The 267 asylum seekers facing deportation to Nauru and Manus Island by the Australian government could go to New Zealand if they are found to be refugees, the country's Prime Minister John Key said on February 15. Among those facing deportation are 37 babies born in Australia to asylum seeker parents, and another 54 children, some of whom are attending school. A High Court decision this month ruled Australia's offshore processing regime was legal.
Unions for Refugees released this statement of solidarity with the stand taken by doctors and nurses at Lady Cilento Children's Hospital in Brisbane staff on February 12. * * * Unions for Refugees would like to congratulate the stand taken by doctors and nurses at the Lady Cilento Children's Hospital in Brisbane in support of 12-month-old Baby Asha. We encourage every unionist to extend their solidarity to them.
Activists unfurl banner off eastern freeway overpass in Melbourne
There are more people today who have been displaced by war, poverty and climate change than at any point in recorded history. The current number of refugees has exceeded those displaced by World War I and World War II combined.
Senate rejects bid to make unemployed wait for welfare An attack on young people has been defeated. A measure to force jobseekers under the age of 25 to wait an additional four weeks before accessing unemployment benefits has been defeated in the Senate, 30 votes to 35. Labor and the Greens opposed the bill, announced in the May federal budget, meaning six of the eight crossbenchers had to vote with the government for the bill to pass.
Carol Hucker worked on Manus Island as a counsellor for International Health and Medical Services (IHMS) and as a case worker for the Salvation Army from June 2013 to July last year. She has allowed Green Left Weekly to publish her account of her time there so people can become more aware of what is occurring on Manus Island and to these men. She said: “It is my hope that through this brief account the men on Manus will not be forgotten.” This is the first of a multi-part series and covers the period June to July 2013. * * *
BRISBANE Come to a rally to save penalty rates on Saturday September 5 at 11am. Capalaba Sports Club, 113 Ney Rd, Capalaba. Organised by United Voice Queensland and supported by QCU. MELBOURNE
Asylum seekers from Iran whose claims for refugee status have been rejected are being intimidated into “voluntary” repatriation. The Australian government does not have an agreement with the Iranian government which will not accept the forced return of those who have fled the country.
The Australian Labor Party’s 47th National Conference was held in Melbourne from July 24 to 26. It is its highest decision-making forum and the largest political gathering in the country. The conference decides the policies that Labor will take to the next federal election and potentially implement in government. A few days before the conference began, Labor leader Bill Shorten announced a policy of turning back asylum seeker boats, essentially agreeing with the Coalition government’s policy.
Sixty people listened as refugees gave harrowing accounts of what had led them to seek asylum in Australia at a forum in Parramatta on July 15 organised by People Just Like Us. Shokufa Tahiri and Ezatullah Salar spoke about the long history of oppression of the Hazara minority in Afghanistan. In 1890, Abdur Rahman Khan exterminated 63% of the minority group and until the 1930s Hazaras were systematically driven out of cities, and deprived of citizenship and education. Under the Taliban, it became a crime to be Hazara, Turkic or Shia.