Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, Temporary Visa holders who have lost their income due to business shutdowns and job losses have not been able to access the Federal Government’s support JobKeeper and JobSeeker arrangements.
In recognition of the financial hardship, some temporary visa holders are experiencing while being unable to safely return to their home country, many State Governments across Australia have announced various support schemes. Read on to find out more about support for visa holders.
Support for Temporary Visa holders
- Tens of thousands of Student Visa holders in Victoria can apply for a relief payment of up to $1,100 as part of an emergency support package.
- In WA, international students can access support through StudyPerth.
- In Tasmania, all Temporary Visa holders can apply for relief. Individuals experiencing financial hardship may be eligible for a one-off $250 support payment, while families can apply for $1,000 in assistance.
- In the ACT, cash relief packages are available for international students, asylum seekers and refugees and will be distributed by a committee.
- In Victoria, international students can access assistance through StudyMelbourne.
- The South Australian Government has committed $13.8 million in emergency cash grants for international students living in the state.
- International students in the Northern Territory can also access assistance.
You may wish to contact your relevant State Government for more information and on how to apply.
Push for other states to reciprocate
The Federation of Ethnic Communities Councils of Australia (FECCA) Chief Executive, Mohammed Al-Khafaji, welcomed the decisions and encouraged all other State and Territory Governments to consider similar measures in their jurisdictions. At this stage, financial support is yet to be available for Temporary Visa holders in NSW.
In New South Wales, Domestic Violence NSW is calling for the State Government to provide income, housing and healthcare support for women and children on Temporary Visas who are experiencing domestic and family violence.
Financial support for visa holders may also be available from the Red Cross. You can read about this here. As announced earlier, Government provisions such as early access to superannuation may also be available.
If you have any visa or migration concerns, please do not hesitate to contact our Registered Migration Agents in Perth. We assist people across Australia and internationally and can assess your visa options to stay in Australia if you are unable to leave the country before your current visa is due to expire. Simply contact us at [email protected] or +61 8 9221 3388 (or National Free Call 1800 449 858).