An act of ‘shocking cruelty’ as govt defends decision to slash support for some asylum seekers

A move to cut support for up to 400 asylum seekers in the Australian community could be blocked by the Greens in the Senate and slammed by human rights lawyers.

A move to cut support for up to 400 asylum seekers in the Australian community could be blocked in the Senate and has been slammed by human rights lawyers.

The Human Rights Law Centre and Asylum Seeker Resource Centre say about 100 people will be immediately affected by the Turnbull government’s crackdown, but estimates the number could be as high as 400.

Greens leader Richard Di Natale said he was seeking advice on whether the Senate could block the instrument to create a new visa that would cut $200-a-fortnight payments and public housing for asylum seekers.

“We do call on members of the crossbench and the Labor Party to support us in doing everything we can to stop this unspeakably cruel act through the Senate,” Mr Di Natale told reporters in Melbourne.

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