The privatisation of visa services threatens 100 jobs in Tasmania, as well as creating significant data security, privacy, and national security risks.
Senator Eric Abetz wrote the below letter into The Mercury on 19 July where he denies that visa services are being privatised and says there will be no losses to Tasmanian jobs.
Write a letter to the editor to raise your concerns with visa privatisation, and hold Sen. Abetz to his commitment that there will be no losses to Tassie jobs.
19 July The Mercury
Tips for writing a letter to the editor
Start by engaging the reader:
- Refer to a published article or another published letter
- Use a surprising statistic – ‘Did you know that 100 good jobs will disappear…’
- Use a catchy phrase – ‘Sen. Eric Abetz really hit the nail on the head in his article about…’
- React with emotion – ‘I was thrilled to read that…’
Using the ‘Problem - Solution’ format
- Stick to one issue – e.g. Job losses from cuts to dodgy multinationals; privatisation leads to worse services; backlog of visas processing should be solved by proper resourced system; outsourcing our visa system is a huge privacy concern.
The problem may have been stated in an article or letter, or you may need to expand on the issue.
- E.g. ‘Your article stated ___ but that is just the tip of the iceberg, with ___ accounting for 1,300 job losses in service centres across Tasmania
- Inform about solutions
- Be positive – 'Senator Abetz’ has been on the record about protecting jobs in Tasmania and he has a strong voice in his party
- Link to the call to action
How to increase chances of getting published
- Check the submission guidelines or tips for the newspaper
- Keep it short – less than 180 words
- Make it local: insert yourself, how it will affect you and your local community.
- Include your full name, address, and phone number
- Be respectful – never use bad language or insult someone
- Check your letter for spelling and grammar errors
- If emailing your letter, send it in the body of the email, not as an attachment
- Don't be afraid to ring to check if your letter has been received
- Put effort into an eye-catching subject line if you are emailing
- Look at the type of letters that get published in the paper already – do they tend to be long, short, controversial, intelligent?
- Make it unique; Include your own story and frame it around your experiences
Whether your letter gets published or not, we would love to know!
Make sure you keep an eye out for it, if it didn’t get published the following day, it could still be published a week later.
If you did get published, send a copy to your MP (and perhaps one to Senator Abetz as a thank you!).