Government refuses to release refugee report

The Morrison Government has been sitting on an important report into the settlement of refugees and migrants for nine months.

The Shergold review, written by respected former public servant and Western Sydney University Chancellor Peter Shergold, was delivered to the government in February.

But still it is are refusing to release it, saying it was still before Cabinet. It is expected to be released in full, but no date has been given.

A spokeswoman for Immigration Minister David Coleman said the government was "finalising its response to the Shergold review".

"The report will be released along with the government's response,'' she said.

It's thought the report has been squirrelled away because it contains criticism of the government's settlement practices for refugees.

The Morrison Government has not yet set a date for release of the report.
The Morrison Government has not yet set a date for release of the report.

Professor Shergold, a former head of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, fast-tracked the report late last year after a string of meetings with key stakeholders.

Labor's multicultural affairs spokesman Andrew Giles said it was "extraordinary that the report the government has had since February has not been made public".

"What is in it that the government doesn't want people to see?" he said.

Mr Giles said the government's refusal to release the ­report came at a time when ministers were pressing for more migrants to move to ­regional areas.

"They're being very secretive about it. Australians have the right to know what the ­report says,'' he said.

"It was commissioned with some urgency last year, from a very senior public servant. We know nothing about it.''

MORE NEWS:

VICTORIANS BRACE FOR HOTTEST OCTOBER DAY SINCE 1940

VIOLENCE ERUPTS AS ANTI-COAL PROTEST CONTINUES

Prof Shergold provided recommendations on how the government could improve settlement, integration and employment outcomes for refugees.

NSW Premier Gladys ­Berejiklian also hired Prof Shergold last year to develop a population policy for her government as it struggled to meet a promise to reduce that state's migrant intake.

She has refused to release the report, despite saying at the time it would be used to "help develop a population policy for NSW".

ellen.whinnett@news.com.au