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What are the campaign objectives?

The Back Your Neighbour campaign is run by the Local Government Mayoral Taskforce Supporting People Seeking Asylum.

The Taskforce’s purpose is to coordinate joint state-wide advocacy by Australian Local Government Councils and share resources and practical responses by communities to the issues caused by negative policies towards people seeking asylum.

The Taskforce is currently made up of more than 40 Local Governments nationwide, who are speaking up for the thousands of people living without support while their claims for refugee status are being processed. Some people have been waiting almost a decade for a final decision.

We urge the Federal Government to:

  1. Provide everyone with a valid visa with work, travel and study rights.
  2. Expand the Status Resolution Support Services (SRSS) eligibility criteria and simplify the application process so that people in need can access health care, disability, housing support and other essential services.
  3. Ensure an independent, timely and fair application and merits review process for all humanitarian applications.
  4. Provide people who have received a negative refugee determination under the ‘Fast Track’ system with a fair review process.
  5. Continue to invest resources to urgently clear the backlog of asylum applications and appeals.
  6. Abolish temporary visas like Temporary Protection Visas and Safe Haven Enterprise Visas and replace them with permanent protection visas and pathways to citizenship for all humanitarian arrivals.

Read more about our Strategic Priorities in our Terms of Reference.

Our History

Since 2018, the Local Government Mayoral Taskforce Supporting People Seeking Asylum has been advocating for the rights of people seeking asylum to the Federal and Victorian Government.

Through a Mayoral Roundtable held on 31 July 2018, it was determined that there is a need for a more collaborative approach across Australian Local Government Councils to establish a joint voice for people seeking asylum affected by cuts to the Status Resolution Support Services program.

Led for Greater Dandenong City Council, a group of Councils agreed to establish a taskforce, called the Local Government Mayoral Taskforce Supporting People Seeking Asylum.

On 3 December 2018, the Taskforce launched the Back Your Neighbour campaign. The campaign symbolises a unified approach with Councils together with community ambassadors to advocate for a fairer and swifter Refugee Status Determination system.

Click here for a list of Taskforce Members and Supporters. 

Click here for Taskforce Meeting Minutes by Greater Dandenong City Council, Secretariat of the Taskforce.