|28 Mar 2012|
|My name is Megan and my husbands name is Aaron. We have four kids aged 7, almost 6, 3 and almost 5 months. We live in the United States, more specifically Washington State. After I chose our username I realized that WA could stand for Western Australia but in our case it stands for Washington!|
We are in our mid thirties and we are actually both Dental Hygienists but I haven't practiced in a few years as I stay home with our children.
I lived in Penrith, NSW in 1992 and my husband and I have always dreamed of moving to Australia at some point in our lives. The desire comes from a lot of factors such as a general unhappiness with the way the States government works, a hectic life, etc. We adore our current president (Obama) but, well, I don't think I need to explain myself to anyone from other countries as to WHY we don't necessarily like how our country behaves itself.
I love this site and have spent hours and hours reading everyones blogs. It seems that the traffic here has really slowed down over the past two years and I haven't seen any other Americans posting. But I thank you all for your posts as they have a lot of good information and really reminded me how emotional an international move can be.
We started really researching a move down under about a year ago and even more intensly in the last few months. We are fairly certain we would be granted Permanent Residency if we applied but unfortunately Australia has dropped the ball when it comes to my husbands profession. They have made it way too difficult with hygienists being regulated by the wrong people-VETASSES instead of the Australian Dental Council. Dentists only have to go through the ADC, as they should. But hygienists have to first have a skills assessment through Vetasses and then they have to do exactly the same thing with the ADC and they have to pay for it twice. We have called Vetasses and when my husband asked them what he should do with the results of his skill assessment the gal answered, 'Well, whatever you like'. Ummmm.
So basically this is what we would have to do:
1. Apply with VETASSES and pay the $900 fee and wait.
2. Once we get the results then we would apply for our Visa and pay the $3000.
3. Then he has to apply with the ADC to get clearance to jump through the hoops to apply for registration and do exactly what he had to do for Vetasses and pay AGAIN.
3. If we are granted a Visa, then we have to have my husband sit for a written board exam in Seattle (thankfully they offer the written part here) and pay the $2000 fee.
4. If he passes that, then he has to sit for the practical exam in Adelaide and pay the $4000 fee.
5. If he passes that he has to pay for his registration and wait for it to be issued.
6. Then he would job hunt.
Our problem with the whole thing is that there is not only a lot of money involved there are also a lot of steps and none of it guarantees that we will actually be successful in gaining his registration. And no one in Australia seems to be able to answer our questions, in fact, the Australian Dental Council has no idea who Vetasses is and why they are involved.
Not to mention that my husband has already taken board exams - written, practical including anesthesia and restorative. Hygiene was created here in the States and our education is at least equal to that of Australia's hygiene education. There is absolutely no need for him to take these board exams - Vetasses and the ADC already require that he provide records of all of his education, board exam results, work experience, etc. We don't doubt that he would pass all of the board exams but we can't afford to fly him down there to take a board exam since he would have to have time to recover from jet lag before the exam, miss a week of work, then come back and have to recover from jet lag again. And, everthing is harder when there are kids involved!
So, long story short, we feel like our dreams have been dashed. We are disappointed and angry but that is all part of the grieving process I guess.
Maybe someday soon Australia will realize the problem they have created and fix it and we can try again. Until then I will just have to try to stop envisioning my kids walking to school in there uniforms in the morning sun with the beautiful tropical birds flying overhead. And let go of my dreams of weekends spent on the beach and BBQing with neighbors.
That's all for now...my baby just woke up from a very short nap...