Immigration officers 'cut corners'
Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Claims that immigration officers have been cutting corners when dealing with applications will be investigated by Auditor-General Kevin Brady, it was reported today.

Mr Brady is carrying out a wide-ranging inquiry into the service after being called in by the Government following a series of scandals and the resignation of its head, Mary Anne Thompson.

An anonymous letter, claiming to be from an immigration officer, says managers have been pushing staff to complete target numbers of applications even if they involve false information, Radio New Zealand reported.

The Labour Department, which is responsible for the service, confirmed that the claims in the letter would be part of Mr Brady's inquiry.

Public Service Association secretary Brenda Pilott said she had talked to at least two immigration officers who had said the same thing.

"They say staff have very hard targets to meet and that there aren't really enough staff to be able to do the job properly, so corners are being cut and immigration applications are being pushed through, perhaps without due consideration," she said.

- NZPA

From here.