Citizenship forum to hear concerns of Greater Dandenong community

Greater Dandenong Labor MPs Mark Dreyfus, Clare O’Neil and Julian Hill have organised a community forum to discuss the Turnbull government’s unfair plan to change the requirements for applying for Australian citizenship.

The Hon Mark Dreyfus QC MP

Shadow Attorney General
Shadow Minister for National Security
Federal Member for Isaacs

Clare O’Neil MP
Shadow Minister for Justice
Federal Member for Hotham


Julian Hill MP

Federal Member for Bruce

 

CITIZENSHIP FORUM TO HEAR CONCERNS OF GREATER DANDENONG COMMUNITY

 

Greater Dandenong Labor MPs Mark Dreyfus, Clare O’Neil and Julian Hill have organised a community forum to discuss the Turnbull government’s unfair plan to change the requirements for applying for Australian citizenship.

These changes include introducing an unfair university-level English language test.

“There is no reason to introduce a university-level English language test. The citizenship test is already in English, and conversational English has served us well for decades. The Government’s plan to require university-standard English is ridiculous snobbery,” Mr Dreyfus said.

“If people can make a positive contribution to our country and they meet the eligibility criteria, they should be welcomed, not discouraged.”

“Turnbull's citizenship changes are poorly thought out and do not pass the fair go test,” Ms O’Neil said.

“First this government closes the Dandenong Department of Immigration Office and now it’s making it far harder for hardworking people to become Australian citizens. There’s a trend here.”

“We don't want hundreds of thousands of Permanent Residents living in our country for years and years as an underclass, blocked from becoming citizens,” Mr Hill said.

“How would this make us a better society or safer nation? We should expect people who plan to settle here and live as Australians to take the pledge of allegiance to Australia sooner rather than later.”

“Many Australians – including those born here, and a number of MPs I’d bet – would not pass the university-level test. The government’s message to all Australians who don’t have university-level qualifications is that if the Liberals had their choice these people would not be here,” Mr Hill said.

The forum will give local residents a chance to share their views and then provide a discussion about what residents can do next. It will feature speeches from community leaders, followed by a Q&A.

The details of this forum are:

What: Forum to discuss the Turnbull government’s plan to change the requirements to apply for Australian citizenship.

When: Tuesday 25 July from 7pm.

Where: Springvale Town Hall, 397 Springvale Road, Springvale

Who: Community leaders and local Labor MPs Mark Dreyfus, Clare O’Neil and Julian Hill will speak. All local residents are welcome to attend.

RSVP: RSVP not required, but please RSVP large groups to Clare O’Neil’s office on 9545 6211.

 

MONDAY, 10 JULY 2017
MEDIA CONTACT: PHILLIP CLARKE (DREYFUS) 0498 490 466
                               JAKE KAHANE (O’NEIL) 0422 723 491
                               CALLUM DRAKE (HILL) 0437 225 586