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Hansard ID: HANSARD-1323879322-122868

Hansard session: Fifty-Seventh Parliament, First Session (57-1)


Mr ALEX GREENWICH (Sydney) (14:51:18):

My question is also directed to the Minister for Multiculturalism. It is a big day for him.


I remind members that clapping in the Chamber is not usually allowed.


The Minister for Multiculturalism is almost as popular as the Minister for Transport today. Given the importance of international students, migrant workers and international tourists to Sydney, how is the Government working with our multicultural communities to attract and welcome them to our global city?

Mr MARK COURE (OatleyMinister for Multiculturalism, and Minister for Seniors) (14:52:16):

— Twice in one day. Lucky me. I thank the member for his question and for sharing my passion for multicultural communities in Sydney and across New South Wales. This week marked an extraordinary milestone for our State, as Australia's national borders were finally reopened. This is not just significant for people with aspirations of finding a new life for themselves in New South Wales, but it is also incredibly important for our multicultural communities that have family and friends living overseas. They can be reunited once more. Spending two years apart from the people we care about is a very long time.

I thank the Premier and Minister Ayres for leading the reopening of our national borders and making sure that our State is ready for it. We certainly are ready. The pandemic has had a profound impact on Sydney, as it has on many other global cities around the world. For instance, Australia's international student numbers have more than halved since the onset of the pandemic. It was a tough time for the students who stayed, many having come from countries such as Nepal, Bangladesh, India, China and Indonesia. The New South Wales Government recognised this and worked to support international students while they were away from their families. In 2020 the Government pledged over $20 million for the welfare of international students.

A member interjected.



Twenty million. This included funding for temporary crisis accommodation for those who needed it. I am proud to say that program has successfully met those needs, including temporary accommodation support for over 6,500 international students and their dependants.

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