Crisis in Afghanistan
The newly appointed adviser to the Australian government on resettling Afghan nationals has recently stated that trauma among refugees is a key concern. Organisations such as STARRTS have seen a greater demand for their services as many of their clients have been significantly retraumatised through all the events of the past three weeks.
We have accepted a pro bono role to investigate the situation of an Iranian artist and poet who has been detained in Australia and Nauru for seven years and is now seeking release under the principle of habeas corpus.
The Department of Home Affairs provides updated information on the developing situation on their website. Please see https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-and-support/afghanistan-update.
E-Visitor (subclass 651) visa applications
The introduction of travel restrictions due to the pandemic had previously made e-Visitor (subclass 651) visa applications unviable.
However, the Department has now published information suggesting that processing for these applications has re-commenced. It is noted that the Department is prioritising applicants who are exempt from the travel restrictions.
Victorian State Nomination
The 2021-22 Victorian State Nomination Program opened for applicants in July. The state has received 4,000 places for this year. Applicants will be required to submit an Expression of Interest in order to be considered.
The state is currently nominating individuals who meet the following criteria:
- Living in Victoria;
- Working in Victoria in STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medical); or
- Working in a target sector.
Target sectors include health, technology and manufacturing. For further information please visit https://liveinmelbourne.vic.gov.au/migrate/skilled-migration-visas/target-sectors.
Parent Visa Processing
The Department of Home Affairs is said to be beginning processing for Parent visas lodged in June 2016 at the end of the year. It is expected that processing for applications lodged in July 2016 will begin within the next 12 months.
The Department has already begun final processing for Contributory Parent visa applications lodged in May 2016 or earlier. Final processing has also begun for Parent visa applications lodged in up to October 2010 and Aged Parent applications lodged in up to December 2012.
In fact, we have seen a significant slowdown in the processing of Contributory Parent visa applications due to a surge of applications lodged in 2016 and a reduced quota of 3,600 visas per year.
Update on Quarantine Arrangements
Prime Minister Morrison has announced that home quarantine may become available instead of hotel quarantine once vaccination rates increase. It is likely that home quarantine will only be offered to the vaccinated. We expect that this would allow greater freedom of movement in and out of Australia.
Please note that the above information is only general information and is not legal advice and should not be relied upon. Please contact our office for immigration advice specific to your situation.
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