In this section
Status resolution support services (SRSS) is a program providing supports to non-citizens as their immigration status is resolved. SRSS provides six levels (bands) of support:
In 2014, SRSS replaced the previous CAS – Community Assistance Support (established 2005, changed to band 5) and ASAS – Asylum Seeker Assistance Scheme (established 1992, changed to band 6) - see Department of Human Services information (which includes links to application forms) and 2018 policy manual (and the older 2017 policy manual and 2014 policy manual). Most (but not all) people on SRSS are individuals who arrived by boat and sought asylum and are in the community on a bridging visa E (BVE).
From 2017, access to SRSS decreased for asylum seekers in the community on BVE. SRSS access stops if an asylum seeker:
Clinicians should ensure SRSS providers and the DHA are aware of health status (with consent) to ensure accurate assessment of vulnerability by the DHA.
SRSS also applies for the cohort in community detention (band 3). For this group, SRSS stops if they transition to a final departure BVE (FDBVE) within a period of weeks. In August 2018 - this was one week for the first cohort to be granted a FDBVE (adults who arrived alone) and at that time was 4-6 weeks for families with children. These individuals have not had work rights since arrival in Australia (now 7 years), and our clinical experience is that they may be substantially unwell. For this group - clinicians should ensure International Health and Medical Services (IHMS), SRSS providers and the DHA are aware of health status (with consent) to ensure accurate assessment of vulnerability by the DHA. Timelines may be urgent where loss of SRSS support/payments poses immediate health and safety risk.
If loss of SRSS support payments poses immediate health and safety risks, and/or imminent destitution there are a number of supports and pathways available.
The Victorian government has provided support packages for this group - in both 2017 and also 2019-2020. The following list provides immediate connections for clinicians to find support, more comprehensive mapping is pending through the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre (ASRC) and the Refugee Council of Australia, and will be updated when available. Please also see Covid resources
Individuals may re-apply for SRSS if their circumstances change - see DHA form 1445 (to get onto the program) and also Department of Social Services (DSS) information - this can also be used to apply for Medicare). If there are immediate concerns, the DHA advice is to contact service providers - see DHA list of service providers (and SRSS contact details below). It is not clear that this applies to people who are transitioned to a FDBVE.
Immigrant health clinic resources, updated October 2020, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org