Geelong Advertiser

REFUGEE DAD GETS TO STAY

- GREG DUNDAS

A SIMPLE letter has saved the life of Lara resident Eric Isulat and given his family hope for the future.

From the Philippine­s, Mr Isulat, his wife, Nerissa, and children Christine, Angelica, Jian, Abigael, Germain and Cedric were celebratin­g last night after being told their applicatio­n for permanent Australian residency had finally been granted.

The news was delivered by Corangamit­e MP Sarah Henderson on behalf of Immigratio­n Minister Peter Dutton and assistant minister Michaelia Cash, and was greeted with hugs and tears.

Mr Isulat has type two diabetes and spends nine hours each day on dialysis, but with permanent residency will now go on the final waiting list for a lifesaving kidney transplant.

The Government’s decision also opens the possibilit­y his oldest children can go to university.

“These are the most important things; the opportunit­y to have a transplant and the education for the children,” he said.

“We don’t have to worry any more that we will be sent back home.”

Ms Cash intervened after the Migration Review Tribunal twice rejected Mr Isulat’s applicatio­n for permanent residency.

The first rejection came in 2012, a month after Mr Isulat, an aircraft maintenanc­e engineer, was made redundant from his job at Avalon Airport.

Ms Henderson said delivering the happy news to the family was one of the joys of her job.

“This decision reflects our Government’s focus on these important values,” she said.

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 ?? Picture: MIKE DUGDALE ?? TIGHT: Eric Isulat celebrates with his family and MP Sarah Henderson yesterday.
Picture: MIKE DUGDALE TIGHT: Eric Isulat celebrates with his family and MP Sarah Henderson yesterday.

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