Extend the Job Keeper Allowance to Visa Holders during this Covid-19 Crisis

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This petition is asking for the Government to extend the recently announced Job Keeper Allowance to ALL workers on Visas here in Australia, not just Australian and New Zealand Citizens and Residents.

Unfortunately, the Government’s $130 billion JobKeeper payment package does not apply to people on temporary visas, such as bridging visas, temporary partner visas and skilled working visas, who face either losing their income, or have already lost their income, as a result of measures put in place to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

This package should also provide some certainty to temporary visa holders working in this country, regardless of their visa status.

These people are in the same situation as their co-workers in Australian workplaces and this package should provide support to them too. I think most Australians would agree that for these people who have worked here for many years to be left destitute without any other safety net is completely unfair.

My story: My partner is currently on a temporary 820 Partner Visa, and will not be eligible to apply for his 801 Permanent Partner Visa until the end of this year. He has been in Australia since 2017, paying his taxes and setting up his life here in Australia. His life is here now, with me, and we are expecting our first child in June. He does not have the option to simply leave Australia in this crisis.

Like many others, our family is facing extreme difficulties with Covid 19. But unlike many other families, we cannot access the support that other people are able to during these times. I am about to commence unpaid maternity leave, and his full time permanent job will likely be stood down soon without him meeting the eligibility for the Job Keeper Allowance. He is also not entitled to access any other type of government support.

How am I supposed to support myself, him and a newborn baby, in these very challenging circumstances?

The Government has extended this payment to NZ citizens - please also consider people in the process of becoming residents/citizens, like my partner on an 820 Visa.

Please also consider all the other people on other types of temporary, work and student visa’s, who are also paying their taxes and setting up their lives here in Australia. It is Un-Australian to leave these people with no way to access emergency funds during this crisis, and to not offer the same support (ie the Job Keeper Allowance). These people also have families in Australia. They have rent to pay, mouths to feed and bills to pay. We cannot simply disregard these people, and expect that they can all just “pack up and go back to their own countries” during this crisis.

Without meeting the eligibility for this Job Keeper Allowance, my partner will watch his colleagues who are Australian/NZ Citizens and Residents retain their roles, while he will likely be stood down from his permanent position. He cannot then go and get the Job Seeker Allowance, as again, he is not eligible. And in this environment, it’s very unlikely he will be able to simply go out and find another job. So he is left with no income, a newborn baby on the way in 3 months and a family to support. There are SO many other people in similar circumstances right now, and we need your help!

Please sign this petition, and share widely, because people like myself need your support right now.