Exected change in recruitment policy on granting exemption of "Australian Citizenship" requirement for permanent residents in light of new immigration rules

Harpreet Singh Gill made this Freedom of Information request to Department of Defence

The request was successful.

From: Harpreet Singh Gill

Delivered

Dear Department of Defence,
I would like to make a request for information about any expected recruitment policy change for exemption of Australian citizenship requirement from current (1 year ) to more in light of new immigration rules to gain Australian citizenship to be enacted by the government. Currently, the department of defense offers 1 year maximum exemption to the permanent residents to gain Australian citizenship in order to complete their recruitment process as this was the time it takes to be eligible for Australian Citizenship for permanent residents. However, as the new immigration rules require at least 4 years for permanent residents to be eligible for Australian Citizenship, is there going to be any relaxation for permanent resident candidates who were half way through the process before the changes to the immigration rules announced?

Yours faithfully,
Harpreet Singh Gill

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From: FOI
Department of Defence

UNCLASSIFIED

Good morning

Thank you for your email. Your email has been forwarded for consideration/action.

Kind regards

FOI Operations
[email address]
(02) 6266 2200
http://www.defence.gov.au/foi/

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From: Hanna, Nicole MS
Department of Defence

UNCLASSIFIED

Good morning

Thank you for your email dated 13 June 2017. The Department of Defence has prepared the following response in relation to your request for information regarding "expected change in recruitment policy on granting exemption of "Australian Citizenship" requirement for permanent residents in light of new immigration rules".

This information has been released to you administratively outside of the Freedom of Information Act.

Q1. I would like to make a request for information about any expected recruitment policy change for exemption of Australian citizenship requirement from current (1 year ) to more in light of new immigration rules to gain Australian citizenship to be enacted by the government?

Australian citizenship is a requirement for entry to, and service in, the ADF. This policy is publicly available at: http://www.defence.gov.au/payandconditio....

For an application into the Australian Defence Force, there is no 'exemption' period to obtain citizenship; however, a reasonable timeframe to process an applicant through recruiting who does not already have citizenship might be around 12 months. This allows time for the applicant to obtain citizenship while maintaining the validity of other testing that may have been conducted during the recruiting process. After a period of 12 months, if an applicant has not obtained citizenship in that time, aspects of their initial application may need to be reconsidered due to changes over time.

Defence is unable to provide you with any information concerning a policy change or expected change as there is no extant policy that governs the application of any 'exemption'.

Q2. Currently, the department of defense (sic) offers 1 year maximum exemption to the permanent residents to gain Australian citizenship in order to complete their recruitment process as this was the time it takes to be eligible for Australian Citizenship for permanent residents?

Defence is not aware of the alleged exemption period stated in this question.

Currently, in exceptional circumstances if a position in the Australian Defence Force cannot be filled by an Australian citizen, the citizenship requirement may be waivered and applications may be accepted from:

A) Permanent residents who can prove they have applied for citizenship.
B) Permanent residents who are not yet eligible to apply for Australian citizenship as long as they apply for citizenship as soon as they become eligible.
C) Overseas applicants with relevant military service.

If a permanent resident's citizenship application is unsuccessful, their Australian Defence Force service will be terminated.

Q3. The new immigration rules require at least 4 years for permanent residents to be eligible for Australian Citizenship, is there going to be any relaxation for permanent resident candidates who were half way through the process before the changes to the immigration rules announced?

As any changes to immigration legislation are currently being considered by Government, Defence is unable to speculate at this time on what impact such changes might have on Defence policy.

If you require any further assistance please contact our office on (02)6266 2200.

Kind regards

FOI Operations
[email address]
(02) 6266 2200
http://www.defence.gov.au/foi/

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Verity Pane left an annotation ()

When making an FOI application, just note that, with the exception of s 17, you really need to request records/documents rather than information (which is one reason why Defence processed your request under administrative access arrangements). Therefore FOI requests generally need to be stated in terms of seeking documents held by an agency about something or someone.

s 93A FOI Guidelines

2.33 The right of access under the FOI Act is to existing documents, rather than to information. The FOI Act does not require an agency or minister to create a new document in response to a request for access, except in limited circumstances where the applicant seeks access in a different format or where the information is stored in an agency computer system rather than in discrete form (see Part 3 of these Guidelines). A request may nevertheless be framed by reference to a document that contains particular information.

For more information, you can review the s 93A FOI Guidelines here https://www.oaic.gov.au/freedom-of-infor...

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