridging visas.’’

He further claimed that, “this is the dividend of stopping the boats and the new measure will save tax payers more than $50 million over the forward estimates.’’

Read more at ABC.net.au

Reead more at SMH.com.au

Opinion: Tokenism refined to an artform

In the last two days we’ve been treated to the unprecedented spectacle of Immigration Minister Scott Morrison being all over the media like a rash.

This is the same member of the Abbott cabinet who has refined stonewalling to a fine art. A man whose speciality is to call ‘non press conferences’ at which the baying media elicit no more than the now predictable clichés of ‘no comment’ and ‘operational matters’. Is this the same minister who has consistently treated with disdain the media and, more importantly the Australian electorate, to whom he should be beholden for his high office and whose interests he should respect? Has he experienced some strange epiphany? Hardly!

In announcing, very publicly, an apparent easing of the long-running internment conditions for some younger children and their families, Morrison is plainly responding to the ever-widening opposition to this particularly ugly aspect of the Government’s policy on asylum seekers who arrive ‘illegally’ by boat.

While hailed by his parliamentary colleagues, including the prime minister, as the very epitome of a strong, effective minister, Morrison is accumulating an impressive array of opponents far beyond the official parliamentary opposition. His attempts to reintroduce temporary protection visas have been rejected by the High Court, as has his new arbitrary definition for assessing the risk of persecution for refugees returned to the countries from which they fled.

The President of the Australian Human Rights Commission, Prof Gillian Triggs, who recently visited Christmas Island, reported ‘an unprecedented rate of self- harm among children and that the ‘desperation is palpable.’ Perhaps even more relevant is that consistent thorn in the Abbott Government’s side, the post 1 July 2014 Senate and, more specifically, the crossbench.

Morrison has been blocked by the crossbench, notably, the three Palmer United Party senators who have, thus far, complied with their leader Clive Palmer’s very public opposition to detaining any children in detention, both in Australia and offshore. So is the modest concession of releasing some young children and their families intended to extract an agreement from the PUP senators?

We can hardly be blamed for being sceptical about Morrison’s true motivation in so publicly grandstanding over such a belated, partial moderation in his policy on child asylum seekers. When you’ve spent so long treating with contempt the Australian electorate and hiding behind the military to avoid any scrutiny of your actions, then the minister shouldn’t expect us to passively accept his latest ‘spin.’

What do you think? Should we give the minister credit for easing the conditions for some young children and their families? Or, is this just a cynical exercise to placate some of his growing number of critics? Or is it aimed at persuading the Senate to allow him to reintroduce temporary protection visas?

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Written by David Fallick

238 Comments

Total Comments: 238
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    Where are ALL these people going to LIVE??? What are they “Going to Live on? WHO are they going to Live Off?? This is EXACTLY why Australia has Sooooo much Un employment. The jobs MUST be there to be had and these are the people that are obtaining them. Mr Morrison.. Charity Begins at Home.

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      At david Fallicks house we hope… he must have plenty of room!!!!

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      Look at the Size of the Gardens at Kirribilli Castle !! You could build a couple of dozen Homes in there for the Homeless ??

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      It has been revealed that scotty’ is the Phantom, so don’t worry, be happy.

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      Tony’s apartment is not used, as he bunks down with the security chappies, you could fit twenty or so in there and they would get service with it.

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      There is a Vacant 1 Person Unit here now where I live ! You could Cram about 14 in there ?? Not much room ! They will have to sleep on top of each other ! But I think they are used to that by the Amount of them !!

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      The government is currently spending millions keeping children who have committed no crime locked up indefinitely. It is much cheaper to let the m live in the community as most civilised countries do.

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      Got it on 1. Who will pay for these bludgers? The taxpayers of Australia and those worse hit by it, the poorest in the land, the working families on low incomes, pensioners, disabled and unemployed. 200,000 shortage of homes and yet we are selling to Chinese investors who are letting them sit vacant often to build equity or let to overseas students. 55,000 short homes when Rudd got in he said so. But he then brought in over 300,000 a year for 2 years and opened the borders to hordes who have no skills and wont be able to work even if they intended too. And we have only 100,000 new jobs a year in reality – work it out. Pity the politicians cant but then they are enthralled to the left playing politics whilst Australia hurts. SMH ABC The AGE all left wing railing Abbott but actually doing more harm as we stake one step forward and then 2 back under their constant attacks on any idea of keeping us in work and our living standards intact.

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      Doesn’t Immigration ask them WHO FUNDED YOU ?? OR How are You going to pay the People Smugglers ???..
      The only mob with any funds to Shout them out here is ISIS !!

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      No doubt Christine Milne, Sarah Hanson-Young and that woman Trigg …all great champions of those who come via the people smugglers will no doubt open their homes and arms to all these children!!

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      Yes !! And then claim 50 Grand each for PPL !!

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    How many boats have come since Scott Morrison has been in control?How many lives have been saved by this?Many of these “economic illegals ” are bypassing countries they could go to to come here.They put their children at risk by so doing.

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    Its so wonderful to read these bigoted ill informed comments. They are here legally and already living here. They are children under 10 who cannot work. They will not affect unemployment. If they are already here at the government’s expense in detention and they are released into the community temporarily and people are willing to care for them at their own expense (which already happens) what cost is there to the government?
    Believe it or not, there are more kindhearted people in Australia who are willing to spend their money caring for young children.

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      Send Me a Dozen Please !!

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      Masonite..These Caring people are Subsidised by the Tax Payer, You and Me pay through All the RISES We have to Pay. Mr Abbott, Morrison,Hockey etc , don’t pay for these people to stay in Australia.
      I agree to have “Refugees” come to OZ, but how about the Government do it in a Correct Manner so as to Benefit Us ALL.

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      Masonite.. Hope you put your money where your mouth is and open up your doors to as many as you can fit into your abode. And how dare you call people ill informed bigots for simply having an opinion. Your comment smells of an arrogant response from an ignorant person.

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      I guess that Masonite did not notice the phrase “with their families” in the announcement.

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      Absolutely correct. All the garbage about costs is red herring. We could release them into the community here at a fraction of the cost, as many countries do, who have many more refugees to process. It costs an absolute mint to run our “offshore concentration camps” and “prison ships”. Those who are lacking human compassion are always bleating about the cost of everything, and should be persuaded at least on that basis, that there is a better way.

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      Interesting I am currently in Sweden which has a very much open door policy to refugees. The interesting thing is that they are very selective about where they let them live. They are all accommodated in outlying towns or suburbs where there are labor shortages. Feelings are starting to run high about the numbers of theses people now that unemployment is starting to rise.

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      Well Masonite you spend your money caring for these children, not mine! For these boat people this is NOT the first safe port of call, they have chosen to come here, jump the queue. Not only that they breed like cockroaches. With over 50,000 people in Sydney waiting for public housing where are they going to live, where are the jobs?

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      They go first ! Where’s Your Hospitality ??..

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      sorry particolor, my oversight, of course they go first

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      That’s the last time I use a Persian Rug for a Welcome Mat !!

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    Keeping People cooped up like Chickens on Tropical Islands is not Humane !! Let them all in !!
    Chuck another Shrimp on the Barbie !

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    There we are again! Poor little children like the ones in Gaza carrying AK47 and firing rockets into Israel! The majority been Muslim they will be taken by the Muslim community I guess endoctrinated in the local mosque and when they’re big enough they can join ISIS to fight for their ideals, stop kidding ourselves!

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    could not agree more Brissyblond ywo of the highest unemployment figures are where we live and also the next area up from us. We do not need any more of morrison’s mob living here.

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    another bleeding heart – suggest go out to western suburbs of Sydney or up and down NSW coast – hundreds of thousands are very happy with asylum seeker policies – the Green don’t BUT they don’t represent mainstream views of Australians. The ABC political comments are also biased on this issue. Of course we could go back to Marles and labor and open up the flood gates like Rudd did – then again I think not. Sorry David your articles leaves me cold and I suspect Morrison could not give a damn what you say

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    Sorry I forgot to add – who put these kids in detention centres – I’ll give you a clue David – it was not Morrison – it was labor and their pathetic border protection policies. Please don’t quote Gillian Triggs – extreme left wing – the conservatives would love to get rid of Human Rights Commission – just another body that is a waste of taxpayers money set up by Gillard – the worst PM since WW2 – and I’ve lived under them all.

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      I don’t care who put them in detention centres, as long as they stay there! children should stay with their parents! that way they can learn the proper self harm procedures.

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      It was refreshing to see Gillian Trigg gasping like a guppie out of water when she so ill-advisedly attempted to compare our detention centres with main stream prisons. And who put her back on the right track?……..None other than that dreadful man Scott Morrison who, if the planets align favourably, may one day be our PM (I hope)

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      Ms Trigg no match for Mr Morrison. She was left up the creek without a paddle(s)

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      Also Gillian Trigg was caught out on a lie when she said “armed guards” and was corrected and was told “there are no armed guards”. She would not retract her incorrect comment.

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    If one of Morrison’s motivations is aimed at persuading the Senate to re-introduce the Temporary Protection Visa, then I give him full credit! In the short time the Coalition have been in power, many $millions of taxpayers’ earnings have been saved by stopping the endless flow of queue jumpers. The billions of $ that have been spent on them could have been injected into our health system. Thank you Scott Morrison for putting Australians first!

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    Whatsoever you do to the least of my brothers that you do unto me says Jesus. And quite frankly who cares when these children came. They need help. If they see our hatred of them how can we be a good influence? If we are supposed to be a Christian nation behave like one use your influence for good.

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      I like that, every session of every Parliament in Australia should open with that read out and repeated by those present.

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      Sorry ‘beidronka, was meant to be ” Who is Jesus”

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      Forget the Christian ethics biedronka, the parents of these kids are all muslims, and the kids will be brought up that way, just what we need, more bloody muslims! We’ll be living under sharia law before you know it, especially if our govt continue to be so ‘politically correct” Today 60 leaders knocked back the proposed anti terrorism laws by Abbott……unfortunate that muslims are associated with terrorism, wonder how that happened?? Ever hear from the ‘moderates”?

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