Federation of Nepalese Community Associations of Australia (FeNCAA) has appealed to the Australian federal government to include international students and the holders of temporary residence visa, parental visa and visitor visa in the Medicare and Social Security System during the COVID-19 crisis period.
FeNCAA has made a written submission to Hon. Greg Hunt MP, Minister for Health and Senator Anne Ruston, Minister for Families and Social Services, Federal Government.
In its submission, FeNCAA has congratulated the efforts of the government in terms of minimising the health, social and economic impact. It further highlights the important contribution made by international students and their vulnerability during such periods – therefore, making a request to include students and other temporary visa holders in the state’s social security system.
The Nepalese community in Australia is one of the fastest growing migrant communities of Australia – thousands arrive on its shores to pursue further studies, and many eventually settle down in Australia making it their permanent home.
For thousands of international students, while they are able to pay their tuition fees with economic support from home, they are dependent upon their part time/casual jobs for their other expenses which includes rent, bills, public transport and food – the loss of their jobs, and the economic impact of the COVID-19 has hit international students hard. The government’s inclusion of students and other temporary visa holders would ease the pressure on students and visa holders.
Federation of Nepalese Community Associations of Australia (FeNCAA), formally established in 2017, is registered under the Associations Incorporation Act 1991. FeNCAA is an umbrella association of several Nepali community organisations in Australia, and aims to become a unified voice for thousands of Nepalese in Australia across all tiers.