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Migration Agent industry requires dramatic reform


Australia's policy governing the migration agent industry must be dramatically reformed, the independent Catholic based lobbyist Australian Political Ministry Network (PolMin) said recently in response to recently aired refugee visa scams and negligence.

"Migration agents play a critical role in the refugee process," said spokesperson James McGillicuddy. "Asylum seekers depend almost entirely on migration agents making the right application, providing the right information, presenting the right argument in order for their client to achieve refugee status."

"If migration agents do not do the right thing by asylum seekers, then, asylum seekers are severely disadvantaged resulting in long-term detention or deportation.

"What has emerged in recent times is that some migration agents are actively defrauding asylum seekers, charging high fees but not helping asylum seekers. This situation is unjust and it demands immediate attention.

"Migration agents are able to defraud asylum seekers because the policy regulating the migration agent industry is non-existent. The industry is self-regulating, and self-regulation breeds corruption."

Mr McGillicuddy said PolMin would be actively lobbying Federal Parliament to adopt the policy recommendations.

SOURCE
Migration Agent industry requires dramatic reform (PolMin)

LINKS
Australian Political Ministry Network (PolMin)
Senate hears of migration misdeeds (Sydney Morning Herald 23/10/03)
Visa scam claims fell on deaf ears (The Australian 20/10/03)
Migration Agents Registration Authority

28 Oct 2003