While the global humanitarian crisis has continued to grow, with over 25 million refugees worldwide, the Liberals have failed to improve Australia’s humanitarian response on the international stage.
In response to this humanitarian crisis, a Shorten Labor Government will provide $500 million to the work of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees to deliver stronger asylum seeker assessment and resettlement processes across the region.
Labor will also reform the community support program to develop a Community Sponsored Refugee Program to, over time, allow up to 5,000 refugees to resettle in Australia annually. Groups such as state and local governments, community organisations, businesses, unions, and faith-based organisations will be able to sponsor humanitarian entrants into Australia. This program does not have a budget impact.
Appoint a Special Envoy for Refugee and Asylum Seeker Issues to advance Australia’s interests and leadership on refugee issues within the region, secure third country resettlement agreements, develop an Australian Refugee Commission, and provide policy advice for Australia’s Humanitarian Program. This comprehensive suite of measures is underpinned by a commitment to maintain Australia’s strong borders – to ensure people smugglers are never able to exploit vulnerable people ever again.
Labor is getting the balance right – we will maintain strong borders, keep the people smugglers out of business, and do our part to address the global humanitarian crisis.
We will pay for these initiatives by making multinationals pay their fair share and closing tax loopholes used by the top end of town.