Prime Minister Julia Gillard says “foreigners on 457 visas are taking the jobs of everyday Australians.”
At the same time, Gillard’s own fully imported Scottish communications director John McTernan is employed by the Office of Prime Minister on a 457 visa.
Mr McTernan was former British Labor PM Tony Blair’s director of political operations. Gillard imported him to do the same dirty business. Mc Ternan was the sicko behind Gillard’s divisive misogyny stunt last year.
Asked whether he was on a 457 visa, Mr McTernan, responded to ABC News Online: “Hardly f**king relevant”. But later he fessed up to being on a 457 visa, having originally been granted one under the former Howard government.
The bastard is probably earning $250,000 a year to spin crap to keep Gillard’s knife throwing on the front foot.
At the same time Labor governments in South Australia and Tasmania have emerged as the largest employers of 457 visa holders in their states, using foreign workers to meet labour shortages in their health systems and blunting the Gillard government’s crackdown on the temporary visa program.
Data released by Immigration Minister Brendan O’Connor yesterday showed the South Australian and Tasmanian governments accounted for about 20 per cent of 457 visas granted in each state in the past eight months: the Tasmanian government applied for 60 of the 270 visas granted; the South Australian government 240 of 1360. The majority of the visas were for general medical practitioners and health workers.
Among the Liberal-held states, the government accounted for between 5.1 per cent of 457 visas in Western Australia and 7.6 per cent in Victoria.
Even the Unions admits to hiring 457 Visa scabs. Australia’s Finance Sector Union has recently revealed it has a US strategic corporate researcher on its payroll to train local staff.
This follows admissions by the Transport Workers Union and the Maritime Union of Australia that they had engaged overseas workers on 457 visas, the FSU confirmed it had employed the US researcher for six months, and the arrangement had been extended by six months to June 30 this year.
Most of the recruitment consultants in Finance Sector are imported British on 457 Visas, as if Australians couldn’t do a better job of recruitment in their own country? Michael Page, Hudson, Robert Half, Robert Walters, Ambition, Hays all employ Brits on 457 Visas to the exclusion of Australians. The 457 Visa rort has been going on for years under both Howard’s Libs and Rudd’s Labs.
The Labor states said their use of the program was based on genuine skills shortages in the health system and the South Australian government said the 457 visa workers it employed were providing an “essential service to the community”. SA Employment Minister Grace Portolesi conceded the Weatherill government was reliant on foreign workers.
Spin, spin and more spin.
A spokesman for Tasmanian Premier Lara Giddings said there was “no evidence” that 457 visas were being used inappropriately in the state’s public service. “While there has been an increase in recent times, this has been off a low base and is primarily in the medical profession where skills shortages are not uncommon,” the spokesman said.
Gillard, while herself presiding over a record number of 457 visas being granted last year, claims Labor inherited a system that was out of control under the Libs. The she launches Labor’s assault on the use of 457 skilled worker visas last month and vowed to “stop foreign workers being put at the front of the queue with Australian workers at the back”.
Anecdotal evidence of employer “rorts” shows that, of the 107,510 workers on 457 visas in Australia, about 85,000 are highly skilled, holding at least a degree or diploma qualification. The top occupation for 457 workers in Australia is program or project administrator, followed by cook, marketing specialist and specialist manager. The highest growth in occupations sought was for cooks, with a 46 per cent increase since last June. In the past eight months, 12 per cent of visas were granted to the construction and healthcare sectors. Most workers came from India, Britain and Ireland.
The number of 457 visa applications lodged during the past eight months was 8.3 per cent higher than the same period last year, while the number of 457 visa holders as of February 28 was 21.5 per cent higher.