Changes have been made to the application process for nominating a Minister of Religion for an employer sponsored visa.
Religious organisations who wish to bring Ministers of Religion to Australia on a temporary or permanent basis for employment must now do so via the available Ministers of Religion Industry Labour Agreement.
From 1 July 2015, the occupation of Minister of Religion (ANZSCO 272211) will be not be eligible for the Direct Entry Stream or Temporary Residence Transition stream of the Employer Nomination Scheme and the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme, or the Temporary Work (Skilled) Subclass 457 visa.
Rather, religious organisations must sign up to the Minister of Religion Industry Labour Agreement before lodging a nomination for the Agreements Stream of the Employer Nomination Scheme, or to become a sponsor for the Subclass 457 visa.
These changes will uphold the integrity of our employer sponsored visa programmes and continue supporting religious organisations to meet the spiritual needs of Australia’s multicultural society.
Under the changes that came into effect on 1 July 2015, Ministers of Religion will no longer be exempt from the age, skill and English language requirements that were available under the Direct Entry and Temporary Residence Transition streams.
All visa applications lodged on or after 1 July 2015 must meet the standard age, skill and English language requirements or meet one of the other exemption criteria. If an applicant is nominated for the Agreement stream, they must meet the requirements as outlined in the Minister of Religion Labour Agreement in order to be granted a visa.
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