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Wednesday, 3 September 2014
Page: 6372

Senator CASH (Western AustraliaAssistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women) (15:40): I seek leave to make a short statement.

The ACTING DEPUTY PRESIDENT ( Senator Bernardi ): Leave is granted for one minute.

Senator CASH: Either Senator Hanson-Young is being disingenuous here or she is, again, yet misinformed. There has been a competitive tender process for the provision of existing services in a new integrated and streamlined service delivery framework. There is no diminution of services. The government has put in place a new team of service providers, including the Australian Red Cross, to ensure that we are getting better value for money. Some IMAs have been allocated to new service providers, which has meant a change to the number of IMAs being supported by the Red Cross. To imply that there will be a negative impact on the welfare and health services available to refugee and asylum seeker families that are living in the community is a slur on the reputation of these service providers.

I do note that this motion was amended overnight to remove reference to granting work rights to BVE holders, as I assume Senator Hanson-Young obviously realised that, had she supported the introduction of temporary protection visas, those IMAs found to be owed protection would already have work rights. The government will not be supporting this motion.