Deported Kiwis' 'lives turned upside down'

  • 14/09/2015
Angela Russell is being sent back shortly
Angela Russell is being sent back shortly

An advocacy group is speaking out about the plight of New Zealanders who are being deported from Australia.

A recent law change has seen the number of deportations triple, and many are being kicked out for relatively minor offences such as theft.

Forty-year-old Angela Russell is being sent back shortly, even though she has two Australian children and hasn't lived in New Zealand since she was three.

Joanne Cox from Oz Kiwi says it's incredibly unfair.

"For those who grew up here and have their lives here, to be sent back to New Zealand is a double jeopardy for them," she says. "They don't have the support system in the family in New Zealand that they do here."

Ms Cox says Ms Russell's is just one of more than 100 cases this year alone. Every day she is being contacted by distressed families who face being separated from a loved one.

She's recently been contacted by a New Zealander who is about to be deported even though he has a one-year-old daughter who is an Australian citizen.

"He was sentenced to 12 months in prison. He's about to be released and has been told he's going to be deported back to New Zealand. So at quite short notice their lives have just been turned upside down.

"Families are contacting us to say that their son is in prison, or their partner is in prison, and of course Oz Kiwi is one of the key bodies in Australia for New Zealanders. We're getting more cases all the time."

Almost 200 New Zealanders are currently being held in Australian detention centres facing deportation and hundreds more have had their visas cancelled.

RadioLIVE / 3 News