Forum: 'God Powers' and detention - the cruel and arbitrary rules for refugees

Forum
Melbourne

When

6:30pm Monday 31 January

Where

Kathleen Syme Library and Community Centre
251 Faraday St
Carlton VIC 3053
Australia

Why

Speakers:

Maria O'Sullivan - Associate Professor and a Deputy Director of the Castan Centre for Human Rights Law. Maria is the author of a number of international and national publications on the subject of human rights, public law and refugee law.

Adnan Choopani - refugee in the Park Hotel who came to Australia at age 15 and has spent a third of his life detained by Australia

Joey Tangaloa Taualii - 501 detainee in MITA

This meeting will be both in person and via Zoom.

For those who wish to participate online, register in advance for this meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZIkf-qsqD0uH9AbNQLE1PUQV8mfTlHNdt0n

The unparalleled powers of the Migration Minister allows Border Force to be judge, jury and executioner. Liberty Victoria has called them "God Powers". It is those powers that have enshrined indefinite detention as a sentence for people who have committed no crime.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has said: "Rules are rules," but the Djokovic fiasco reveals the capacity for political interference in Immigration decisions.

This is the same political manipulation and vindictiveness that is holding around 60 Medevac refugees indefinitely in the Park hotel-prison and other detention centres in Australia.

The government is able to hold the Medevac refugees because it does not issue them a visa when they are transferred to Australia from PNG or Nauru. They are able to be detained in Australia despite the fact they have refugee status, they are rendered technically "unlawful". They were told they would be released when they came to Australia but then the government changed the rules.

When it looked like the High Court might rule to limit the government‘s ability to detain refugees, the government again changed the rules, pushing the Clarifying International Obligations for Removal Act through parliament.

Over half of the Medevac refugees have been released because Minister Peter Dutton said their detention was "too expensive". But the ongoing detention of the Medevac refugees remains too costly in financial terms and human lives - no reason, or rule, has been provided for why 60 remain in detention.

Come to a forum that unpacks the cruel arbitrary and Kafkaesque rules keeping refugees detained, and discuss how we can organise to end this nightmare.

Call Chris on 0403 013 183 for more details.

Contact details