New Zealanders caught by Australian laws excluding most from social welfare, higher education and access to permanent residency are increasingly becoming guest workers paying full tax but with few rights.
Australian critics of the policies warn that the nation is creating a permanent underclass of expatriate Kiwis, losing significant human and economic potential while storing up major social problems, including poverty and rising crime rates.
Victoria University senior lecturer Kate McMillan said most New Zealanders might see their access to Australia only as an opportunity - without realising the potential pitfalls.
Most Kiwis in Australia have no safety nets in case of injury or misfortune. They have little chance of gaining full rights or citizenship however long they might live there.
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