The Group of Eight (Go8), Australia’s leading research-intensive universities, supports and understands the medical advice behind the Government’s decision today to yet again continue its travel ban.
The Government is clearly responding to increased numbers of cases in Australia and internationally and the Go8 will always support decisions that put the health of the Australian population first.
It is also important for the Go8 to restate that it has always held the strong position that it is not its place to request any lifting or partial lifting of this ban and has not attempted to do so. We know the Government is at all times acting on the latest and best possible medical advice.
Clearly the Go8, which continues to have almost 55,000 of its Chinese students unable to commence their 2020 study here in Australia, is extremely concerned for how those students are feeling. We know many feel vulnerable and unsure of their future at this point. The Go8 universities are in constant contact with their students in China and have teams continuing to work around the clock to ensure delivery of interim and tailored study solutions for them until this health situation is resolved.
The Go8 sees this sad issue as a student welfare issue first and foremost and that is already driving forward logistics and planning to how we can have our students move into their onshore study as quickly as possible when the ban is eventually lifted.