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Greens to move for international students inquiry

Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young says the Greens will move to initiate a Senate Inquiry into the treatment of international students in Australia.

Stories of student exploitation and mistreatment have been emerging from Australia’s burgeoning international education industry recently. The National Union of Students called for an inquiry into the issue last month.

“The international education sector exists at the intersection of Australia’s immigration and education regulations,” said Senator Hanson-Young.

“A Senate Inquiry would throw a spotlight onto some of the problems that are evident within some corners of international education in Australia, and help determine better ways forward.

“For the sake of not only international students’ rights, but also Australia’s reputation internationally, we need to make sure the industry is regulated properly, and the immigration and education aspects of the sector are working smoothly in tandem.”

Senator Hanson-Young said issues for international students that had been brought to the Greens’ attention included visa requirements, exploitation and discrimination within employment, student safety, information provided by migration agents, and political representation on campus.

“The demise of political representation on campus for international students due to Voluntary Student Unionism has compounded these issues,” said Senator Hanson-Young.

“Given the Rudd Government’s passion for its ‘education revolution’, now seems like an opportune time to carefully examine the issues at hand from a national perspective, and find better ways of supporting international students in Australia.

“The Greens hope the Senate will support our move for this important inquiry when Parliament resumes."

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