A range of support is available to skilled migrants and temporary visa holders in Tasmania who are experiencing hardship as a result of the COVID-19 response.
Details of support for temporary visa holders can be found at coronavirus.tas.gov.au/travellers-and-visitors
Details of specific support and assistance for international students in Tasmania can be found at Study Tasmania
Details of adjustments to Tasmanian skilled visa nomination requirements can be found at www.migration.tas.gov.au/news/covid19_updates
Tasmanian and Australian Government COVID-19 information
Tasmanian Government | Coronavirus Information
There are a range of support initiatives for individuals, communities, household and businesses listed on the Tasmanian Government's Coronavirus Stimulus and Support page coronavirus.tas.gov.au/stimulus-and-support
Australian Government www.australia.gov.au
Employment and financial support
- JobSeeker – If you currently receive payments from the Australian Government, such as Youth Allowance, Newstart, or Austudy, the Australian Government will provide you with a temporary payment of $550 per fortnight, known as the Coronavirus Supplement, from 27 April 2020. This payment is in addition to your usual payment. Read more about the Coronavirus Supplement.
- JobKeeper – The Australian Government’s JobKeeper program provides $1 500 per fortnight per employee to help eligible businesses cover the costs of wages for six months from 30 March 2020. Employees must be Australian citizens, permanent residents, (or holder of a special category visa) and have been employed full time, part time or casually for greater than 12 months. Read more about the JobKeeper program.
- Access to superannuation – If you are unable to meet immediate living expenses you may be eligible to access your Australian superannuation. Up to $10 000 may be available for individuals who were made redundant, whose working hours were reduced, or whose sole trader businesses were suspended or impacted due to COVID-19. Read more about accessing your superannuation.
- Rental housing support – tenants living at their rental property cannot be evicted by their landlords for rent arrears or for the expiry of their lease until at least 30 June 2020. You may also be able to renegotiate rent or break a lease due to extreme hardship. Read more about rental housing support.
- Rapid Response Skills initiative – provides funding of up to $3000 towards the cost of training for people who have lost their jobs because they have been made redundant, the place they worked has closed, or the employer had to let staff go. The Rapid Response Skills Matching Service will assess the skills of displaced workers and match them to businesses who need new, work-ready employees. Both services are available to holders of subclass 190, 489 and 491 visas. Read more about the Rapid Response Skills Initiative.
- Support for temporary visa holders – The Tasmanian Government has announced a package of assistance for temporary and provisional visa holders who have lost their jobs due to the restrictions in place to protect Tasmanians, and are not eligible for Australian Government Support. This includes:
- Pandemic Isolation Assistance Grants for those who can demonstrate genuine financial hardship as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
- Emergency relief and assistance will be provided through partnered non-government organisations where required.
- Support to return to country of origin.
- Working with employers who want to retain their employees because of their specialist skills in the State for when their business is able to start up so that we don’t lose skilled workers that we need.
This assistance is available to holders of subclass 500, 485, 489, 491,457, 482, 403, 417 and 462 visas.
Mental health and wellbeing
This is a challenging time for all Tasmanians and maintaining your mental health and wellbeing is important.
Seeking help is important and doing so will not affect your visa.
Please visit these websites for information or assistance:
Lifeline | Mental health and well being
Red Cross | Looking after your mental wellbeing during COVID-19
Australian Government Department of Health | Head to Health
One Door Mental Health | Emotional support in Mandarin and English
Headspace | Free support for 12 - 25 year olds
Beyond Blue | National help lines and websites
Beyond Blue | Mental health during the COVID-19 outbreak
Embrace Mental Health | Multicultural mental health site (many languages available)
There are a range of community organisations and Tasmanian Government initiatives in place to support migrants and the Tasmanian community.
Some other community resources for migrants in Tasmania include: