Attitude towards Australia first hiring

May 12, 2020

Q. Last weekend Kristina Kenneally, a NSW senator, called for the federal government to reduce the number of temporary migrant worker visas permitted after the Covid-19 outbreak. She argues that Australian businesses should prioritise training and hiring Australians for roles, rather than seeking temporary workers to fill skill-shortages.

To what extent, do you support or oppose this idea of “Australia first” hiring?

    Gender Age Group
  Total Male Female 18-34 35-54 55+
Strongly support 41% 36% 46% 27% 42% 53%
Somewhat support 26% 28% 23% 25% 26% 25%
Neither support, nor oppose 21% 21% 21% 30% 24% 10%
Somewhat oppose 6% 7% 4% 10% 3% 5%
Strongly oppose 6% 8% 5% 9% 5% 6%
TOTAL: Support 67% 64% 70% 52% 68% 78%
TOTAL: Oppose 12% 15% 9% 18% 8% 12%
Base (n) 1,067 532 535 341 341 385

 

  Federal Voting Intention
Labor Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other
Strongly support 41% 44% 23% 61%
Somewhat support 22% 31% 26% 21%
Neither support, nor oppose 24% 15% 34% 12%
Somewhat oppose 7% 4% 7% 4%
Strongly oppose 6% 5% 10% 2%
TOTAL: Support 63% 75% 50% 82%
TOTAL: Oppose 13% 10% 17% 7%
Base (n) 306 418 86 143
  • Kristina Kenneally’s “Australia first” hiring approach is supported by 67% of participants; women (70%), those over 55 (78%), Coalition (75%) and other party voters (82%) are more likely to support this approach than men (64%), 18-34 year olds (52%) and Greens voters (50%).

Attitudes towards Temporary Migrants

May 12, 2020

Q. Temporary migrants include people on skilled worker visas (which are used to cover jobs where there are skill shortages including engineers, nurses and scientists), most New Zealand citizens living in Australia, and international students.

To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statements?

  TOTAL: Agree TOTAL: Disagree Strongly agree Somewhat agree Neither agree, nor disagree Somewhat disagree Strongly disagree Don’t know
Temporary migrants support the economy by spending their money in Australia 57% 17% 19% 39% 23% 12% 5% 3%
Businesses should hire Australian citizens where they can, even if they’re not as skilled as candidates who are temporary migrants 54% 21% 26% 28% 22% 13% 8% 3%
If temporary migrants pay the same taxes as Australian citizens, they should be entitled to the same government support 52% 20% 21% 31% 24% 11% 9% 4%
It’s realistic to expect temporary residents who lose work in Australia to go back to their home countries 52% 20% 21% 31% 24% 13% 7% 4%
Without temporary migrants, Australia would face skill shortages 48% 23% 15% 33% 24% 12% 11% 5%
Australia would be better off if we had fewer temporary migrants 41% 27% 18% 23% 28% 14% 12% 4%

 

TOTAL: Agree   Employment Status Federal Voting Intention
Total In paid employment Not in paid employment Retired Labor Coalition Greens TOTAL: Other
Temporary migrants support the economy by spending their money in Australia 57% 60% 51% 64% 59% 62% 56% 50%
Businesses should hire Australian citizens where they can, even if they’re not as skilled as candidates who are temporary migrants 54% 53% 46% 67% 50% 61% 40% 75%
If temporary migrants pay the same taxes as Australian citizens, they should be entitled to the same government support 52% 57% 48% 52% 56% 51% 55% 51%
It’s realistic to expect temporary residents who lose work in Australia to go back to their home countries 52% 52% 44% 63% 51% 59% 32% 65%
Without temporary migrants, Australia would face skill shortages 48% 51% 47% 48% 48% 57% 45% 34%
Australia would be better off if we had fewer temporary migrants 41% 43% 31% 52% 41% 46% 22% 57%
Base (n) 1,067 550 254 212 306 418 86 143
  • More than half of participants agree with any of the statements about temporary migrants – except without temporary migrants, Australia would face skill shortages (48%) and Australia would be better off if we had fewer temporary migrants (41%).
  • Retirees are more likely to agree that businesses should hire Australian citizens where they can, even if they’re not as skilled as candidates who are temporary migrants (67%), Australia would be better off if we had fewer temporary migrants (52%) and it’s realistic to expect temporary residents who lose work in Australia to go back to their home countries (63%) than other participants (51%, 39% and 49% respectively).
  • Similarly other or independent party voters are most likely to agree that businesses should hire Australian citizens where they can, even if they’re not as skilled as candidates who are temporary migrants (75% v 55% all other voters) and Australia would be better off if we had fewer temporary migrants (57% v 41% all other voters).
  • Coalition most likely to agree without temporary migrants, Australia would face skill shortages (57% v 44% all other voters).
  • Greens voters are least likely to agree that businesses should hire Australian citizens where they can, even if they’re not as skilled as candidates who are temporary migrants (40% v 59% all other voters), Australia would be better off if we had fewer temporary migrants (22% v 45% all other voters) and it’s realistic to expect temporary residents who lose work in Australia to go back to their home countries (32% v 57% all other voters).
  • Participants who support Kristina Kenneally’s “Australia first” approach more likely to agree that businesses should hire Australian citizens where they can, even if they’re not as skilled as candidates who are temporary migrants (68%) and Australia would be better off if we had fewer temporary migrants (52%).

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