Labor’s proposed new temporary visa for parents is extraordinarily generous. It will apply to all parents with children in Australia regardless of the children’s capacity to provide for their parents. There is no cap on the numbers. Nor is there any requirement that sponsors take on any financial obligation for the public services their parents receive.
Labor’s proposal is for a renewable five-year temporary visa. It is a de facto permanent entry visa, since no Australian government will force parents to return home after five to ten years of continuous residence here. It will eventually require the Australian taxpayer to assume the welfare and health costs of these elderly residents.
There is no parallel to Labor’s proposal in other Western countries. All, even Canada, hedge parent migration by applying strict financial obligations on the sponsors.
This report explores the implications of the parent visa should it be implemented as implied by the limited information Labor has provided on the rules determining who is eligible. It could result in the issuance of some 200,000 parent visas in the next three years, should Labor win the 2019 federal election.