Opinion poll supports free movement between Commonwealth countries

Whilst we know that major parties across Australia and New Zealand believe trans-Tasman free movement is beneficial to both nations, there has been little attempt over the years to gauge public support for it.

Earlier this year, the Royal Commonwealth Society commissioned some relevant polling on public opinion about free movement between Commonwealth nations.

Participants were asked whether they supported the establishment of free movement arrangements between Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the UK – a proposal that has been promoted by groups including the Commonwealth Exchange and the Commonwealth Freedom of Movement Organisationas well the new British Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson.

In each country, substantial majorities of those polled supported the proposal.

Although the poll’s question did not specifically address the Trans-Tasman Travel Arrangement, it is reasonable to infer from these results that long-standing Australia-NZ freedom of movement arrangements enjoy widespread popular support in both nations.

We must harness this support in our attempts to win a fairer deal for trans-Tasman migrants.

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