Multicultural Australia welcomes the Government’s announcement allowing thousands of refugees to apply for permanent residency.

Home Affairs Minister, Clare O’Neill, announced 12 February 2023, that over 19,000 individuals on a temporary protection visa (TPV) or safe haven enterprise visa (SHEV) will be eligible to apply for permanent visas from 14 February, with majority able to apply from late March 2023.

Multicultural Australia CEO, Christine Castley, says the announcement will allow affected individuals and families to make substantial strides in their settlement journey.

“This announcement brings hope to the individuals and families impacted by TPVs and SHEVs – many who have lived in uncertainty for years but have waited patiently and made a contribution to our society,” Ms Castley said.

“Affected individuals will be able to make their connections to Australia permanent and engage in family reunion pathways – a significant step in finding a sense of belonging.”

Under the new rules, eligible applicants would need to have arrived in Australia before the start of the border protection operation launched in 2013, or who hold or have applied for a TPV or SHEV before 14 February 2023.

Once granted a permanent visa, individuals will have access to Services Australia, the Higher Education Loan Program and Commonwealth Supported Places, sponsor family through the Migration Program, and the National Disability Insurance Scheme; and will be eligible to apply for Australian citizenship.

‘We are committed to working with community leaders and members to provide direct support and connect to key services” Ms Castley said.