Migrants have had a significant part in shaping Australia into the diverse multicultural country it is today. They bring their unique skills and cultural beliefs. But they still struggle to receive legal recognition and disadvantage.
Before anyone can come into Australia, they must apply for a visa. The process a migration application undertakes is extremely tough, and allows a very small amount of people over the border (around 2-3% of migration places). Some features assessed include age, licensed skills, English proficiency, willing to live anywhere, satisfy other citizenship tests etc.
Once in Australia, migrants find it difficult to obtain jobs due to a number of reasons. For one, they rely on contacts in industries for work. Their qualifications are often not recognized my Australian employers. Many migrants are working in job that doesn’t use their highest qualification. Adding to that, language barriers make it difficult to communicate with employers and colleagues.
Unemployment among migrants is high especially Family Stream and Humanitarian Stream migrants. And they have no access to unemployment benefits, sickness and student allowances for the first two years after they gain permanent residency or arrive in Australia. A ten year wait applies on aged pensions and disability allowances.
Unemployment and lower paying jobs greatly affects migrants’ standard of living. They find it difficult to find affordable accommodation and usually house many relatives in the same home. They find it hard to afford basic needs and become reliant on charities to survive.
Migrants can seek rental accommodation (which can be difficult as they cannot prove they are good tenants or have stable income), and if they succeed they can receive rental assistance from the government.
Racial discrimination, vilification and harassment are all serious problems faced by migrants. Many laws and acts have been introduced to prevent racially discriminatory conduct. The...