4 December 2004


The Howard Government has pulled off a massive deception against the Australian people on the issue of immigration. The Government has focused attention on the issue of unauthorised boat arrivals, which has diverted attention away from immigration in general. It needs to be understood that less than 10 percent of immigrants who come to Australia are refugees, and only a very small proportion of them arrive as asylum-seekers. The Howard Government has increased the rate of immigration massively over the last eight years. Net migration has increased from about 70,000 in 1997 to over 130,000 in 2003 (according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics

Actually 72,400 in 1997 – see:http://www.abs.gov.au/Ausstats/abs@.nsf/Lookup/A0AE303DF8A83B92CA256EA8007A37C8 scroll down to table 1

and 132,400 in 2003 – seehttp://www.abs.gov.au/Ausstats/abs@.nsf/Lookup/6949409DC8B8FB92CA256BC60001B3D1

and the number is likely to be even higher this year. The media has paid very little attention to this.

Even in regard to illegal immigration the Howard Government’s done very little. It’s estimated that there are about 60,000 illegal immigrants in Australia right now, 30,000 of them working. To put that number in perspective, the number of asylum-seekers that have entered Australian waters over the last five years is only about 5,000. The Government has failed to prosecute employers who employ illegal workers. The Labor Party has actually promised to prosecute such employers, and to introduce an identity card for migrant workers in an effort to reduce illegal immigration. Again this is something the media has provided very little coverage of.

This government favours immigration, because it’s what big business wants, and the Howard Government main interest, apart from staying in power, is to serve the interests of big business. Big business favours high immigration because it means cheaper and more exploitable workers, and more profit for property developers. The whole Pacific Solution exercise is just a smokescreen. Unfortunately the Labor Party seems to favour high immigration too.

When people are worried about environmental problems, and the high cost of housing, they should lobby the political parties for lower immigration, because let’s face it, the biggest problem facing the environment is people, and high immigration is certainly a major factor in increasing the cost of housing.

People on low incomes face lower wages and higher housing costs as a result of the increased level of immigration.

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