Ten aged care facilities have submitted a petition to the Federal Minister for Health and Aging, Mark Butler, and the Minister for Immigration, Chris Bowen. It aims at helping them overcome a severe shortage of workers who can communicate with their residents. They want European language skills included as a criterion for 457 temporary work visas.

Caring for the elderly is a challenging job at the best of times, but imagine not being able to communicate with the people you are trying to help.This is situation facing ethno-specific aged care facilities who are struggling to find staff who can speak the language of ther residents.Kathy Eberl is the CEO of Saint Hedwig’s Village, an aged care facility providing service for German-speaking rpeople.She says in the 80s and 90s the government encouraged the opening of ethno-specific aged care facilities.

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