Immigration policy changes – families for the rich

Winston Peters is claiming the credit for a toughening up of the Parental Visa Scheme which makes it possible for only high income earners to sponsor family members immigrating too New Zealand.

Peters must see votes for NZ First as more important than families.

RNZ:  NZ First pushed for tightening of parental visa scheme

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters says the tightening up on who can move to New Zealand is a direct response to his party’s demands during coalition negotiations with Labour.

That sits uncomfortably against the posturing of the Prime Minister and Immigration Minister who this week celebrated the lifting of the moratorium on the parent category visa.

In the last fortnight the government has announced three significant changes to its immigration policy.

The Recognised Seasonal Employer scheme will be boosted by just over 3000 in the next two years, the government has overturned the family link policy that stopped refugees from Africa and the Middle East resettling in New Zealand unless they had family here and it’s reinstated the parent category visa – but with a cap on the number of parents who can come in and a high income test for the child sponsor.

Speaking to RNZ, Mr Peters said the parental category visa changes that switch the financial onus from the parent moving to New Zealand to the child sponsor, and almost doubles the income test is “precisely” what New Zealand First pushed for at the Cabinet table.

“Where in the world can you decide to go and take your parents as well? That’s the reality here,” he said.

Only when a skilled migrant is living in New Zealand, who is critical to the workforce, and is in demand internationally does it make sense to allow them to bring a parent in, Mr Peters said.

“It is a significant tightening up of the parental visa scheme.”

“What we had here was up to 31 percent of the so-called sponsors having left this country to go off to other countries, including Australia, and leaving the cost to the taxpayers.”

The change is going to make it more likely that skilled immigrants will desert the country if they can’t bring in their family members.

For New Zealand First it’s about upholding a nationalist approach, something Mr Peters said always existed until the “neo-liberal experiment unleashed itself on the idea that more immigration meant cheap labour”.

Immigration has been an essential for the growth of New Zealand since long before the so-called “neo-liberal experiment”.

“All these things were meant to be part and parcel of a planned population policy but there was no plan other than to drive up consumption with mass immigration,” he said.

Peters keeps using the term “mass immigration”, which is nonsense but deliberately panders to a small intolerant section of society (and voters). NZ First needs more than them to keep their support levels up – and those who expected him to fulfil his promise to slash overall immigrant numbers (to 10,000, currently about 50,000) may still feel he hasn’t delivered anyway.

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13 Comments

  1. Gezza

     /  11th October 2019

    The change is going to make it more likely that skilled immigrants will desert the country if they can’t bring in their family members.

    Maybe. Maybe not, or maybe not in any such numbers that it will make a difference. When you think about, this country was settled by people who expected to be leaving their family in their old homeland behind for good.

    We want skilled immigrants, they want to immigrate to a country where they expect to find a better environment or a better life.

    If I was considering immigrating to any other country than Trump’s Amerika, I would be expecting that that would mean leaving parents & other famiily behind, & that would be a factor to be carefully weighed in making the decision whether to go.

    I think it’s even a bit riich for immigrants to settle her & then expect & demand that other family members must be allowed to follow them.

    To any who say, if my olds can’t come, I’m leaving, I’m actually quite happy for us to say

    “👞 Sayonara. 👋🏽 Next ! 👔👗 👍🏼

    Reply
    • Agreed. There’s also cases where mum and dad come to live in NZ and are unable to be supported by family who sponsored them to come. So off they go to WINZ. This was why the category was dropped in the first place.

      There’s no shortage of elderly immigrants around these parts in Auckland. Fine if they can afford to live here. A bit rich if they can’t. Even worse are the cases where mum and dad are settled in NZ and the kids move off to Oz.

      Reply
    • Duker

       /  11th October 2019

      The migrants were already leaving the country – but after they bought their parents here.
      “What we had here was up to 31 percent of the so-called sponsors having left this country to go off to other countries, including Australia, and leaving the cost to the taxpayers.”

      This is why National a few years back stopped this parent reunion category because the taxpayers were being rorted. This is what happened with some near neighbours of mine.
      Another migrant I worked with over 10 years ago , when driving past a retirement village was under the impression it was provided by the government for retirees and that if his parents came here they would qualify because of their zero income.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  11th October 2019

        Foreigners, Dukers. Strange folk, foreigners. Sometimes need a bit of watching. 🕵

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  11th October 2019

          I think that the oldies can’t automatically go on NZ Super until they have been here for a number of years.

          Some countries have reciprocal pensions schemes that can be transferred to the new country. WP has failed to mention these, of course.

          Reply
          • Duker

             /  11th October 2019

            While they are waiting for the qualification time for NZ super to tick over, they can get the unemployment benefit, housing benefit etc

            Reply
          • Was ten years residence until you got super. Changed to twelve but was relevant if you got citizenship because you get all the perks then. including Winston’s Gold Card. If you ran into problems before hand you just went to Winz for a hardship grant.

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  11th October 2019

              That’s correct. Technically you didn’t qualify for any main benefits.
              But actually you did. Under the “in Hardship” category.

  2. Duker

     /  11th October 2019

    Some corrections to your numbers PG, they arent ‘around 50,000’

    “New Zealand experienced a net gain of 72,300 permanent and long-term migrants in 2016/17, which was 4.7% more than in 2015/16. This was the fifth consecutive year in which migration increased and the highest net gain ever recorded.
    The details are
    75,578 student visa holders were present in New Zealand on 30 June 2017.(stable)
    At 152,432, the number of temporary workers present in New Zealand on 30 June 2017 was 16% higher than the year before
    https://www.mbie.govt.nz/immigration-and-tourism/immigration/migration-research-and-evaluation/migration-trends-report/
    The ‘50,000’ number comes from not using 30 June numbers but ‘january 2019’ , which as its at start of year, student and work numbers are in flux
    And as usual with governments when they want to obscure some numbers , the redefine the categories

    Reply
  3. NOEL

     /  11th October 2019

    “A single person wanting to sponsor one parent they will need to be earning twice the median income which is $104,000 a year.”
    The parent wouldn’t need to demonstrate their own ability to support themselves, as required previously.
    “What’s important is the adult migrant who is sponsoring them is able to demonstrate that they have the resources to sponsor their parent.”

    And somehow because the income threshold is elevated “31 percent of the so-called sponsors having left this country to go off to other countries, including Australia, and leaving the cost to the taxpayers” will no longer be an issue.

    Sounds like a Tui advert.

    Reply
  4. Blazer

     /  15th October 2019

    ‘Granny dumping’ perfected by a lot of immigrants with Chinese sounding surnames I venture.

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  15th October 2019

      A lot of free child-minders is the incentive for many, from the sub continent & Europe.

      Reply

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