As part of its lockdown, Australia has banned entry to everyone other than citizens, and compelled returning citizens to quarantine for 14 days in a hotel before going home.
Now Kristina Kenneally, immigration spokesperson of the opposition Labor Party, has picked up on that to call for the conservative government to put tighter permanent curbs on immigration. “Do we want migrants to return to Australia in the same numbers and in the same composition as before the crisis? Our answer should be no”.
Some Labor MPs have complained that Kenneally was freelancing, or finessed the question by talking of a cut in temporary work visas and an increase in permanent migration.
As we must be on guard against lockdown rules becoming permanent curbs on civil liberties, so also against them becoming permanent higher barriers to migration.