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Sample social media posts for #Nobody Left Behind & RCOA research report December 2020

Refugee Council of Australia has released new report RCOA data summary   revealing the shocking increase of homelessness and hunger amongst people seeking asylum in Australia. 

Listen to coverage on RN’s breakfast show here: https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/breakfast/asylum-seekers-left-behind-in-covid-recovery/12996902 .  Email senator.ruston@aph.gov.au to ask her to provide basic income support for people seeking asylum, today – this is the easy and affordable fix.  Phone: 1300 857 022

 #NobodyLeftBehind

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“Can you believe that in Australia right now, children are being treated for malnutrition so serious that it could impact their development?   For people seeking asylum in Australia, things are getting worse. Refugee Council of Australia has released new data RCOA data summary showing the shocking extent of the hunger and homelessness they are experiencing, because they are not provided any income safety net through Centrelink. Email senator.ruston@aph.gov.au to ask her to provide basic income support for people seeking asylum, today – this is the easy and affordable fix.”   Phone: 1300 857 022  #NobodyLeftBehind

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“What meals are you planning this festive season? Sadly, for thousands of people seeking asylum in Australia, an empty plate may be all they have as they rely on food banks for survival, and make agonising decisions between paying the rent and feeding their family. Call and email senator.ruston@aph.gov.au to ask her to provide basic income support for people seeking asylum, today – this is the easy and affordable fix.”  Phone: 1300 857 022   #NobodyLeftBehind

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People seeking asylum struggle to pay rent.  New research from Refugee Council of Australia has revealed that  whilst many Australians are now getting back to work after lockdowns, people seeking asylum are struggling more than ever as they find it difficult to find work, and do not receive any Centrelink support. Listen to the Radio National report here.

https://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/breakfast/asylum-seekers-left-behind-in-covid-recovery/12996902

Call and email senator.ruston@aph.gov.au to ask her to provide basic income support for people seeking asylum. Phone: 1300 857 022 

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“If you had to choose between feeding your family and paying the rent, what would you do? Sadly, thousands of people seeking asylum in Australia are making this heartbreaking choice because they are unable to find employment, and do not receive any Centrelink payments. Refugee Council of Australia  has published research RCOA data summary showing the extent of this crisis, with 70% skipping meals and over half at imminent risk of homelessness, while GPs are treating kids for malnutrition. As our country begins to recover from this crisis, our leaders must ensure there is #NobodyLeftBehind. Call and email senator.ruston@aph.gov.au to ask her to provide basic income support for people seeking asylum. Phone: 1300 857 022. 

Email Action – Income Support

Thanks to Canberra Refugee Action Coalition for sharing this video.

See list of contacts for Premiers and key ministers at the bottom of this page and also here:

People seeking asylum need income support – just like everyone else.

CALLING ON YOU to email politicians URGENTLY about this important issue 

Background Information for letter-writers

·         Given their temporary and insecure visa status, many people on Bridging Visas are not able to find secure work – in the current COVID-19 crisis most of those who did have casual work or part-time work are now unemployed.  

·         People seeking asylum are not currently included in the income support arrangements that have been put in place as a COVID-19 crisis response.  

·         Without income support people cannot pay their rent or feed their families and must rely on charity and the goodwill of Australians for rent, food and healthcare to survive. 

·         Charity organisations and local community groups will be overwhelmed in the coming weeks and months due to COVID-19 economic and health impacts.

·         The Federal Government has rightly responded to the COVID-19 economic crisis by providing income support for people who have no income –people seeking asylum must be included.   

Please note that this is focussed on people seeking asylum – people recognised as refugees on TPVs, SHEVs and Permanent Visas are eligible for the equivalent of Job Seeker payments – people on Bridging Visas are not eligible.    See Factsheet: Not all people on temporary visas can return home.

Also see article in The Guardian on Asylum Seekers slip through Australia’s Coronavirus Safety Net. A pdf copy of the article is below

This is very important – we must make every effort to ensure that all refugees and people seeking asylum have income support.   

Please:

  • Email and phone relevant politicians.  IMPORTANT:  This approach is intended to generate pressure for change through the National COVID cabinet – to overturn the current  ‘destitution policy’ favoured by Minister Dutton and  PM Scott Morrison.  
  • Email your local MP
  • Email the Premier of your state
  • Email Sally McManus – Secretary, Australian Council of Trade Unions
  1. Email all relevant federal Ministers including Shadow Ministers by copying all of the email addresses into the Bcc window (click on To and you will see the Bcc window).  Once you have emailed, you might also call the Ministers’ officers (see numbers below)

SAMPLE EMAIL 

To

Cc

Bcc: senator.ruston@aph.gov.au
Josh.Frydenberg.MP@aph.gov.au
Alan.Tudge.MP@aph.gov.au;
Jason.Wood.MP@aph.gov.au
David.Coleman.MP@aph.gov.au
Michelle.Landry.MP@aph.gov.au
Luke.Howarth.MP@aph.gov.au
A.Albanese.MP@aph.gov.au
Richard.Marles.MP@aph.gov.au;
Chris.Bowen.MP@aph.gov.au
senator.keneally@aph.gov.au
Linda.Burney.MP@aph.gov.au
Jason.Clare.MP@aph.gov.au;

SUBJECT:   People seeking asylum need income support – just like everyone else.

Dear Minister

Approximately 37,000  people are currently on Bridging Visas awaiting decisions on their application for protection visas.

Many of these people have been supporting themselves in casual insecure work such as hospitality, construction, uber driving etc. and like so many others, many have recently lost this employment.  As well, some people have never been able to secure employment, while some have never had the right to work.   

None of these people currently have access to Centrelink payments.

Like anyone else, people seeking asylum need basic income support so they can pay their rent and feed their families – without access to basic income individuals and families are becoming homeless and destitute.  While charities are doing their best to help, the scale of this situation is beyond their capacity.

Please act decisively to ensure that these people and families have access to income support.  Like us all these people are anxious about the COVID-19 risk, and we need to ensure that they can feel secure about maintaining their housing and capacity to cover essential living expenses. 

No-one should be left without income support at this time – COVID-19 does not discriminate, and nor should we.

Yours sincerely,

Name

Address 

  1. Tweak and send  your email to your local federal MP  Find your local MP here   
  1. Email the Premier in your state and encourage them to use their influence in the national COVID-19 cabinet.  The states have an interest in persuading the federal government to provide income support for refugees and people seeking asylum – state governments should not be expected to fill the gap (though Victoria and Queensland did provide some funds in 2019).  Social security and income support is a federal responsibility.  

SUBJECT:   COVID-19 crisis – People seeking asylum need income support – just like everyone else.

Dear Premier XXXXX

Approximately 37,000  people are currently on Bridging Visas awaiting decisions on their application for protection visas.

Many of these people have been supporting themselves in casual insecure work such as hospitality, construction, uber driving etc. and like so many others, many have recently lost this employment.  As well, some people have never been able to secure employment, while some have never had the right to work.   

None of these people currently have access to Centrelink payments.

Like anyone else, people seeking asylum need basic income support so they can pay their rent and feed their families – without access to basic income individuals and families are becoming homeless and destitute.  While charities are doing their best to help, the scale of this situation is beyond their capacity. Include here any examples if your community group is assisting refugees financially  (respect privacy and do not use names)  

Please act decisively to ensure that these people and families have access to income support.  Like us all these people are anxious about the COVID-19 risk, and we need to ensure that they can feel secure about maintaining their housing and capacity to cover essential living expenses.    

No-one should be left without income support at this time – COVID-19 does not discriminate, and nor should we.

Yours sincerely,

Name

Address 

STATE PREMIERS  
Premier of New South WalesHon. Gladys Berejiklian https://www.nsw.gov.au/contact-us/contact-the-premier/
Premier of VictoriaHon. Daniel Andrews(03) 9651 5000daniel.andrews@parliament.vic.gov.au 
Premier of QueenslandHon. Annastacia Palaszczuk (07) 3719 7000thepremier@premiers.qld.gov.au
Premier of South AustraliaHon. Stephen Marshall(08) 8429 3232premier@sa.gov.au
Premier of TasmaniaHon. Peter Gutwein peter.gutwein@parliament.tas.gov.au
Premier of Western AustraliaHon. Mark McGowan(08) 6552-5000wa-government@dpc.wa.gov.au
Chief Minister of the NTHon. Michael Gunner(08) 8936 5500chief.minister@nt.gov.au
Hon. Andrew BarrChief Minister of the ACT                                             13 22 81barr@act.gov.au 
Government MinistersPhone 
Senator the Hon. Anne Ruston, Minister for Families and Social Services (02) 6277 7560
The Hon Josh Frydenberg, Federal Treasurer(02) 6277 7920
The Hon Alan Tudge, Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure(02) 6277 7200
The Hon Jason Wood, Assistant Minister for Customs, Community Safety and Multicultural Affairs(02) 6277 4982
The Hon David Coleman, Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs(02) 6277 4188
The Hon Michelle Landry, Assistant Minister for Children and Families(02) 6277 4373
The Hon Luke Howarth, Assistant Minister for Community Housing, Homelessness and Community Services(02) 6277 4018
Opposition Shadow Ministers 
Hon Anthony Albanese, Leader of the Opposition(02) 6277 4664
Hon Richard Marles, Deputy Leader of the Opposition(02) 6277 4330
The Hon Chris Bowen, Shadow Treasurer(02) 6277 4822
Senator the Hon Kristina Keneally, Shadow Minister for Home Affairs, Shadow Minister for Immigration and Citizenship(02) 9891 9139
Hon Linda Burney    Shadow Minister for Families and Social Services(02) 6277 4623
Hon Jason Clare    Shadow Minister for Housing and Homelessness(02) 6277 4904

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