Like what you've read?

On Line Opinion is the only Australian site where you get all sides of the story. We don't
charge, but we need your support. Here�s how you can help.

  • Advertise

    We have a monthly audience of 70,000 and advertising packages from $200 a month.

  • Volunteer

    We always need commissioning editors and sub-editors.

  • Contribute

    Got something to say? Submit an essay.

 The National Forum   Donate   Your Account   On Line Opinion   Forum   Blogs   Polling   About   
On Line Opinion logo ON LINE OPINION - Australia's e-journal of social and political debate


On Line Opinion is a not-for-profit publication and relies on the generosity of its sponsors, editors and contributors. If you would like to help, contact us.


RSS 2.0

The classic move: blaming migrants

By David Hale - posted Friday, 15 May 2020

The Australian Labor Senator Kristina Keneally has come up with a classic way to help Australians, beat-up on immigrants. The Senator in an op-ed piece recently talked about the need to reset the migration system. Basically, reduce the number of migrants coming into the country.

A tribal, nationalistic, us against them, and Trump like commentary. Where if one gives that commentary as a politician, it may sound better than someone shouting the same thing at the local pub.

One can be fair to the Senator and argue she merely wants to help Australians. The problem of course, like every other time people cite migrants as the problem, it does not help.


The Senator wrote of the unemployed and underemployed Australians. Agreeing, with an economist she mentioned, that these people, if retrained, could fill jobs, if not for those pesky migrants.

For one, most of the unemployed are short-term unemployed. They will find a job without anyone needing to attack migrants.

The underemployed in say retail, may not want to retrain, especially in another industry.

The long-term unemployed have multiple barriers to employment that go beyond a lack of training, or migrants.

The Senator also noted that young Australians are particularly disadvantaged. The unemployment rate is higher for them, higher than the general rate.

Once again, the solution to this complex issue goes beyond blaming migrants.


It was quite telling that there was not a single mention, in the op-ed piece, of the benefits to temporary migrants themselves.

No mention of how their lives are improved almost overnight, by coming here.

The World Bank notes that migrants from poor countries, can earn on average 54 times more in a rich country than a poor one.

  1. Pages:
  2. Page 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. All

Discuss in our Forums

See what other readers are saying about this article!

Click here to read & post comments.

38 posts so far.

Share this:
reddit this reddit thisbookmark with Del.icio.usdigg thisseed newsvineSeed NewsvineStumbleUpon StumbleUponsubmit to propellerkwoff it

About the Author

David Hale is an Anglican University Lay Chaplain, staff worker for the Australian Student Christian Movement and a member of the Anglican Pacifist Fellowship.

Other articles by this Author

All articles by David Hale

Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

Article Tools
Comment 38 comments
Print Printable version
Subscribe Subscribe
Email Email a friend

About Us Search Discuss Feedback Legals Privacy