"Oz Kiwi" push for equal rights for Kiwis living in Australia

By Kimiora Kaire-Melbourne

Non-profit organisation “Oz Kiwi” will be holding a meeting, calling for Kiwis living in Australia to be given the same rights as other permanent residents.

The meeting is being held today in Canberra from 6:30pm and federal politicians as well as New Zealand politicians, Labour leader Andrew Little and Phil Goff are expected to attend.

New Zealanders are able to enter Australia on a Special Category Visa. Although this entitles Kiwis to live, work and buy property in Australia, it does not enable them to gain citizenship or access to government services despite paying taxes.

New Zealanders are no eligible for National Disability Insurance Schemes, student loans, unemployment benefits and disability benefits.

In comparison, Australians who move to New Zealand are able to vote after one year, receive hardship and sickness benefits after two years and apply for citizenship after five years.

Oz Kiwi Chair Tim Gassin said, “We're committed to working with politicians from both nations to find a reasonable solution.  It is only through working together that we can expect to see a return to equitable treatment of trans-Tasman migrants.”