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Estimate reveal more blow outs of way as boat arrivals exceed 18,000

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Michael Keenan MP - Federal Member for Stirling ESTIMATES REVEAL MORE BLOW OUTS ON WAY AS BOAT ARRIVALS EXCEED 18,000 UNDER LABOR May 21, 2012

The arrival of two more boats, with over 80 people, means more than 18,000 people have arrived under Labor and over 1,000 so far this month alone, a new monthly record, Shadow Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Scott Morrison and Shadow Minister for Justice, Customs and Border Protection, Michael Keenan said today.

"Labor’s record failure on our borders continues to get worse as every new boat arrives. More than 18,000 have now arrived since Labor abolished the Coalition’s proven border protection measures and more than 1,000 people have now arrived this month, the biggest number of people to arrive in a single month under Labor," Mr Morrison said.

"These latest arrivals underscore the budget blow out on boats that taxpayers will have to pay under Labor’s failed policies. In the last 12 months Labor’s budget has blown out by $1.7 billion and evidence provided at Senate Estimates today reveals further blowouts are likely, as once again the Government continues to underestimate the cost of their failures," he said.

"Senate Estimates confirmed today that Labor’s budget is still based on just 450 people turning up every month. Yet in the past two months more than 2,000 people have arrived, with an average of over 700 a month since Labor introduced their community release policy last November.

"Senate Estimates today also revealed that the Government believes there will be 8,400 people who arrived on illegal boats in the system next year, either in detention or in the community. That is almost 2,700 more than they estimated just a few months ago, with community detention and bridging visa estimates more than double the Government’s original forecast.

"These increases are also based on no increase in boat arrivals.

"Any claimed saving from the government’s community release policy is now being swallowed by the increased numbers that are arriving due to the pull factors of Labor’s let them in, let them out approach. This is policy that is eating its own tail, not just chasing it.

"This is a policy that is guaranteeing more boat arrivals and more budget blow outs. Labor’s loss of control of our borders is complete," Mr Morrison said.

Mr Keenan said: "Three illegal boat arrivals in under 24 hours, bringing over 1,000 people across our borders this month alone has confirmed that 2012 is set to be a record year for the people smugglers under the Gillard Government.

"Under Labor 18,000 people have arrived illegally since they abolished the proven border protection policies of the Howard Government - this is no longer a border protection crisis it is a complete and utter collapse of the Commonwealth’s ability to control our borders.

"Illegal boat arrivals are streaming across our borders at such a rapid rate that the hard working men and women of our Border Protection Command are placed under severe strain and pressure yet Labor’s only response is to cut their staffing numbers by a further 750 people.

"This is a Government whose consistent inaction to stop people smuggling and control who is coming to Australia shows that they are not capable of doing the things that are required of people who put up their hands for these positions of national responsibility.

"Only a change in Government will see a change in policy and some resolve to drive people smugglers out of business," Mr Keenan said.

© Authorised by Michael Keenan MP, 203 Wanneroo Road, Tuart Hill WA 6060