SSI welcomes this morning’s Federal Government announcement of new pathways to permanent residency that will end years of uncertainty for refugees who have been living on temporary visas.
The Federal Government announced this morning that, from February 14, Individuals who hold a Temporary Protection Visa (TPV) or a Safe Haven Enterprise Visa (SHEV) are now eligible to apply for new permanent visas. This visa is known as the Resolution of Status Visa (RoS) (Subclass 851).
SSI Acting CEO Sonia Vignjevic welcomed this announcement as a compassionate step forward that would improve the security and wellbeing of individuals and families who have been found to be refugees but have been living on rolling temporary visas for up to 10 years.
“Fairness and compassion are the cornerstones of a strong migration system, and we look forward to the resolution of a period of prolonged uncertainty for individuals and families who have come to our country to live lives that are free from war and persecution,” she said.
“These families and children have spent a decade building lives and contributing to Australia, despite facing uncertainty about their future here. We commend the Government on taking this positive step forward to improve the wellbeing and quality of life for this community.
“These changes were among those SSI put forward in its pre-budget submission and we are grateful to the government for listening to the sector and upholding this pre-election commitment.”
Ms Vignjevic said she also welcomed the government’s commitment of funding for specialist legal service providers to assist TPV and SHEV holders with the visa application process.
“This additional funding will ensure the sector is equipped to offer the practical support that will enable a smooth transition to permanency for 19,000 refugees,” she said.
For in-language information sessions on the changes, or to find out more about eligibility and how to apply, visit the Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA) dedicated resource page.