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A new international agreement will boost Australia’s ability to detect and identify immigration fraud and cast a wider net when checking the backgrounds of unauthorised arrivals and other people held in immigration detention.

The Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Senator Chris Evans, said today that an agreement for biometric data-sharing between Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom was signed last night. Under the partnership, Australia will be able to securely and confidentially cross check fingerprints with Canadian and UK databases.

Currently, the Department of Immigration and Citizenship collects fingerprints from all people in immigration detention, including irregular arrivals and illegal foreign fishers. It is expected fingerprint collection will be progressively rolled out to other people in the immigration caseload in the future.

‘The Australian Government’s ability to detect immigration and identity fraud will be greatly improved as a result of new biometric data-sharing arrangements with partner agencies in Canada and the United Kingdom,’ Senator Evans said. ‘This data-sharing will help to establish the true identities of unknown people, and ensure that fraudulent cases are dealt with appropriately through the improved ability to detect inconsistent identity and immigration claims.

It will also help authorities to increase the chance of detecting people with criminal histories and other people of concern, aid in the timely removal of unlawful non-citizens where their identities and/or nationalities were previously unknown or uncertain, and improve detection of fraudulent immigration practices and trends.

The new biometric data-sharing plan was developed at the Five Country Conference, which is a forum on immigration and border security between Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States. The US is expected to join the data-sharing arrangement in due course.

The benefits of international biometric data sharing were highlighted recently when an individual claiming asylum in the UK was found to have previously been fingerprinted in the USA while travelling on an Australian passport.

The individual was subsequently confirmed as an Australian citizen wanted for sexual assault. The man was removed to Australia to face court, and is now serving a jail sentence.

Senator Evans said the new data-sharing arrangements would not affect privacy laws.

‘The protection of personal information is important to all the countries involved in these arrangements. All data shared by my department will adhere to the Privacy Act 1988,’ the minister said.

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Migration agents operating in Australia are required by law to be registered with the Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (Office of the MARA).

Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (Office of the MARA)

Prior to 1 July 2009, the MIA acted as the MARA under a Deed of Agreement between the MIA and the department. The 2007-08 Review of Statutory Self-Regulation of the Migration Advice Profession, which was undertaken to assess the effectiveness of the regulatory scheme, recommended that the government consider establishing a regulatory body separate from the MIA.

In response to the review recommendation, the Minister announced the establishment of the Office of the MARA as a discrete office attached to the department and headed by a specifically designated senior officer solely responsible for Office of the MARA activities. The new body is located in Sydney and assumed functions from the MIA from 1 July 2009.

The Office of the MARA is supported by a representative advisory board, which includes a nominee from the MIA, a nominee from the Law Council of Australia, a consumer advocate and a community representative.

The Office of the MARA undertakes a range of functions including:

  • processing registration and re-registration applications
  • administering the profession’s entrance exam and continuing professional development program
  • monitoring the conduct of registered migration agents
  • investigating complaints about registered migration agents
  • taking appropriate disciplinary action against registered migration agents who breach the migration agents Code of Conduct or otherwise behave in an unprofessional or unethical way.

See: Office of the MARA website

Source  :  http://www.immi.gov.au/gateways/agents/regulation-of-advice-profession.htm

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One of the biggest mistakes new migrants make when attempting to enter into the Australian job market is sticking with the resume from their country of origin.

It is absolutely crucial that newly arrived jobseekers tailor their resumes towards Australian employers. Lisa LaRue of CareerWorx Careers & Transitions specialises in adapting overseas resumes for the Australian job market.

Ms LaRue says: “A lot of migrant jobseekers contact me for help when they have been unable to find work for months after arriving in Australia. The first thing I ask them to do is email me their resume”.

She said some of the most common errors she sees are spelling and grammatical mistakes. Another mistake is including obsolete information or detail which has no relevance to an Australian employer.

“Many contain too much personal information which is a major faux pas in an Australian environment,” added Ms LaRue. She pointed out that Australian labour market law prohibits employers from discriminating against certain job seekers.

“There is no need to divulge your marital status, age or religion in your resume,” Ms LaRue said, “unless you are applying for a teaching position at a religious school, it is not necessary to inform your potential employer of your religious beliefs”.

Although employers are prohibited from discriminating against job seekers, it would be naïve to assume that all employers adhere to the law all of the time. With this in mind, it is best not to mention your age in your resume or cover letter. There is always the possibility that you could be discriminated against should the employer feel you are too young or too old for the position.

Migrant job seekers should also ensure that their qualifications will be accepted by Australian employers. Overseas qualifications need to be recognised by the appropriate body for them to carry weight within the Australian job market. Information about having your qualifications recognised can be found at www.immi.gov.au/asri/

It is a good idea to have your resume appraised by someone in Australia to ensure that it is easily understood and appeals to Australian employers. CareerWorx offers a migrant employment assistance service including resume tailoring and assistance with job search skills.

 Visit  :   www.careerworx.com.au for further information. 

 Source  :  www.careerone.com.au

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