Turnbull government cut migration totals and made it harder for immigrant families settling in Australia at the same time. A lot of financial changes have been made that will severely affect the financial status of immigrants, who already suffer at the hands of the financial crisis of moving to a new country. On April 1, Turnbull government announced modification in the assurance of support scheme, a program that doesn’t allow migrants to bring family members to Australia unless they are able to demonstrate their financial capacity to look after them.
The change is designed to keep poor migrant families away from Australia. Earlier, couples earning $45,185 annual income together could apply for bringing their parents to Australia, but now the minimum annual income has been increased to $115,475 for couples and $86,606 for a single person applying. These income level brackets mean millions of families won’t be able to bring their parents to stay with them in Australia. Turnbull government is also planning to increase the bank guarantee requirements for certain visas from April 1, 2019, onward. It means an assurer should guarantee $15,000 if he wants to bring a parent to Australia using the Contributory Parent or Aged Parent visa, an increase from $10,000 minimum guarantee existent currently.
Immigrants are confused and worried
Chelsea Liu, an immigrant advocate in Australia who mostly has Chinese clients, said they are worried and confused and already thinking about taking back their applications. Increase in minimum financial requirements falls perfectly in line with Peter Dutton, Australian home minister’s, plan to bring down net immigration. Scott Morrison, treasurer of the government, said that bringing down immigration will cost the national economy $5 billion over the next four years. Dutton is on a mission to bring down net immigration from 210,000 to 190,000 because he feels that Australia is getting overpopulated when it only has a population of 25 million and is the sixth largest in the world by size.