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SBS Punjabi News 8 Oct: Alan Tudge gives details about new English language requirement for partner visas

Acting Immigration Minister Alan Tudge at Parliament House in Canberra Source: AAP

In tonight’s SBS Punjabi news bulletin, hear the latest from around the nation about COVID-19 cases, Acting Immigration Minister Alan Tudge clarifies the new English language requirements for partner visa applicants, the Senate passes the contentious higher education bill while Donald Trump vows to make an experimental and unproven anti-viral drug free for all Americans.

In tonight's headlines:

**Investigations continue into the source of three mystery coronavirus cases in New South Wales... 

** New migrants who can demonstrate a reasonable effort to learn English won't have their application for a permanent partner visa rejected…. 

**The Senate passes the coalition's contentious higher education bill... 

And 

** Donald Trump vows to make an experimental and unproven  anti-viral free for all Americans

Acting Immigration Minister Alan Tudge says new migrants who can demonstrate a reasonable effort to learn English won't have their application for a permanent partner visa rejected. 

From late next year (2021), those applying for a permanent partner visa will be required to show a functional level of English or prove they've undertaken 500 hours of free language classes. 

Mr Tudge says while reaching the necessary standard of English proficiency might prove challenging for some people, the government wants them to at least try. He says it will give migrants a better chance of getting a job and fully integrating into Australian life. 

"For most people it will be 500 hours, and that will get people to a certain level of English. For some people, they may need a lot more hours to get to a basic level, but that won't be the requirement. What will be required is just a demonstration that they've made those reasonable efforts, and it will be defined by in the vicinity of 500 hours," he said. 

The coalition's contentious higher education bill has passed the Senate, effectively guaranteeing it will become law. The legislation will more than double the cost of humanities courses from 2021, while making degrees in disciplines such as science, maths, and engineering cheaper. 

The changes will also see university students who fail more than half their subjects lose access to government support. The bill will now go back to the House of Representatives, where the Coalition has enough votes to ensure it passes. 

People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 metres away from others. Find out what restrictions are in place for your state or territory.

Testing for coronavirus is now widely available across Australia. If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080.
The federal government's coronavirus tracing app COVIDSafe is available for download from your phone's app store.

SBS is committed to informing Australia’s diverse communities about the latest COVID-19 developments. News and information is available in 63 languages at http://www.sbs.com.au/coronavirus

Listen to SBS Punjabi Monday to Friday at 9 pm. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

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