Pause on PhD to run an impact study on the Aussies Abandoned by the Aust Govt

Executive Summary:
During the unprecedented pandemic of COVID-19 and subsequent restrictions on travel, the Australian government implemented restrictions, or international arrival caps, on the number of people able to enter the country. This also included a cap on the number of Australian citizens able to return each week. These caps were announced by the National cabinet on 13th July and came into effect on Monday 20th July, thereby limiting arrivals into all Australian states to 4000 people per week. In part, this was in response to the outbreak in Victoria and the closure of Melbourne international airport on the 2nd July. The closure was initially temporary. However, it was extended to 24th October. The announcement of this extension overlapped with the announcement of the 4000-person cap on international arrivals effective 20th July, thus creating an even higher demand for seats on international flights. It was not until September that the National Cabinet raised the caps slightly by 1500 in a phased manner starting 27th September. From the 4000 individuals able to enter, it has been reported that less than 40% of these arrivals were Australian citizens or Permanent Residents. This study aims to explore the impact of these flight caps on Australian citizens and Permanent Residents using a narrative analysis of people’s experiences collected through Focus Group Discussions and Individual interviews. The outcome is anticipated to inform recovery and support options for this cohort, to inform public health and future Government Policy, as well as to provide an avenue for participants to be able to discuss their experiences, to feel connected to others enduring a similar experience, and to assess the impact over a two year time frame.

Published by sandijames

Graduate researcher at La Trobe Uni Australia, ethnography, traditional alcohol, Kadazandusun Sabah Malaysia,, alcohol policy, public health and medical anthropology. We also have established a Mindfulness Based Circus Arts pilot program in a rural school in Sabah. I also run ultramarathons in my spare time. My other research interests include injecting drug use, the war on drugs that is killing PWUD, and the decriminalisation or legalisation of drugs that are currently classed as illicit. I like to keep active and busy..

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