On Thursday, the Government announced a review into the “integration, employment and settlement outcomes for refugees and humanitarian entrants”.
The Prime Minister said: “We want to make sure we are doing everything we can to help people get jobs, and integrate into the community”.
Oh what a difference a new job makes.
After the 2010 election defeat, when opposition immigration spokesman, Morrison urged the shadow cabinet to capitalise on the electorate’s growing concerns about “Muslim immigration”, “Muslims in Australia” and the “inability” of Muslim migrants to integrate.
Mr Morrison’s suggestion was made at a meeting at which shadow ministers were asked to bring three ideas for issues on which the Coalition should concentrate its political attack during the next parliamentary term.
In early 2011, after Mr Morrison’s comments on the cost of asylum-seeker funerals and his role in the controversial decision to cut a Howard government program to fund schools in Indonesia, colleagues were privately questioning whether he was trying to pursue an anti-Muslim political strategy unilaterally.
After he handed the baton to P Duddy, things only got worse.
Responding to a Greens idea to boost the refugee intake to 50,000 in the lead-up to the 2016 election, Dutton said “They won’t be numerate or literate in their own language, let alone English.”
“These people would be taking Australian jobs, there’s no question about that.
“For many of them that would be unemployed, they would languish in unemployment queues and on Medicare and the rest of it so there would be huge cost and there’s no sense in sugar-coating that, that’s the scenario.”
Also announced on Thursday was some sort of protection against religious discrimination. ProMo went to great lengths to link this to multiculturalism and mentioned that “someone” had told him that they felt less able to openly practice their religion nowadays. He also stressed how important it was for parents to have the right to determine the values their children are taught at school.
Yet at last year’s Liberal National party state conference in Queensland they voted on a resolution that called for the federal government to ban immigration from countries with sharia law, with those in favour saying it was “culturally incompatible “ with Australian values.
Whilst the resolution was defeated, another calling for a ban on headscarves for children under the age of 10 was passed. Apparently it is ok to tell a Muslim family how they must raise their daughter.
Considering their history regarding stoking up fears about Islam, and the current debate about immigration mixed in with border security, I don’t like the chances of anything positive coming from yet another Coalition government review.
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