Australia meets humanitarian immigration targets

The Australian Immigration Minister has revealed that Australia met all of its humanitarian immigration targets for the first time in a number of years last year.

Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs David Coleman said that 16,250 refugee and humanitarian places were delivered in the 2017-18 program year, up from 13,750 the previous year.

“This is a tangible demonstration of the Coalition Government’s commitment to assisting refugees and others in need,” Mr Coleman said.

Of the visas granted, 14,825 were granted under the offshore component of the program which had a focus on resettling vulnerable people from the Middle East, Asia and Africa regions, including Iraq, Syria, Myanmar (Burma), Democratic Republic of Congo, Afghanistan, Eritrea and Ethiopia.

A further 1,425 visas were granted under the onshore component. These were granted to people who arrived in Australia legally and were found to engage Australia’s protection obligations.

More than 7,900 visas were granted under the Refugee category and 6,900 under the Special Humanitarian Program including more than 300 under the new Community Support Program and its predecessor the Community Proposal Pilot.

The Program delivered on all key priorities. These included:

– 1,550 visas for the resettlement of vulnerable women and children was surpassed with more than 2,100 visas granted;

– More than 7,800 visas were granted to Syrians and Iraqis from persecuted minority groups including 1,300 visas to vulnerable Yazidis;

– Supporting more humanitarian entrants to settle in regional areas of Australia by giving priority to Special Humanitarian Program entrants whose proposers reside in these areas;

– More than 9,700 visas granted to refugees from protracted refugee situations.

“Australia has one of the most substantial refugee and humanitarian programs in the world,” Mr Coleman said. “Our per capita refugee and humanitarian intake is matched by very few other nations.”

Article published 16th November 2018