Australian deportation policies bad for trans-Tasman relationship

Deportation transTasman harming relationship
The travel arrangements between Australia and New Zealand is one of the most seamless in the world. (Photo Brett Phibbs)

Australian deportation policies bad for trans-Tasman relationship, High Commissioner Chris Seed says

12 September 2018

Lucy Bennett – Political Reporter, NZ Herald

Australia’s deportation policies are not good public policy and are corroding the transtasman relationship, New Zealand’s High Commissioner Chris Seed has told an Australian Government Committee today.

Seed, whose posting ends this year, presented a submission to the Joint Standing Committee on Migration which is looking into the review processes around visa cancellations made on criminal grounds.

Seed told the Committee New Zealanders were disproportionately represented in the number of people being deported under Australia’s strict policies. In less than two decades, the rate had increased from around one a week to more than one a day.

High Commissioner Chris Seed told Australia’s Joint Standing Committee on Migration there was “acute concern” about the application of its deportation policy to the long-term New Zealand residents of Australia. (Photo: Brett Phibbs)

The travel arrangements between the two countries was one of the most seamless in the world and benefited citizens of each country who moved to the other.

“The vast majority of New Zealanders who move here do very well. We’re more employed, we pay more tax than any migrant group. We’re arguably the easiest integrated. It’s a great success story. Its the same of course for Australians who move east,” Seed said.

“But New Zealanders in Australia are now treated differently to the way Australians in New Zealand are treated. This is of particularly acute concern in Australia’s application of its deportation policy to the long-term New Zealand residents of Australia.”

Seed said the number of Kiwis deported from Australia had “skyrocketed” as a result of 2014 changes to the Migration Act.

Those changes, as well as others made in 2001, had left New Zealanders more vulnerable to deportation than any other nationality in Australia.

“Many of those consequences don’t look like good public policy outcomes to us and they’re having a corrosive impact on the otherwise strong relationship between New Zealand and Australia,” he said.

He raised the issue of New Zealanders who were long-term residents of Australia being deported.

[Read the NZ Herald article].

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