The Australian Government have announced exciting changes to the working holidaymaker programs. Backpackers on working holiday visas will be rewarded with a 2nd or 3rd year visa extension for heling with the bushfire recorvery effort.
Backpackers will be able to provide the much-needed assistance to help bushfire-affected communities throughout the country.
The definition of “specified work” will be revised to include disaster relief meaning that backpackers on a Work and Holiday Maker (subclass 462) visa or Working Holiday (subclass 417) visa will be able to count both paid or unpaid work in declared areas.
Paid or Unpaid work
To confirm, paid and volunteer disaster recovery work in Australia’s declared areas impacted in the recent bushfires will count towards the “specified work” needed to apply for a second or third year 417 or 462 visa.
Length of stay
The time a WHM can work with the same employer has been extended from six months to 12 months for those assisting with bushfire recovery efforts through a change in policy.
Acting Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs Alan Tudge commented;
“These hard-working Australians have been hit by the recent bushfires, but from today they can employ backpackers for six months longer, helping them at a critical time in the recovery effort,” Mr Tudge said
“It means working holiday makers can help rebuild homes, fences and farms, they can get onto properties and help with demolition, land clearing, and repairing dams, roads and railways.”
“This recovery will be driven locally, by local workers and communities. But this will be a massive recovery effort and we want businesses and charitable organisations to have as many boots on the ground as they need.”
Bushfire Recovery Jobs
In light of the governments news, Backpacker Job Board has launched a new disaster relief category to help backpackers find these vacancies speedily.
Likewise, farmers and residents of bushfire hit communities who are in need of help can post job vacancies to this new category and get in touch with backpackers ready and able to relocate to the most areas most in need of help.