Refugees on temporary visas have celebrated the election result, in anticipation they will soon be able to call Australia their permanent home.
While the major parties promoted similar border policies during the campaign, Labor pledged to grant permanent visas to more than 19,000 refugees already in Australia who must otherwise keep reapplying to stay. Temporary visas allow them to work, but prohibit them from bringing family members to Australia.
Afghan refugee Nimat Nazari, a member of the persecuted Hazara community, said he could now sleep soundly.
"I am very happy now; I hope my tension and uncertainty will be over soon," said Mr Nazari, who has been on temporary arrangements for more than a decade.
"There are many people (like me) who have uncertain lives. A hope exists now that we will have a future here."
While the coalition had pledged not to send Afghans living in Australia back while the security situation remained dire, their long-term place in Australia was not assured.
There are more than 5000 Afghan asylum-seekers and refugees in Australia placed in temporary arrangements after arriving by boat.
The Taliban surged back to power in Afghanistan last year after two decades of fighting, prompting an unprecedented number of visa applications from individuals seeking resettlement.
Abdul Rezai, a 56-year-old who has been on temporary arrangements since 2012, said a permanent visa would allow him to bring his family to Australia.
"My daughter was four years old when I fled. Now she is 14 years old; I did not see her grow up," he said.
"I have not been with my family all these years. I visited them only once."
Mr Rezai, a bricklayer, said he had helped build Australia.
"For the past ten years, I have worked alongside Australian people. I paid tax. During the bushfire, I went to regional areas and volunteered to rebuild homes and farms ravaged by the fire," he said.
"We expect from the new government to escalate our application and to get rid of the tension we endured for a long time."
Paul Power, chief executive of the Refugee Council of Australia, said in a letter to Prime Minister Anthony Albanese on Monday that he was looking forward to the government fulfilling its visa promises.
"Your pledge on election night to work towards building a nation in which no one is left behind and no one is held back gives greater hope to many Australians that we can collectively work towards building a fairer and more compassionate society," Mr Power said.
Australian Associated Press
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.