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Australian Immigration Daily News

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Australian Immigration News 12 February 2020

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

  • Australian Financial Review and The Australian lead widespread reporting on Tuesday's High Court ruling that found Indigenous Australians cannot be regarded as "aliens" under the Constitution and deported on character grounds. The Law Council said the ruling was a "natural outcome of Mabo", and Acting Immigration Minister Alan Tudge said the decision could have implications for the operation of the Australian Citizenship Act and the Migration Act.
  • The Australian reports Acting Immigration Minister Alan Tudge has confirmed the Department of Home Affairs is not finalising applications for individuals currently in mainland China due to the coronavirus travel ban. However, Mr Tudge said the government was still processing student and other visa applications from China, and arrangements were in place to ensure approved visas are granted "as soon as possible" once the travel restrictions end.
  • Adelaide Now reports the Cairns Chamber of Commerce said it is confident the requested changes to the region’s designated area migration agreement (DAMA) will be implemented from April. Migration manager Geoff Heath said this year's requests included age concessions for people applying for the permanent visa pathway, as well as a request to include Cape York and the Torres Strait in the designated area for the agreement. Mr Heath also said a wider variety of health roles were asked to be included in the DAMA scope, along with a renamed 'marine environment interpreter' role.
Indigenous men cannot be deported as 'aliens', says High Court
Australian Financial Review, Other, 11/02/2020, Michael Pelly
An Aboriginal man who was to be deported under "character" laws was released from detention on Tuesday when the High Court found Indigenous Australians cannot be regarded as "aliens" under the Constitution. Brendan Thoms, 31, walked out of the Pinkenba Immigration Transit Centre in Brisbane around midday after spending 500 nights there since he was released from prison in September 2018.

Cool heads needed or coronavirus will kill off a vital revenue stream
The Australian, Other, 12/02/2020, Tim Dodd
University of NSW vice-chancellor Ian Jacobs has found a couple of things to be grateful for in the midst of the coronavirus crisis that has kept more than 6000 students in China who should be on his campus for orientation week, which started on Monday.

High Court rules on new status for indigenous people
The Australian, Other, 12/02/2020, Olivia Caisley
A landmark High Court ruling has found indigenous people — even those born overseas — cannot be considered “aliens” under the Constitution and deported on character grounds. The 4-3 split decision on Tuesday was described by the Morrison government as creating “a new category of persons”, while constitutional lawyers said it could create “special rights or privileges” for Aboriginal people.

Lunacy protects foreigners over us
The Australian, Other, 11/02/2020, Chris Merritt
The lunacy at the heart of the latest­ decision by the High Court comes down to this: this is pure racism­ built upon an illegitimate exercise of judicial power. By the narrowest of margins, the nation’s highest court has elevat­ed a racial distinction to a position of constitutional privil­ege that would never be accepted if such a question were put to the people at a referendum.

Home Affairs halts new visas for Chinese students
The Australian, Other, 11/02/2020, Tim Dodd
In a new setback for Australia's $40bn a year international education sector, the Department of Home Affairs has stopped issuing new student visas to Chinese students who have been accepted for study by Australian education institutions. A group of education agents — whose members channel Chinese students into all major universities — says it has not seen any student visas issued to mainland Chinese applicants since February 1, the day Scott Morrison imposed the coronavirus travel ban.

A surprise judgment from a conservative court
Canberra Times, Other, 12/02/2020, Kim Rubenstein
A surprise decision from a normally cautious and conservatively cast High Court has ruled that Aboriginal Australians can't be deported even if they aren't citizens because of their "special" connection to the country. The landmark 4-3 majority decision, with seven separate judgments, places Indigenous Australians (meeting the tripartite Mabo test of biological descent, self- identification and Indigenous community recognition as Aboriginal) beyond the reach of the Commonwealth's "aliens and naturalisation" head of power.

Death of son while mother faced coronavirus ban was 'tragic'
The Courier Mail, Other, 11/02/2020
Liberal frontbencher Alan Tudge says the recent case of a mother being "caught up" in the government's coronavirus travel ban while her son was on life-support was absolutely "tragic".
Also reported by: Sky News Australia (Online)

FNQ migration agreement:
Adelaide Now, Other, 12/02/2020, Alicia Nally
The Cairns Chamber of Commerce is confident changes the organisation has requested to the region’s designated area migration agreement – which include specialised jobs and include Cape York and the Torres Strait for the first time – will be implemented from April. Migration manager Geoff Heath said throughout the five-year DAMA there were provisions to submit deeds of variation annually.

1267 Chinese Deakin University students stranded due to travel restrictions
The Mercury, Other, 12/02/2020, Tamara Mcdonald
More than 1260 Chinese Deakin University students are stranded abroad and unable to enter Australia due to coronavirus travel restrictions. Deakin University has offices in Beijing and Wuhan — the city where the outbreak, which has claimed more than 1000 lives globally, started. It was the first Australian university to establish permanent offices in the cities.

High Court rules Indigenous Australians cannot be deported
WA Today, Other, 11/02/2020, Aiesha Saunders
The High Court has struck a major blow to the federal government's attempt to deport two Indigenous men, ruling that Aboriginal Australians are exempt from the Commonwealth's "aliens power" under the constitution and cannot be deported. In a ruling that further enshrines the rights of Indigenous Australians, a 4-3 majority said Aboriginal Australians have a "special cultural, historical and spiritual connection" with Australia that is already recognised by common law.

High Court rules Aboriginal people cannot be deported for criminal convictions, cannot be 'alien' to Australia
ABC Online, Other, 11/02/2020
An Aboriginal man who spent 500 days in immigration detention was released today after the High Court ruled that Indigenous Australians cannot be deported. The court found Aboriginal people held a special status and were exempt from immigration laws, after it considered the cases of two convicted criminals whom the Government wanted to deport.

High Court decision in Love and Thoms case reflects Aboriginal connection to the land
ABC Online, Other, 12/02/2020, Anne Twomey
Among the most highly controversial subjects today is how one determines who is an Aboriginal person and whether Aboriginal people should be treated differently to other groups under the law and the constitution. The High Court's judgment in the Love and Thoms cases dealt directly with these issues, and like the general public, the court was on some points fiercely divided.

High court rules Aboriginal Australians are not 'aliens' under the constitution and cannot be deported
Guardian Australia, Other, 11/02/2020, Paul Karp
The four to three split decision giving Aboriginal Australians special status is a major defeat for the deportation powers of the home affairs department The high court has decided that Aboriginal Australians are not aliens for the purpose of the constitution, a major defeat for the deportation powers of Peter Dutton’s home affairs department and a significant development in the rights of Indigenous Australians.

High court rules Aboriginal Australians are not 'aliens' under the constitution and cannot be deported
Guardian Australia, Other, 11/02/2020, Paul Karp
The Australian government has released an Aboriginal man from immigration detention after a landmark high court case decided Aboriginal Australians are not aliens for the purpose of the constitution and cannot be deported. On Tuesday afternoon the acting immigration minister, Alan Tudge, said the government is still reviewing the decision but “in the light of the court’s ruling, Mr [Brendan] Thoms was this morning released from immigration detention”.

Indigenous MP lauds High Court ruling
The Advocate (Hepburn), Other, 12/02/2020
Labor MP and Wiradjuri woman Linda Burney has welcomed an "incredibly significant" High Court ruling that indigenous people cannot be deported. The court found Aboriginal people hold a special status and are exempt from immigration laws, after considering the cases of two convicted criminals the government wanted to deport.

Australia cannot deport Aboriginal people
Wauchope Gazette, Other, 11/02/2020, Daniel McCulloch & Finbar O Mallon
The High Court has ruled Aboriginal Australians cannot be considered "aliens" under the constitution, presenting a major hurdle to the deportation of two men. The 4-3 majority decision is a big victory for New Zealand-born Brendan Thoms, who is fighting against deportation after serving time in prison.
Also reported by: Katherine Times

High Court rules against Immigration laws for Indigenous people
The Wire, Other, 11/02/2020
In a landmark case, the High Court has found that indigenous people are exempt from Australian immigration laws. The case came about when the Australian government tried to deport two overseas-born men after they committed crimes.

Foreign-born criminals who claim to be Aboriginal win fight to stay in Australia as High Court rules indigenous people can't be deported
Daily Mail Australia, Other, 11/02/2020, Stephen Johnson
Aboriginal people cannot be deported from Australia because they are exempt from immigration laws, the High Court has decided. Australia's most powerful court has delivered a majority 4-3 verdict ruling that indigenous residents born overseas can't be considered 'aliens' under the constitution.

High Court decision should have been 'put to the people in a referendum'
Sky News Australia, Other, 11/02/2020
The Australian’s Legal Affairs editor Chris Merritt says Tuesday’s high court judgement that Aboriginal Australians cannot be deported even if they’re not Australian citizens has “elevated a racial distinction to a point of constitutional privilege”. The government was seeking to deport Daniel Love and Brendan Thoms for serious crimes committed while in Australia.


Indigenous people exempt from parts of immigration law
WEB MSN Australia, Other, 11/02/2020
The High Court has found Indigenous people are exempt from a section of Australian immigration law.

Government responds to High Court decision
WEB MSN Australia, Other, 11/02/2020
The acting Immigration Minister said the ruling is a significant one that could impact several of Australia's immigration policies.

Sky News Live, AM Agenda, 12/02/2020, Tom Connell and Annelise Nielsen
Interview with Pauline Wright, President, Law Council of Australia. Nielsen opens a discussion regarding the High Court's decision not to deport two Australian Aboriginals despite being born overseas.

Sky News Live, The Kenny Report, 11/02/2020, Chris Kenny
Interview with Alan Tudge, Acting Immigration Minister and Population Minister from Canberra. Tudge says the Liberals have a clear climate policy and have set out ambitious emissions reductions targets for 2030. Kenny says there is a High Court decision that stops the Australian Government from deporting two citizens of other countries as they have Aboriginal heritage and not Australian citizens.

ABC News, ABC News , 12/02/2020, Michael Tetlow
A landmark High Court ruling in Canberra is going to see Aboriginal people born outside Australia exempt from immigration laws. One of the two Indigenous men who brought the case has been released from immigration detention, where he was awaiting possible deportation.

Also reported by: widespread similar coverage broadcast across national, metro and regional TV and radio

ABC, ABC News , 11/02/2020, James McHale
Aboriginal Australians born outside the country will be exempted from immigration laws following a High Court ruling in Canberra today. One of the two Indigenous men who brought the case, NZ-born Aboriginal man Brendon Thoms, has been released from immigration detention, where he was awaiting possible deportation.

ABC, The Drum, 11/02/2020, Ellen Fanning
Continuing panel discussion with non-executive director for a range of organisations Rebecca Davies, Centre for Independent Studies research director Simon Cowan, The Saturday Paper chief political correspondent Karen Middleton and National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation CEO Pat Turner, and academic lawyer and centre manager of UNSW Indigenous Law Centre Eddie Synot. Fanning says Indigenous Australians were awarded citizenship in 1967 and a landmark High Court ruling today means that it can never be denied that First Australians belong to the country.

ABC News, ABC National News, 11/02/2020, Gemma Veness
Pre-recorded Panel Discussion with Mary Crock, Professor, Sydney Law School and Dr Harry Hobbs, Indigenous Law Researcher. Veness says Indigenous man Brendan Thoms has been released from immigration detention following a High Court ruling in Canberra. 


2SER FM, The Wire, 11/02/2020, Roderick Chambers
Pre-recorded Interview with Anne Twomey, Constitutional Law Professor, University of Sydney by Amanda Copp. The High Court has ruled on the Indigenous immigration case.

ABC Radio Melbourne, Evenings, 11/02/2020, DAvid Astle
Continuing Regular Segment: Writs and Cures with Bill O'Shea AM, lawyer and Dr Karen Gaunson, psychiatrist. O'Shea and Astle discuss the benefits of the religious discrimination bill, which is yet to be passed.

ABC News, Drive, 11/02/2020, Glenn Bartholomew
Pre-recorded interview with Professor Anne Twomey, constitutional expert, University of Sydney. Bartholomew states Daniel Love and Brendan Thoms had been detained and threatened with deportation after failing their migration character test as a result of serving jail sentences. 

ABC Radio Canberra, Drive, 11/02/2020, Anna Vidot
Interview with University of Technology Sydney Faculty of Law lecturer Harry Hobbs. Vidot says the High Court has been deliberating if a person can be Aboriginal but also be considered alien under the Constitution. 


ABC Radio Canberra, PM, 11/02/2020, Linda Mottram
Pre-recorded interview with Anne Twomey, Constitutional Expert, University of Sydney. Mottram says the High Court has ruled Aboriginal Australians are not aliens under the Australian Constitution.
 

Radio National, RN Drive, 11/02/2020, Patricia Karvelas
Interview with Griffith University's School of Law Associate Professor Kate Galloway. Karvelas says Australian immigration laws will no longer apply to Aboriginal people who are born overseas following a landmark decision by the High Court in Canberra earlier today. 


Triple J, Hack, 11/02/2020, Avani Dias
Interview with Claire Gibbs, Lawyer, Maurice Blackburn. Dias reports the High Court rules the Aboriginal people hold special status and they are spared from immigration laws.
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