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Centacare calls for extension of Regional Visa scheme to asylum seekers


Dale West, director of Catholic welfare agency Centacare says many refugees on temporary protection visas are skilled workers, and should be offered placements under the Government's new regional migration scheme.

The comment is carried as part of an ABC News report broadcast yesterday where "concerns have been raised by government and community groups that skilled migrants may not stay in regional Australia even if they are given three-year temporary residence visas". The report says:

Catholic welfare agency Centacare says many refugees on temporary protection visas are skilled workers, and should be offered placements under the Government's new regional migration scheme.

Centacare director Dale West says he hopes the Government will consider extending the program to include refugees already working in regional centres.

"What's not known by the general community is that a very large proportion of the people who've come to Australia by boat and who have been given a temporary protection visa would meet this criteria," Mr West said.

"That is, they are people who are skilled, they are people who are under 45 and they are people who would have much to offer Australia and our future."


SOURCE – FULL STORY
ABC News – Rural visa plan questioned



14 Jan 2004