Senator Ann Urquhart accepting the Oz Kiwi petition from an Oz Kiwi representative
23 June 2015
In June 2015 Oz Kiwi took a petition to Canberra calling for a fair pathway to citizenship for New Zealanders living in Australia. The petition was signed by over 18,000 people,
Australian Labor Senator Ann Urquhart (TAS) presented the petition to the Senate in Parliament on our behalf. The petition helped lay the groundwork for discussion and certainly got attention in the corridors of power.
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Here is an extract from the Senate Hansard of Parliamentary business.
Wednesday, 24 June 2015
To the Honourable President and members of the Senate in Parliament assembled:
The petition of the undersigned seeks a fair pathway to citizenship for New Zealanders living in Australia.
Since 2001 a number of laws, regulations, and policies have been introduced that have the effect of denying New Zealanders who settle in Australia under the Trans-Tasman Travel Arrangement many of the basic rights enjoyed by all other permanent residents. As a result of these changes, these people are ineligible for Australian citizenship (and thus cannot gain voting rights and public sector and defence employment) and are denied access to student loans, disability services, basic social welfare provisions, and a variety of other Commonwealth and state government services.
Your petitioners request that the Senate:
Call for the Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia to pass legislation that would end these permanent and arbitrary restrictions. We request all current absolute restrictions be removed and replaced by a system under which rights and access to services are granted after reasonable waiting periods. Most importantly, we request that all New Zealanders of good character who have made Australia their home be given the option of naturalisation on the same grounds as other permanent residents, allowing them to fully participate in Australian society and play their part in the democratic process.
by Senator Urquhart (from 18,052 citizens).
Download a PDF of the Hansard fragment Oz Kiwi Petition – Hansard June 2015