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Time to give Kiwis in Australia a fair go

Time to give Kiwis in Australia a fair go

Labour leader David Cunliffe today called for Kiwis living in Australia to be given equal treatment and the same respect Australians living in New Zealand receive.

“For all sorts of historical reasons, New Zealanders living in Australia are not treated the same as Australians living in New Zealand,” David Cunliffe today told the Australia New Zealand Leadership Forum in Sydney.

“For example, Australians studying in New Zealand can access our student allowances and loans after two years, while most Kiwis studying in Australia are denied similar payments.

“New Zealanders living in Australia are also forced to pay public disability insurance, but most will get no support if a tragedy occurs. In contrast, Australians living in New Zealand pay into our ACC system and are given that support if the need arises.

“Another fundamental area where the fair go does not go both ways is citizenship. Australian nationals who come to live in New Zealand can eventually become full participants in New Zealand life but many New Zealand nationals in Australia cannot become fully-fledged Australians.

“On top of these barriers, there is a widespread misconception that Kiwi migrants to Australia have limited skills and are more likely to be unemployed.

“However, the reality is very different. New Zealanders moving to Australia tend to be young, skilled and in many cases, are tertiary educated.

“It is the New Zealand Government’s job to advocate for our citizens who live outside our borders.

“I am committed to working with our Australian counterparts to make sure the ANZAC tradition of equality and respect is strengthened and built upon for our mutual benefit,” David Cunliffe said.

ends

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