In news that can break many hearts Leader of the Opposition, Judith Collins has refused to put any timeframe on when her future National government would let temporary migrants stuck overseas return back into the country.
Ms Collins was at the Indian Weekender studio early this morning where she discussed a range of issues including her vision of New Zealand and how she intends to manage the seemingly mutually competing goal of managing a public health pandemic and growing an economy.
When pointed that there was a growing perception in the community that the National Party was equally ambiguous on important immigration issues affecting the community, particularly on the critical matter of tens of thousands of temporary migrants being locked out of closed borders, Ms Collins deflected with the suggestion that once into the government her focus will to manage borders in an effective manner before allowing stranded migrants back into the country.
On being probed further if she was willing to put any timeframe on when earliest her future national government would be able to get stranded temporary migrants back into the country, Ms Collins refused to commit to a timeframe.
She also reiterated that in government her priority would be first to ensure that a vast number of New Zealand citizens and residents who have lost jobs due to Covid inflicted economic disruption before getting new temporary migrants into the country.
When reminded that she was once again accentuating an oft-repeated, popular perception that migrants take away jobs of citizens without any evidence-based research, Ms Collins asserted that her government’s focus would be on improving the economy, so there are enough jobs for temporary migrants.
No commitment to investing in dedicated MIQ for temporary migrants
Ms Collins was asked if her Party would commit to investing in building more Managed Isolation and Quarantine facilities dedicated for temporary migrants who became stuck overseas for no fault of their own, to which she pointed towards her Party’s border management policy.
Acknowledges skill shortage in NZ
Talking cautiously on National Immigration policy, which Ms Collins was not willing to reveal much, she said that there was a shortage of skilled workers and her future government would balance that need in a careful manner.
However, despite acknowledging about skill shortages, Ms Collins has nothing substantial to offer tens of thousands of temporary migrant workers, who till recently were living and working in New Zealand before a seemingly innocuous overseas travel caught them unaware and changed fortune - possibly irreversibly - if not acted upon favourably with kindness, compassion and logical thinking.
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