Federal

Apr 28, 2017

Think the 457 changes are just cosmetic? They killed any hope for my new life

The changes to Australia's 457 visa system have very real, life-altering consequences, writes freelance journalist John Power

Much of the reaction to the government’s scrapping of the 457 visa program has been premised on the idea that, welcome or not, the move is largely political and practically inconsequential. Responding to Malcolm Turnbull’s insistence last week that “Australian workers must have priority for Australian jobs,” Bill Shorten described the surprise move as a “con job” not a “crackdown". After all, he said, foreign nurses and mechanics would continue to be able to come here to take local jobs.

The commentariat, by and large, has bought into this line: that is, whatever their merits, the changes will have little practical effect, apart from serving as a red meat offering by Turnbull to the increasingly alienated conservative base of his party. Accordingly, media reports have described the changes as “an illusion act,” “merely symbolic” and “meaningless".

Free Trial

You've hit members-only content.

Sign up for a FREE 21-day trial to keep reading and get the best of Crikey straight to your inbox

By starting a free trial, you agree to accept Crikey’s terms and conditions

6 comments

Join the conversation

The Crikey comment section is members-only content. Please login or sign up for a FREE trial to engage in the commentary.

Share this article with a friend

Just fill out the fields below and we'll send your friend a link to this article along with a message from you.

Your details

Your friend's details

Sending...