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Personal lodgement of passport applications



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MINISTER FOR

FOREIGN AFFAIRS

M96

Da,e | Ob

29 June 1984

PERSONAL LODGEMENT OF PASSPORT APPLICATIONS

The M i n i s t e r f o r Foreig n Affairs.»· Mr B i l l Hayden# MP# s ai d

tod ay t h a t as from 1 J u l y a p p l i c a n t s f o r A u s t r a l i a n p a s s p o r t s would be

r e q u i r e d t o lodge t h e i r a p p l i c a t i o n s p e r s o n a l t y at a Pa s s p o r ts O f f i c e

or an O f f i c i a l A u s t r a l i a Post O f f i c e .

Mr Hayden s ai d t h i s re qu ir e m e n t was th e l a s t i n a s e r i e s o f

measures i n t r o d u c e d p r o g r e s s i v e l y i n response to recommendations from

the St ew art Royal Commission of I n q u i r y i n t o Drug T r a f f i c k i n g # which

accepted the need f o r p e r s o n a l i n t e r v i e w s as the most e f f e c t i v e method

o f e s t a b l i s h i n g i d e n t i t y . T h i s was an e s s e n t i a l p a r t of m a i n t a i n i n g

the s e c u r i t y and i n t e g r i t y of the p a s s p o r t i s s u i n g system.

To help make sure t h a t people are aware o f t h e r e q u i r e m e n t

f o r p e r s o n a l atten da nce i t i s being p u b l i c i s e d t h r o u g h o u t A u s t r a l i a

by a d v e r t i s e m e n t s in major A u s t r a l i a n newspapers# and by announcements on r a d i o and t e l e v i s i o n . As w e l l A u s t r a l i a Post i s d e l i v e r i n g a

br och ure e x p l a i n i n g the new pr oce dur es t o a l l h ou s eh ol de rs i n A u s t r a l i a .

Mr Hayden s ai d he was con s c io us t h a t some a p p l i c a n t s would

be s e v e r e l y inco nv en ie nc ed by the r e q u ir e m e n t f o r p e r s o n a l a t t e n d a n c e .

For t h i s reason# i t had been dec ided t h a t an exemption should be made

f o r a p p l i c a n t s who l i v e d i n remote areas of A u s t r a l i a # but whose

i d e n t i t i e s could be e s t a b l i s h e d p o s i t i v e l y by o t h e r means a v a i l a b l e t o

P as s po r ts O f f i c e s .

S p e c i f i e d o f f i c e r s of A u s t r a l i a n P as s po r ts O f f i c e s would be

g iv e n the d i s c r e t i o n t o exempt from p e r s o n a l a tt e nd a nc e a p p l i c a n t s who

have r e s i d e d f o r not less than 12 months a t a c u r r e n t address more than

100 k i l o m e t r e s from an O f f i c i a l A u s t r a l i a Post O f f i c e . A p p l i c a t i o n s

from such persons would be accepted by m a i l at th e A u s t r a l i a n Pas sp or ts

O f f i c e i n th e c a p i t a l c i t y o f the S t a t e of the a p p l i c a n t ' s r e s i d e n c e .

Mr Hayden s t r e s s e d t h a t # b e f o r e any exemption was approved#

f u l l checks would need t o be c a r r i e d out t o e s t a b l i s h p o s i t i v e l y the

i d e n t i t y o f each a p p l i c a n t seeking e x e m p t i o n .

Mr Hayden added t h a t u n m ar ri ed m ino rs (under 18 ye ar s o f age)

r e g a r d l e s s of t h e i r p la c e o f re s i d e n c e would a l s o be exempted from the

re qu ir e m e n t t o lodge p a s s p o r t a p p l i c a t i o n s p e r s o n a l l y # because o f th e

i nco nve ni enc e# d i s r u p t i o n t o s c h o o l i n g and# i n some cases# th e expense

t h a t would r e s u l t from t h e i r p e r s o n a l a t t e n d a n c e . A p p l i c a t i o n s on

b e h a l f o f unm arried minors not r e s i d i n g i n remote areas should t h e r e f o r e

be lodged p e r s o n a l l y by a p a r en t or gu ar dia n# a person w i t h l e g a l access

t o th e c h i l d # o r a r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f a sc hool# i n s t i t u t i o n or community

o r g a n i s a t i o n t h a t could p o s i t i v e l y i d e n t i f y th e c h i l d .