Support people seeking asylum

Safety net cut for people seeking asylum

The Brotherhood of St Laurence has been assisting refugees and migrants for more than half a century.

We are deeply concerned about the Australian Government’s recent policy change which will cut off the very modest income support available for people seeking asylum who are living in our community. This change to the Status Resolution Support Services is hurting some of the most vulnerable people as they await processing of their refugee applications. 

We know from the programs we run that people seeking asylum are highly motivated to gain jobs and become independent so they can build better futures.  The loss of the safety net – the payment is 89% of the Newstart Allowance – will make it even harder to find work. This measure runs counter to the cherished Australian value of the ‘fair go’ for all. 

Some of the affected people have lived in Australia for several years. They are our neighbours and friends. They are members of our community who should be treated with dignity and respect. 

The Brotherhood is working with a range of community partners to call on the Australian Government to reinstate a safety net for people seeking asylum.  


Given the Chance - Money well spent

For every dollar spent on supporting an asylum seeker to find work, there is a $3 benefit. That is the conclusion of an independent analysis by auditors KPMG of the Brotherhood’s Given the Chance program.

Overall program benefits are more than $7 million. This benefit is shared between the Federal Government (in taxation revenue and reduced welfare payments) and program participants (via increased personal income).

Read the report and find out more in this short video.


Back Your Neighbour

The Brotherhood supports the Back Your Neighbour campaign, which seeks to reverse or mitigate the Australian Government’s cuts to Status Resolution Support Services for people seeking asylum in the community. Find out more.


The Brotherhood of St Laurence supports people seeking asylum.

The Brotherhood of St Laurence (BSL) acknowledges and understands its obligations under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and recognises that all children and young people have the right to be treated with respect and care, and to be safe from all forms of abuse. BSL has a zero tolerance towards child abuse.
Read the official statement signed by the Executive Director.

The Brotherhood recognises the harm that family violence causes and that freedom from violence is a basic human right.
We will support our staff, volunteers, clients and the community if they experience violence.

Find out more about the work of the Brotherhood
Australian Aboriginal flag, a yellow circle on two horizontal black and red stripes

The Brotherhood of St Laurence acknowledges and recognises the Traditional Owners of the land upon which we live and work, and we pay our respects to their Elders both past and present.

Torres Strait Islander flag, an icon of a traditional headdress on blue, black and green stripes