Tag Archives: asylum seekers

CHRIS SIDOTI. 30th Anniversary of the Australian Human Rights Commission. Part 2 of 2.

Human rights work has a cost, and we need to remember the cost and the toll that it takes on the people who are doing it. Those who are paying the price need the support of those who are not … Continue reading

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I am ashamed to be Australian.

I decided to become a photojournalist to help refugees tell their stories, and to show their plight.  I was stunned by the lack of compassion and the outright racism I saw in my countrymen.  I was angry as only a … Continue reading

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FRANK BRENNAN SJ. Dog-whistling again on asylum seekers.

  Labor has decided not to support the Turnbull government’s latest asylum bill which was announced in a most hamfisted way on the Sunday morning before last, and which contains very unacceptable overreach measures. So now it will be a … Continue reading

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JOHN NIEUWENHUYSEN. How Australian Political Leaders Can Abandon and Mistreat Asylum Seekers

  Living as a White youth in apartheid South Africa in the 1950’s, I often wondered how it was possible for a small minority to dominate and oppress the large majority of the population who were denied the vote because … Continue reading

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ROBERT MANNE. How we came to be so cruel to asylum seekers.

This is an edited extract of a talk delivered to the Integrity 20 Conference at Griffith University on October 25, 2016 If you had been told 30 years ago that Australia would create the least asylum seeker friendly institutional arrangements … Continue reading

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JAMES ROSE. From Tampa to now: how reporting on asylum seekers has been a triumph of spin over substance.

  Spin designed to dehumanise and demonise asylum seekers. This year marks the 15th anniversary of one of the most divisive national election campaigns in Australia’s recent history: the Tampa affair. Coming just weeks after the September 11 terror attacks, … Continue reading

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TRAVERS McLEOD, PETER HUGHES, SRIPRAPHA PETCHARAMESREE, STEVEN WONG, TRI NUKE PUDJIASTUTI. Developing a regional refugee framework.

September has seen a surge of international summits. First came the G20 in Hangzhou, then ASEAN and the East Asia Summit in Vientiane, plus the Pacific Islands Forum in Pohnpei. And, on consecutive days this week, the United Nations in … Continue reading

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Nauru and the Philippines

Three days ago, on 6 October, I posted a story ‘Nauru and the Philippines‘. That story carried an unconfirmed report that the Australian government was negotiating with the Philippines government for the transfer of 600 asylum seekers in Nauru to … Continue reading

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Kenneth Roth. The European refugee crisis is on of politics not capacity.

European leaders may differ about how to respond to the asylum-seekers and migrants surging their way, but they seem to agree they face a crisis of enormous proportions. Germany’s Angela Merkel has called it “the biggest challenge I have seen in European … Continue reading

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Dennis Altman. Two years in – even supporters despair of Abbott’s feeble government.

The Abbott government marks its two-year anniversary of winning office today, September 7. I was tempted to begin by claiming that Tony Abbott has established himself as one of Australia’s more successful prime ministers, but I struggled to find a … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Why are we so cruel? The problem starts at the top.

The news out of Manus and particularly Nauru shows how callous we have become. It is not that we are always as cold-hearted as this. The response to the attacks on Adam Goodes and the murder of an AFL football … Continue reading

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Safdar Ahmed. A moving inside story about detainees in the Villawood Detention Centre.

Safdar Ahmed has sent to me a very moving and powerful online comic book about life in the Villawood detention centre. The press release which he issued, follows.  John Menadue A new graphic novel depicts life inside the Villawood Detention … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Mother Merkel and 800,000 refugees

In September last year I posted an article about the Heroism of Angela Merkel in her generous response to asylum seekers arriving in Germany. She is holding to her course but the difficulties are increasing. The attacks on women in … Continue reading

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Tony Smith. Baird’s risk on asylum seekers

When New South Wales Premier Michael Baird told an Australia Day luncheon that we should be more accepting of asylum seekers, he was taking quite a risk. Baird’s federal Liberal Party colleagues have espoused the hard policy of stopping the … Continue reading

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Robert Manne. “When the facts change I change my mind. What do you do, Sir.” JM Keynes

You might be interested in this repost. John Menadue.   I have been a supporter of refugee rights since the mid-1970s, when with others I formed the Indo-China Refugee Association. During the period of the Howard government I wrote tens … Continue reading

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Hugh Mackay. Does every moral lapse make the next one easier?

The political decline of the Abbott government has been remarkable. No other federal government in recent history has fallen from favour so soon after an election, nor languished in the polls so intractably (consistently trailling Labor 47-53 for more than … Continue reading

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John Menadue. Refugees and asylum seekers..a re-think on Temporary Protection Visas.

I have long argued that Temporary Protection Visas (TPVs) should be rejected on the grounds that they don’t deter asylum seekers, people are left in limbo and because TPV holders could not sponsor family which resulted in risky boat journeys … Continue reading

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Bob Douglas and Claire Higgins. Beyond Operation Sovereign Borders.

Recently in The Saturday Paper Max Opray reported on the harrowing story of two 16 year-old Vietnamese asylum seekers, who have been removed from their Adelaide school without warning, and placed in closed detention in Darwin. The boys are among around … Continue reading

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Tony Smith. Singing out for asylum seekers.

Recent poll results that show rising support for the Abbott Government’s approach to border security are disturbing even if not entirely surprising. Asylum seekers have been detained offshore, out of general sight and conveniently out of mind for those Australians … Continue reading

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Kerry Murphy. To Kill a Mockingbird and 2014.

Mark Twain is quoted as saying that history does not repeat itself, but it does rhyme.  I was reminded of this when seeing the excellent production of To Kill a Mockingbird at the New Theatre in Newtown, Sydney last week. … Continue reading

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Israel’s asylum-seeker dilemma. Guest blogger: John Tulloh.

Like Australia, Israel has a major problem of what to do with asylum-seekers. And, like Australia with our proposed Malaysia solution in 2011, Israeli legislation aimed at curbing the influx has been thrown out by the country’s highest court. Those … Continue reading

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Asylum seekers are blocking the M4 freeway and clogging up our hospitals! John Menadue

On Monday night on 4 Corners, the Liberal candidate for Lindsay, Fiona Scott, said that asylum seekers’ cars were blocking the M4 highway. For readers outside Sydney, the M4 is a 40 km expressway connecting Concord and Penrith. I don’t … Continue reading

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From one Catholic to another. Guest blogger: Bishop Hurley, Darwin.

​The Catholic Bishop of Darwin has expressed concern to Tony Abbott about the Coalition’s policies towards asylum-seekers and people in detention.  His letter to Tony Abbott follows:   Bishop Hurley letter to Tony Abbott The Leader of the Opposition The … Continue reading

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Jesuit students rebuke Tony Abbott and other old boys. John Menadue

For many years, I have been concerned that the Jesuits at St Ignatius College Sydney seem to be producing mainly conservative politicians and merchant bankers. I don’t think St Ignatius would have expected that. My confidence in the Jesuits at … Continue reading

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Asylum seekers. Don’t let us be diverted from regional arrangements. John Menadue

Foreign Minister Carr is focusing on whether some asylum seekers are refugees or economic migrants. This is symptomatic of a government that is continually in crisis mode over boat arrivals. It should focus on the strategic issues such as orderly … Continue reading

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Stopping the boats decently – can it be done? Guest blogger: Frank Brennan SJ

In this last financial year, “25,145 people have arrived on 394 boats – an average of over 70 people and more than a boat a day” as Scott Morrison, Tony Abbott’s Shadow Minister never tires of telling us.  Except for … Continue reading

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Asylum seekers and refugees – political slogans or humanitarian policies? John Menadue

Australia has a proud record in accepting 750,000 refugees since WWII. But the mood has now turned sour. It is so easy for unscrupulous politicians to exploit fear of the foreigner. It is paying off politically. We no longer ‘welcome … Continue reading

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Tony Abbott keeps telling us that boat people are illegals and by inference, criminals. John Menadue

Last week on radio Tony Abbott was at it again, repeatedly referring to illegals and illegal boats. It cannot be ignorance to keep calling asylum seekers illegals. He must know they are not illegals, but by using this language he … Continue reading

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Reviving Malaysia. John Menadue

As I pointed out in an earlier blog (27 March 2013), the Nauru/Manus ‘solution’ is not working to deter asylum seekers. The government foolishly adopted Tony Abbott’s proposal. With the failure of Nauru/Manus, the Minister for Immigration, Brendan O’Connor has … Continue reading

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More punishment for asylum seekers and refugees. John Menadue

The Coalition has announced that in government, it would deny boat arrivals access to an independent review of their claims for refugee status. It is another way of punishing vulnerable people and winning political points. There will be no change … Continue reading

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