Australian Politicians and the 457 Visa Debate

It’s politics week here on bobinoz, yay!

No, no, don’t go, it’s not going to be as bad as all that, honest! Besides, there are a couple of things here that could affect you if you’re thinking of moving to Australia on a 457 or if you’re thinking of coming here on any visa and you’re going to be bringing your kids.

Well, it would be a bit harsh to leave them behind, wouldn’t it?

A week in politics

They say a week in politics is a very long time and I think we have a very long week ahead of us. It’s the last week before Parliament breaks up for winter, and apparently they’re going to be quite busy. There are quite a few “bills” that need sorting.

These are some of the bills that the current government, led by Julia Gillard, want to get passed in time for the federal election on September 14.

The bills:

  • Schools funding reforms;
  • The local government referendum;
  • Superannuation changes;
  • New checks on sports doping;
  • Protection of Australian jobs on major projects;
  • Aged-care reforms;
  • Fair Work Act amendments:
  • Whistleblower protections.

My thanks to SBS for that little roundup.

Just to make it more interesting, they need to work through all of these bills whilst wondering whether former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is going to, once again, challenge Julia Gillard for the leadership of the Labour Party.

It was exactly 3 years ago today that Kevin Rudd was ousted by Julia Gillard, who is now so low in the popularity polls that many of her ministers are not just preparing to leave for the winter break, they’re taking everything with them because they’re pretty sure they won’t need to come back for much longer.

So, some people believe that the only chance Labour might have of winning this next election is if they bring back Kevin Rudd. Remember Kevin?

kevin ruddYes, bring back Kevin and put him in charge. Wouldn’t that be sweet revenge for him?

Kevin has already challenged the Prime Ministers position before, that was in February last year, but he failed to get enough support. Will he try again?

Who knew politics could be this much fun?

Anyway, before you all nod off or disappear, I’d better quickly get on with those issues that may well affect you. It’s these two:

  • The Gonski Review (school funding reforms);
  • The crackdown on the rorting of the 457 visa.

I’ll look more closely at the Gonski Review on Wednesday, but today I want to talk about the proposed bill to crack down on the rorting of the 457 temporary skilled worker visa program.

Rorting

If you are not Australian and you haven’t read my post about Giving a Bloke A Fair Go, then you probably don’t know what rort, or rorting is. I know I had never heard of the word until I moved to Australia.

The word has several meanings, but in this instance it translates best as “defrauding’.

The 457 visa debate

So, what’s this debate all about? Julia Gillard…

julia gillard… believes that many jobs are going to foreign skilled workers under the 457 visa that could actually be filled by Australians. She believes that some employers are rorting the system by employing foreigners under 457 visas without genuinely trying to find an Australian to do the job.

Blinkin’ foreigners, come over here, taking our jobs.” – That’s not a quote by anybody in particular, it’s just me reminiscing on things people used to say when I lived in the UK.

What is really funny about Julia Gillard’s stance is that her communications director, John McTernan, is here on a 457 visa. What, no Australians good enough at communications?

Well I never.

Christopher Pyne, the Shadow Minister for Education, Apprenticeships and Training said “The government is trying to create a xenophobic campaign that is most unpleasant.

The leader of the opposition, Tony Abbott…

tony abbott… has accused Julia Gillard of “false patriotism” and of using country of birth to score political points.

The report at smh.com.au went on to say “Mr Abbott said he never thought he would see the day when it was not just an independent member of parliament but the Prime Minister setting out to deliberately divide Australian from Australian to serve a political purpose.

The Independent Australia believes the crackdown on 457 visas is misguided. It’s worth reading the article and also the comments, which mostly seem to disagree.

It has been suggested elsewhere that any changes that Julia Gillard’s government might be able to push through now will be reversed by Tony Abbott if his party were to win the next election.

There, some of you might only be planning your move here at the moment, but already you know who you want to win the next Australian election.

Seriously though, the outcome of 457 visa debate may well affect you if you are looking at this kind of visa. Do remember that migration policy does change every year on 1 July, and can change at any other time as well.

If you want to know more about this, visit the links I’ve included here and also search Google; big G knows everything.

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{ 12 comments… add one }
  • Leanne July 1, 2013, 11:32 pm | Link

    3 year waiting list? I’ve not heard of that before… What is your occupation??

    • edee July 2, 2013, 12:51 pm | Link

      I applied for GSM, sponsored by family member, Degree holder, 18 years of experience as a sales representative (industrial). I applied directly to DIAC.

  • edee July 1, 2013, 11:00 am | Link

    Hi, Bob, I applied in September 2009 for 475 subclass and was told that it is a 3 year wait. All this time been waiting no answer. I would listen to your advice and action appropriately.

  • Chris Mitchell June 28, 2013, 5:15 pm | Link

    Phew! My 457 came through yesterday, glad I didn’t read this before then!

  • Thomas June 27, 2013, 9:39 pm | Link

    “or if you’re thinking of coming here on any visa and you’re going to be bringing your kids”

    Hi Bob.

    My wife got her papers approved and can now apply as a physiotherapist on a 457. She´s planning to bring me and our daugther. Would it be a problem now bringing our daughter or me for that matter and do you have any knowledge about the job situation for physiotherapist. We going to send the first applications next week.

    Great website.

    Thomas

    • BobinOz June 28, 2013, 10:44 pm | Link

      I can’t help you with the current situation on job vacancies for physiotherapists, but you may find the links to Australian employment agencies on my page Getting a Job or a Sponsorship useful in researching what is about.

      As her husband (spouse) you will qualify automatically if she does, and so will your daughter. So no worries there.

      Good luck!

      Bob

  • Leanne June 26, 2013, 7:15 pm | Link

    Fingers crossed! I better learn how to spell Australia first!!! Looking at my previous spelling! :-/. Haha

  • Leanne June 26, 2013, 5:17 am | Link

    I’ve heard a few this with regards to he crack down on 457 visas! It’s a worry for me! I am in the process of a PR 189 visa but hoping o get to australa sooner on a 457 with a job as a nurse, although I’m not that hopeful! 🙁

    • BobinOz June 26, 2013, 4:38 pm | Link

      I think the situation will become clearer next month, but I’m pretty sure that as a nurse you would have a better than average chance of getting a 457. Nurses aren’t the hot skill they were two or three years ago here, but it’s still is an in demand skill, so hopefully you can find a sponsor.

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