6,000 Syrian and Iraqi refugees will be settled in one Sydney council

Photo: Christopher Furlong/ Getty.

Half of the 12,000 Syrian and Iraqi refugees coming to Australia under a special intake program will be settled in Fairfield City Council, 30km west of Sydney, within 12 months.

It comes after the council, which covers approximately 200,000 people, last year took on 3,000 humanitarian arrivals from the two countries.

But community leaders are asking for more federal government support to manage the settlement and social cohesion responsibilities needed with the unusually high intake, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

The unemployment rate in the area is consistently above 8%, much higher than the national figure at 5.6%.

In 2015, Australia announced a one-off intake of 12,000 refugees from Middle Eastern refugee camps, on top of the existing program of 13,750 for 2015-2016.

While politicians like New South Wales premier, Mike Baird, support such immigration, saying: “To shut our doors to refugees, as many here and around the world are calling for, is to deny our history, to deny our character,” immigration minister Peter Dutton says accepting more refugees would see them take Australian jobs or end up on social welfare because they are illiterate.

The SMH has more.

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