Australia asks backpackers to leave in corona-induced U-turn

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Discussion posted by: Arye ben-Shaoul

Visitors to Australia on work visas are being asked to leave if they cannot provide for themselves amid an economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Speaking on Saturday, Acting Immigration Minister Alan Tudge said if any of these working holidaymakers did not “have the confidence to sustain themselves over the next six months, they should leave the country.” Some of the altogether 118,000 backpackers in the country could, however, have their visas extended if they are working in certain sectors, including health care. The request to all of the more than 2 million people currently on temporary visas in Australia to consider returning home if they lacked means of support contrasts strongly with recent appeals not to shy away from visiting the country because of the massive bushfires there.