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Byron Shire
May 12, 2021

Refugee shame

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We would all have seen the news that a refugee has been killed while in detention and that the Department of Immigration has released personal details of thousands of refugees, thereby exposing them and their families back home to torture, imprisonment and murder.

In spite of the government’s attempts at secrecy, news is leaking out about a department in dysfunctional lockdown. Nothing is being processed properly. Department policy has led to hunger strikes, self harm, and imprisonment of over 1,000 children, which has caused the AMA to seek child protection charges against Minister Morrison. Over 20,000 poor souls are now in limbo with no hope of settlement or chance to go home.

Australia completely dishonours its responsibilities under the refugee treaties it signed and has become a sad joke among other democracies. Australia has the most vicious and draconian policies of all. This is while having the most capacity to accommodate unfortunate refugees.

Recent arrivals are given no assistance, legal aid, chance of work or hope of family reunion, and face forced repatriation. This is in spite the fact that over 90 per cent of arrivals are shown to be genuine refugees. Medical care has to come from the Red Cross.

Liberal policy is largely supported by Labor so it is the responsibility of the Greens and independent press, such as The  Echo, to keep us informed. Or are we to try, like postwar Germans, to pretend we didn’t know and hypocritically keep trying to believe in the Australian national anthem: ‘For those who’ve come across the seas/ We’ve boundless plains to share.’

Ron Priestley , Darwin


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  1. Well said Ron,
    Please, if you are able, come and join the protest rally on Friday night Feb 28th which has now been moved to Queens Park (Gardens) on the corner of Queen and George Street Brisbane at 5.30 pm. Please come and support the refugees and make it clear to the government that offshore detention and in particular Manus Island must be shut down immediately, and our UNHCR obligations should be honoured.

  2. Thanks Ron for taking the time to speak out on behalf of people with no rights and very little hope under this present government. Labor is culpable too – such a major re-think needed by both major parties and quite a few “Aussies” too.

  3. They’ve been in office 6 months, How long ’till the next election? How much more can they do to run a country into the ground. The refugee stories make me ashamed to call myself Australian. Of course when the elections get near there will be a whole lot of handouts & we (the public) will fall for it, terribly short memories………………………..


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