MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT REFUGEES AND ASYLUM SEEKERS PART TWO

Myth #4 – Australia is taking in too many refugees. 

This one is a matter of opinion, but in relation to the rest of the world Australia is home to very very few refugees. Currently, Australia has 1.1 refugees for every 1000 citizens. Of industrialised nations, in 2010 Australia received just 2.2% percent of the world’s asylum applications. To put it in perspective, in 2010, Australia received 6879 refugees by boat – Only enough people to fill 6.8% of the seats in the MCG.

Myth #5 – Refugees receive higher allowances from the Australian government than aged pensioners. 

This is truly one of Today Tonight’s favourites. Refugees do not receive any sort of payment from Centrelink or the Australian Government for simply being a refugee. Once granted refugee status, they are able to apply for financial assistance in the same way and for the same amount as any other Australian, but there is no pension or allowance for simply being a refugee. A single mother who is a refugee and a single mother who is not will both receive the same pension of $611.90 a fortnight – still less than a single aged pensioner receives.

It’s time to rethink refugees, and if someone says something ignorant, uneducated or unkind – don’t be afraid to rock the boat.

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