Minister for Immigration, The Honourable Tony Burke: Please Grant Jean permanent residency to stay in Australia with her family
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In 2002 my Mother, Jean Goldblatt, applied for permanent residency to join her children to live in Australia. She has been living in Perth for 11 years.
In 2002 Jean passed a medical examination and the Department of Immigration said she would be called for another medical exam to process her application within 4-6 years. It took 9 years to get the call.
Tragically, Jean was diagnosed with dementia in 2009 while waiting, and has been refused permanent residency on medical grounds. She now lives in an aged care facility and according to migration legislation she is 'a burden on the Australian community'.
Jean has 3 children and 6 grandchildren, of school age, living very close to her in Perth. She is an integral part of our family.
I am an Australian citizen and I’ve been living and working in Perth for 19 years.
It is unbearable for me to consider that Jean may be deported back to South Africa, our country of origin. We chose to make a life in Australia and after my father’s passing we encouraged Jean to join us and make a life for herself with her only 3 children and 6 grandchildren here in Perth.
I cannot leave my husband and children in Australia to go care for my mother and she has no relatives to care for her in South Africa. It is not a safe place for a vulnerable elderly woman and I would constantly fear for her life if this were to occur. I am not even sure that South Africa would accept her back into the country.
Jean brought her life savings to Australia, integrated into the community and has contributed to the economy for 11 years and she is still financially independent.
My mother and I are very close. If she is forced to return to South Africa it would place me in the terrible position of having to choose how much time I can spend with my husband and children here in Australia and how much time in South Africa to make sure that her needs are taken care of. Apart from the substantial emotional burden this would place on my own family, it would also create an additional financial burden as I am employed and contribute to the household.
Under the Migration Act the Minister personally is able to intervene if he regards it to be in the “public interest”. He is able to exercise his powers once a Migration Review Tribunal comes to the same decision as the Department of Immigration and Citizenship. That decision, in turn, is based on an opinion by a Medical Officer of the Commonwealth as to whether or not she passes a particular provision of the Migration Regulations concerning her health.
To be deprived of the ability to assist in the care of my mother in a vulnerable stage of her life would cause me irreparable harm and continuing hardship. Furthermore, if my mother is forced to return in the condition in which she now is I believe that would cause her irreparable harm and continuing hardship to be apart from her only children and grandchildren here in Perth.
Please help me to encourage the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, the Honourable Tony Burke, to show compassion, overturn the decision and grant Jean permanent residence in Australia so she can remain with her family that love her.
(If you add a comment please specify whether you are an Australian citizen - this will help to strengthen the plea)
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