The power of petitions, calls and stories

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Across the country, people are lending a helping hand to neighbours, friends, family and colleagues on temporary visas, who have been left out of government support through the coronavirus crisis. International students, who came here to learn and give back, are organising and fighting for their futures in Australia.



GetUp members like you have mobilised online in enormous numbers, with over 30,000 people calling for help to be extended to everyone through this crisis.

And while the Morrison Government tries to ignore how they've treated over a million people living and working in this country, GetUp members and the community are refusing to let them.

Thousands of GetUp members contacted Social Services minister Anne Ruston directly to keep the pressure on, while nearly 2000 of you shared your stories and concerns as part of the COVID-19 inquiry. Read a few powerful excerpts below:
 
I've been here for 6 years, I have been working for the same company for 5 years...on top of that I'm 6 months pregnant with a future Australian Baby. As soon as JobKeeper kicked in on the 1st of May, my company left me home because I'm not eligible. It's all very disappointing – GetUp member in NSW

My friends on temporary visas cannot feed their children or pay the rent. Please support them until they can go back to their jobs. They and many others are in a terrible situation.
– GetUp member in SA


My friend has lost all income due to Coronavirus, and has no Medicare or access to social support. She is struggling to access basic goods and services for herself and her daughter. The impact on their lives is profound, and distressing to witness. My friend, and others in situations like hers, should not be discriminated against because of their visa status. They too need and deserve government support through this crisis.
– GetUp member QLD.

People on temporary visas contributed to our powerful campaign video, and people like you around the country helped share it far and wide.

this is home video

Together, standing in solidarity with affected communities campaigning to have their stories heard, we shone a light on how this government's cruel decision is impacting our lives, and those of our loved ones and colleagues – and in response, we've seen every state government release various support to people on temporary visas over the past few months.1,2,3

But there's still more to do – the state government support only scratches the surface, and in some cases funds have yet to be released. The more time passes without adequate support, the further people are pushed beyond their means, with frontline service organisations reporting huge strains on their resources as they try to assist thousands of people accessing their services every day. 4

Meanwhile, as people queue around the block for food, the recent JobKeeper 'reporting error' has shown that the Federal government has $60 billion that they're holding back from supporting people on temporary visas. That's $60 billion the community and the economy need to move out of this crisis.5

It's clear the Government has the means – we just need political will.

We need to dial our pressure up and keep it pointed at the Morrison Government, so that every person living in Australia has the support they need to get themselves and their families through these tough times.

Add your name to our petition calling on the Government to extend support for all!

We can not let the government leave anyone behind. Thank you once again for all that you do.

In determination,

Renaire, Anisha and Naz for the GetUp team.


References
[1] 3,000 temporary visa holders have taken up Tasmania's coronavirus support payment – SBS News, 29 May 2020
[2] NSW Government to fund crisis accommodation for international students through coronavirus pandemic – ABC, 15 May 2020
[3] Victoria latest state to help temporary migrants excluded from federal coronavirus support – The Guardian, 30 April 2020
[4] Organisations fear humanitarian crisis unfolding due to lack of federal support for people seeking asylum – ABC, 31 May 2020
[5] How do you lose $60bn and where does this leave Australia? – The Guardian, 22 May 2020
 
Australian Government Charity & Not For Profit Community Coronavirus COVID-19 Health & Wellness Political Surveys & Your Say
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GetUp! Australia :
PO Box A105, Sydney South, NSW, 1235, Australia Wide
GetUp! Australia
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