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Monday, 13 February 2017
Page: 581


Senator McKIM (Tasmania) (11:02): Thank you, Minister; I appreciate that clarification. The last matter I want to raise is a matter I raised last week. I am not sure if you were in the chamber or not, so I will go over it very quickly. We have seen an explosion in visas cancelled on character grounds over the last few years. I put the numbers on the record last week; rather than go through them again, I will just say that there has been a very significant increase since the previous round of amendments were made a few years ago. You may or may not have information here. If you do not, I am very happy for you take it on notice and come back to me. I am interested in the workload for the department and also for the minister's office here, given that explosion in the number of visas of various classes cancelled on character grounds. Could you also inform the Senate of the length of time that it has taken the department as well as the minister's office to process such matters. Perhaps you could come back with the average length of time, and what costs there are to the taxpayer, specifically in relation to the potential longer detention of larger numbers of people.