Data Snapshot on Youth Settlement Trends 2020-21
MYAN has once again developed a national snapshot on the number of young people aged 12-24 who arrived in Australia via the Family, Skilled and Humanitarian program streams in the 2020/21 financial year. Using the latest data from the Department of Home Affairs, the snapshot includes information on a range of demographic data,
including age, gender, religion, language and settlement location.
Key points from the snapshot include:
- The total number of youth arrivals during this period was 3,578-a significant decrease from the 9,474 young people who arrived in 2019/20 and the 13,759 young people who arrived in the 2018/19
- Young people arriving via the Family Stream comprised 79.5% of all youth arrivals, compared to those arriving through the Skilled Stream-17% and the Humanitarian Stream of just 3.5%
- 41.5% of all youth arrivals were of high-school age (12-17)
- 61% of all youth arrivals identified as female
- The top 3 countries of birth for young people arriving under the:
- Family Stream-Afghanistan, Vietnam and Pakistan
- Skilled Stream-Philippines, Indian and China, and
- Humanitarian Stream-Afghanistan, Venezuela and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
- New South Wales and Victoria continued to settle the largest numbers of young people- 61% of young people
from all the migration streams.
- The 2020-21 data highlights a significant decrease in the number of humanitarian arrivals into Australia compared to Family and Skilled visa holders, even though the quota for the Humanitarian Program was already reduced in the 2020-21 budget. Advice from the Australian Government is that program delivery was impacted due to the multiple challenges presented by the global COVID-19 pandemic, which meant the Humanitarian Program could not be delivered up to the ceiling.
- Limitations on the on-ground capacity of key delivery partners offshore, like UNHCR and IOM due to COVID-19.
- The broader COVID-19 situation and associated local travel restrictions in host countries have rendered some refugee camps out of bounds, or otherwise reduced the ability of applicants to attend interviews and medical appointments.
- Locally engaged staff in many locations continue to operate on a rotational basis given COVID-19 risks, thereby reducing administrative and interpreting support for humanitarian visa processing activities.
- Onshore, interview processing and the collection of biometric identifiers was disrupted by responses to COVID-19 outbreaks in various jurisdictions.
- Unlike Skilled or Family visa holders, Humanitarian visa holders are often undocumented and have no legal status in the countries of temporary refuge. This subjects them to additional clearances from the host countries before they are granted exit permits to allow them to travel to Australia. The pandemic delayed or halted this process at many locations.
- There were travel exemptions applied to Australian Citizens, permanent residents and family members of Skilled and Family Visa holders. Humanitarian visa holders are not considered Permanent Residents until they arrive in Australia as an Australian Permanent Resident is defined as (among other things) being
usually resident in Australia.
- 13,750 places have been set for the Humanitarian Program for 2021-22. Australia has a responsibility to meet its international protection obligation by offering protection to the most vulnerable-especially at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic has reduced access to protection. MYAN welcomes the recent announcement that fully vaccinated refugee and humanitarian visa holders will now be able to enter Australia from December 1st, 2021 and will continue to advocate for an increase in the size of the Humanitarian program, and enhanced access to family reunion.