If there is a downturn in the Australian economy, many New
Zealanders long-term residents there will be among the worst
affected, because they are ineligible for welfare support
That is the view of Timothy Gassin, a Melbourne-based
spokesman for OzKiwi, a group lobbying for long-term New
Zealand residents in Australia to have the same rights as
Australian residents in New Zealand.
Mr Gassin, who is an Australian with a New Zealand-born wife,
said that if there was an economic downturn in Australia,
''New Zealanders are bound to be disproportionately
''Unlike all other permanent residents, they will not have
access to unemployment benefits. ''They would also not have
access to support for retraining.
''It is certainly unfair that New Zealanders are denied the
same rights as all others living permanently in Australia.
''They ... pay their taxes, contribute to the economy, and
volunteer in their communities, but are denied many of the
services for which their taxes pay and are permanently
The issue affecting and annoying the largest number of people
was ''the lack of voting rights and the inability to gain
citizenship'', he said.