August 31, 2021

Update on the Afghanistan crisis

Spectrum continues to follow the evolving situation in Afghanistan and hold the people and communities impacted by the crisis in our thoughts. The situation is developing rapidly and is understandably a cause of considerable distress to many in Australia, particularly members of the Afghan community.

We are staying in touch with the Department of Home Affairs and our partners in the humanitarian settlement sector. The Australian Government has commenced expatriation operations and quarantine places over and above existing caps have been arranged with state governments for those on these flights.

For Afghan evacuees who are being repatriated to Australia

All Afghan evacuees will be offered support through the Humanitarian Support Program on their arrival in Australia. This includes Australian Citizens, humanitarian entrants and other visa holders.

Spectrum is ready to support the immediate settlement of those who are being evacuated.

If you are seeking information and support

Our Migration Team are receiving a lot of enquiries about this situation and we are doing all we can to provide updated information through our social media platforms and website.

If you are seeking information about how you can support someone to apply for a humanitarian visa, you may also contact the Department’s Global Service Centre – 131 881 or outside Australia +61 2 6196 0196 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm local time).

Have you lost contact with family in Afghanistan?

Australian Red Cross teams are helping people who have lost contact with family in Afghanistan. Because of the evolving situation, re-establishing contact may take some time, but ARC are urging anyone in Australia who has lost contact with relatives to please call our Restoring Family Links hotline on 1800 875 199 or via email at This information is also on ARC’s website and on Facebook in Dari and Pashtun:

Over many years, Spectrum has proudly supported refugees from Afghanistan to settle in Australia and we urge our Government to open Australia’s arms to the many in desperate need at this time. As the situation unfolds we are reaching out in support of our local Afghani community.

The Government has announced that an initial 3,000 humanitarian places will be allocated to Afghan nationals. Australia will give first priority to Afghan nationals within the offshore humanitarian program and afford them visa processing priority in the year ahead. The 3,000 humanitarian places will focus on family members of Australians, persecuted minorities such as women and girls, children, the Hazara and other vulnerable groups.

We will keep you informed as the situation evolves.