More than $6 million will be provided by the NSW Government to multicultural communities affected by COVID-19, including migrants and temporary visa holders. This is in addition to the commitment of $20 million for temporary crisis accommodation for international students that the NSW Government announced in May.
‘Since the beginning of this crisis we have been saying that there is a hole in our safety net, and vulnerable newcomers are falling through the gaps,” said Sydney Alliance organiser Chantelle Ogilvie-Ellis.
‘Where Canberra has abandoned international students, people seeking asylum and others, NSW has stepped in. We thank the Berejiklian Government for acknowledging its responsibility and duty of care to vulnerable migrants in our state who live, work and study amongst us.”
Since March, Churches Housing has been working with Sydney Alliance and its member organisations to call on government, to provide immediate assistance to temporary visa holders in crisis. In April, the alliance contacted NSW members of parliament with the first-hand stories of people in crisis who had been left behind during COVID due to their visa status.
Stories that Sydney Alliance has passed on to Members of Parliament include (amongst many) …
- Leaders from refugee and migrant communities receiving texts from families running out of food and facing eviction
- Migrant workers who have been self-reliant, working and paying tax in Australia for five years or more suddenly unemployed with no support
- Specialist community services and diaspora leaders seeing a dramatic increase in people seeking asylum and international students facing homelessness, risk of suicide and despair
For information, contact Chantelle Ogilvie-Ellis 0412 876 630 or David Barrow 0416028001