10 August 2010

Australian Citizenship call for long term residents

The Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) and Bathurst Regional Council have partnered to encourage local residents to take up Australian citizenship.

A departmental spokesman said DIAC wanted to encourage more migrants to take up Australian citizenship, especially people who had lived in Australia a long time but never taken the final step.

“Citizenship is not just a chance to belong, but an opportunity to fully participate in the Australian community,” the spokesman said.

“As an Australian citizen, you enjoy its democratic freedoms, such as freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of choice across all areas of life, such as politics, religion and education. You also enjoy Australia’s protection under national and international laws.

“The benefits of citizenship include the right to vote, the right to stand for political office, the chance of a career in the Australian Defence Force and the opportunity to be employed by federal and state government departments and agencies.

Bathurst residents will also not have to make the trip to Sydney as DIAC officers will travel to Bathurst later this year to conduct the compulsory citizenship tests.

If local residents take advantage of the department’s offer and to apply before the end of August they will be able to take the test in Bathurst later this year and then have the rare chance to participate in a citizenship ceremony on Australia Day.

The Australian Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people lodge their Australian Visa application  at the Australian Embassy.   

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