Inspections at Detention Centres
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Everyday refugees and asylum seekers suffer worse experiences than we could possibly imagine. These experiences are not caused by the dictatorships of their own countries, or by terrorist organisations, or by their own people, these experiences are caused by us.
The UN has created the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that is to be obeyed by all countries who have signed and ratified the declaration. Australia is one of 48 countries that have signed and ratified the declaration.
The detention centres that are in Australia or are offshore have breached over six articles in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. These are articles 2, 5, 9, 13, 14, and 25.
Recently in the Australian media it has been found that asylum seekers were being abused while in detention. In August 2016, newspaper, ‘The Guardian’ published 2,100 leaked reports of alleged assaults, sexual assaults and self-harm incidents involving detainees held at the Nauru Detention Centre, one of Australia's offshore processing centres, between May 2013 and October 2015. As of June 2016, the centre held 338 men, 55 women and 49 children. Although children made up a small proportion of the centre's detainees, they were involved in slightly more than half of the incidents of abuse documented in the leaked reports. The leaked reports have increased pressure on the Australian government to reform its refugee and asylum policies.
We are petitioning to the Australian Federal Government to allow spontaneous inspections of detention centres both onshore and offshore to ensure that the people who are being detained are kept in humane conditions.
These inspections are a necessity as it allows the public, the media, and members of Parliament to see the issues that surround refugees in our centres. It allows us to see if any possible measures can be taken to prevent abuse against refugees. This is required as our detention of asylum seekers as plagued our public image, our asylum policy has been criticised for breaching human rights and has made deemed Australia as a place where we have little regard for those seeking asylum. This is wrong, there is an increasing majority of people who support refugees and realise the inhumane activities that occur in detention centres.
If you sign this petition you are not only supporting inspections to detention centres, it means you are willing to help those who are in trouble, help those who have lived a life of fear and pain, and those who only want to live a simple and safe life. With you just simply signing our petition it leaves a massive impact on the lives of asylum seekers and refugees.
- Nauru refugee says medical treatment withheld after he had heart attack 2017, Theguardian, accessed 22 March 2017, <https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2016/dec/21/nauru-refugee-says-medical-treatment-withheld-after-he-had-heart-atttack>
- Manus Island MP says ‘bashed’ Iranian asylum seekers ‘deserved what they got’2017, News.com.au, accessed 22 March 2017, <http://www.news.com.au/world/pacific/manus-island-mp-says-bashed-iranian-asylum-seekers-deserved-what-they-got/news-story/6ef5b96b7b4bf3587ae9162913ea8925>
- Australia's border policy already targets Muslims for exclusion. Do we just forgive and forget? 2016, Daily Life, accessed 22 March 2017, <http://www.dailylife.com.au/news-and-views/dl-opinion/australias-border-policy-already-targets-muslims-for-exclusion-do-we-just-forgive-and-forget-20160720-gq9q0s.html>
- The death of Khodayar Amini 2015, The Saturday Paper, accessed 22 March 2017, <https://www.thesaturdaypaper.com.au/news/immigration/2015/10/24/the-death-khodayar-amini/14456052002536>
- Asylum seeker dreamed of a better future with his family 2017, The Sydney Morning Herald, accessed 22 March 2017, <http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/asylum-seeker-dreamed-of-a-better-future-with-his-family-20150802-giplm5.html>
- Manus Island authorities trying to deport Nepalese asylum seekers from detention centre, lawyer says 2017, ABC News, accessed 22 March 2017, <http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-02-09/manus-island-deportation-detention-centre-asylum-seeker-lawyer/8254630>
- Healey, J 2013, Asylum Seekers and Immigration Detention, Spinney Press, Thirroul.
- Wendlandt, S 2017, 'Refugees: An Overview', Australia Points of View: Refugees, p. 1. Refugees: An Overview (on both sides of the issue)
- Anon, 2017. Statistics Archives - Refugee Council of Australia. [online] Refugee Council of Australia. Available at: <http://www.refugeecouncil.org.au/getfacts/statistics/> [Accessed 26 Mar. 2017].
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