Council Advocates for Asylum Seekers Following Planned Financial Cuts
01 May 2018
The City of Greater Dandenong is advocating against planned cuts to financial support for asylum seekers.
Last year the Australian Government reduced the number of people eligible for support through its Status Resolution Support Service – a program which provides a basic living allowance, casework support and access to counselling.
The program is delivered by not-for-profit agencies across Australia and is also used to support other vulnerable migrants.
Greater Dandenong Mayor Councillor Youhorn Chea said further changes, due to come into effect from 4 June 2018, would see any asylum seekers accessed as being job ready immediately removed from the program and their financial support stopped.
He said the City of Greater Dandenong was calling on the Australian Government to urgently reverse its decision.
“The City of Greater Dandenong is very concerned for the welfare of asylum seekers if these changes come into effect,” he said.
“People seeking asylum are already seeking emergency assistance in increasing numbers and these cuts will only add to that.
“This will put increasing pressure on charities who are already struggling to keep up with demand, not to mention the negative mental health and wellbeing impacts these cuts will have on asylum seekers themselves.”
The City of Greater Dandenong currently has almost 2000 people seeking asylum in the local community and it is anticipated these changes will affect the vast majority of them.