Strike action in Australia set to affect visa holders and travellers

by Ray Clancy on June 15, 2015

in Australia Travel

People with visa issues or arriving in Australia face potential delays due to industrial action by certain union members working for the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP).

The industrial action began on Monday 15 June and is due to continue intermittently until Friday 26 June. During this period, airports, client service centres, ports, container examination facilities and visa processes may be affected.

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Strike action is being undertaken by some Community and Public Sector Union members

The industrial action is being undertaken by Community and Public Sector Union members employed with the DIBP and a department spokesman said that it is working with partner agencies, airport owners and airlines to minimise impact on the travelling public and on cargo and mail operations. The Portfolio is also ensuring appropriate contingencies are in place for visa and citizenship services.

Australian Customs and Border Protection Service deputy chief executive officer for Border Operations, Michael Outram, said there are arrangements in place to protect Australia’s borders and minimise the impact on business operations.

‘While there will be some delays in services, we anticipate that contingency measures in place will keep interruptions to a minimum. We regret any inconvenience this industrial action may cause the public and industry,’ he explained.

‘During protected industrial action, the health and safety of our people and the protection of the border continue to be our priority,’ he added.

Passengers may be impacted at international airports from Tuesday 16 June 2015. Regular updates about protected industrial action will be published on Portfolio websites; www.customs.gov.au and www.immi.gov.au and official Facebook pages.

Airports are likely to be affected on different days. Currently there is a schedule for action at Perth and Darwin on 18 June, Brisbane and Gold Coast on 24 June, Melbourne on the 25 June and Adelaide and Cairns on the 26 June.

Meanwhile, South Australia has become the latest state to introduce application fees for skilled and business nominations. It joins the ACT, Western Australia, New South Wales and Queensland who already charge application fees.

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