Rookie Social Services Minister, Christian Porter has made another blunder, this time incorrectly naming the exemptions to the Newly Arrived Resident’s Waiting Period (NARWP).

In attempting to justify the Turnbull Government’s $225 million cut to newly arrived migrants, Mr Porter told the ABC:

"The only exception to that (the NARWP) is refugee and humanitarian arrivals. But there's one other very curious exemption that has existed for a while and that is if an Australian citizen or resident goes overseas and marries and brings back a wife or dependent child, then the wife and the dependent child, prior to this budget, have been able to enter the welfare system straight away without engaging in the wait that every other newly arrived migrant has to wait."


This is completely wrong.

As detailed by his own Department there are a number of exemptions to the NARWP including people who:

  • have already served a NARWP under the SSAct or the Student and Youth Assistance Act, OR
  • have arrived in Australia under the refugee and humanitarian programs, OR
  • are a family member of a refugee or humanitarian migrant, OR
  • were a family member of a former refugee or humanitarian migrant at the time the former refugee or humanitarian migrant arrived in Australia, OR
  • are an Australian citizen, OR
  • are a family member of an Australian citizen, OR
  • are a family member of a person who has lawfully been a permanent resident of Australia at any time for a continuous period of not less than 2 years, OR
  • are a refugee or former refugee and has a QRE for the payments and benefits specified under SSAct section 7(6), OR
  • were a family member of a refugee or former refugee at the time the refugee or former refugee arrived in Australia, OR
  • have a QRE for a payment or benefit specified under section 7(6AA) and holds a visa determined by the Minister, OR
  • have suffered a substantial change in circumstances for reasons beyond their control (SpB) (, OR
  • are a special need relative or a carer as defined in the Migration Regulations (CP only).

The exemptions that Mr Porter is removing provide important support to newly arrived migrants that allow them access to Newstart Allowance; Youth Allowance; Austudy Payment; Carer Payments; Sickness Allowance; Special Benefit; and other payments.

It is extremely concerning that the Minister isn’t across the detail of the massive cuts he is making to newly arrived migrants.