How COVID-19 affects over two million temporary visa holders

by Kaylia Payne

Amiculus exists to assist those who are systemically most vulnerable. 

SBS Radio recently explored the limitations of the federal government’s COVID-19 support schemes, which cannot be accessed by over two million temporary visa holders in Australia, including almost 97,000 people on bridging visas. Services who work with refugees and people seeking asylum are urging the government to provide financial and support services to those on temporary visas.

Many temporary visa holders are currently relying on charity donations to survive; however many are struggling under the increased demand for services. Even with the assistance of charities, 76% of temporary visa holders cannot afford to pay their rent or mortgage, 62% have gone without meals, and 79% have had to borrow money to survive.

Paul Power, CEO of the Refugee Council of Australia, told SBS that calls for assistance to almost 200 support agencies have doubled—in some cases, even tripled. These support services, such as Amiculus, are vital for caring for those in need, working tirelessly toward a society in which no member of the community goes hungry.

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Why we need your help

Organisations fear humanitarian crisis unfolding due to lack of federal support for people seeking asylum

ABC News article by Rachel Clayton and James Hancock

ABC News reported on an important story today; highlighting the plight of thousands of people living in Australia who have no access to government COVID-19 assistance.

Since losing her job, Mrs Dahl has lost her autonomy and relies on handouts from local organisations to feed her family and pay rent.

"I have bills and I have two young children and I have to feed them and it's really hard to ask for help all the time," she said.

"My anxiety and depression is coming back again because of everything."

She doesn't understand why the Federal Government's JobKeeper and JobSeeker schemes cannot be extended to refugees and people seeking asylum.

Charities like ours have been inundated with similar stories of hardship around Australia. That's why we want your help to support vulnerable communities within the Sydney Region, so that they can manage through this particularly tough time.

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