Nervous Wait for Citizenship Changes

By August 16, 2017 News & Info

Thousands in Citizenship queue

The Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) have over 81,000 citizenship applications awaiting processing as proposed changes are discussed in parliament. The new law, ‘The Australian Citizenship Legislation Amendment (Strengthening the Requirements for Australian Citizenship and Other Measures) Bill 2017’ was introduced in the lower house of the parliament on June 15.

DIBP have stalled citizenship processing whilst the parliament gets to work on the complexities of the Bill, creating a huge backlog of applications. DIBP are informing applicants that any new changes will effect their application if it was received after 20th of April.

What are the proposed changes?

‘The Australian Citizenship Legislation Amendment (Strengthening the Requirements for Australian Citizenship and Other Measures) Bill 2017’ proposes a broad range of measures, including:

4-Years as Permanent Resident

New general residence requirement

English Language Test

Possibly up to IELTS 6 (likely lower)

Australian Values Statement

Knowledge and agreement on national values

Pledge Commitment

Integration into the Australian community

What Now?

Wait and see.

The opposition are vehemently opposed to any citizenship changes (especially the more drastic proposals), so there is sure to be a lot of push back from their side of the aisle. DIBP are currently processing 90 per cent of citizenship applications in around 13 months. With recent trends and projections, this time frame is likely to keep growing due to the current parliamentary debate.

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