HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 9 NOVEMBER 2020
For two years, Dipy Malik and her husband saved up to pay the $10,000 fee for a sponsored parent visa.
It was granted on 25 January 2020, the day before Australia Day and Indian Republic Day.
Ms Malik’s father, Shyam Lal Khatri, is 84 years old. The visa allowed him to stay in Australia for five years.
As a result of the COVID-19 travel ban, Mr Khatri has been unable to travel to Australia.
Yet the government won’t refund the fee, and won’t extend the visa.
Labor recognises why the government has put the travel ban in place. Unlike the Morrison Government’s attacks on interstate travel bans put in place by premiers, we haven’t criticised the government’s international travel ban.
But it’s not fair that thousands of people have paid for parent visas that can’t be used.
If a business had promised to provide a service to customers, and couldn’t deliver, then the ACCC would expect them to offer a refund or a deferral.
The Morrison Government should hold itself to the same ethical standards that it expects of the private sector.
There’s a solution that’s simple and fair.
If someone on a sponsored parent visa cannot enter Australia due to the travel ban, their visa should be extended by the duration of travel ban.
Authorised by Paul Erickson, ALP, Canberra.