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One of my closest friends or as I like to call him, family members, has been taken from us and sent to Christmas island. His family and friends all reside within Australia therefore he needs our help being granted permission to return here. Australia is the only home he knows and is a place where he truly feels he belongs. Please give me the opportunity to assist Ater in remaining in our beautiful country. He has friends and family here, he doesn't know anyone in his birth country, I don't believe he can feel safe anywhere but here in Australia. I believe him to be a peaceful and loyal citizen and if anyone deserves the opportunity to stay here, it would be him. Thank you so much for your time - we sincerely appreciate every single signature, each one could change his life dramatically! Below is a message from Ater Abdelraman Ater - I'm 29 years old African male that has been living in Australia for a long time - almost 17 years. I would like to tell you abit about myself - firstly thank you for taking the time to read this. I came here at the very young age young of 13 years old and attended High school at Sunnybank State High to which i completed year 12. From there I went on to TAFE and studied Mechanics which got me my first job as a first year apprentice but unfortunately due to not having a driver licence I was eventually let go. I then went back to TAFE to study Electronics Engineering which took 18 months to complete and got myself a Certt III in Electronics Engineering. I got a job as a Electrician working for a small family owned business which I loved so much! The owner looked at me as if I were his own son - I worked for him until unfortunately the business shut down due do money problems. I was extremely sad about leaving because he taught me alot and I really enjoyed my position. So I went back to TAFE once again, this time I picked a new challenge/path by studying Ware Housing Operations. I completed my Certt-III in Ware Housing Opreations and gained employment as a store person. Then went on to manage the ware house for almost a year, from there I was going from one ware house to another as junior manger until I got locked up as we speak. You may ask why I deserve to stay - well please let me start by saying this is my home. Where I grew up and made friends, who are more like my family. I held my first job and payed my first tax here, I've become a man, got a house and payed my first rent here. I could go on and on about everything I did for the first time but you get the point! I wasn't born here I know that but I grew up here, I was raised and brought up as an Australian. I know no other place to call home and because I don't have citizenship doesn't make me feel any less Australian in my heart. Citizenship is a piece of paper that's says I'm Australian but what really makes me Australian is standing tall, having pride in my country, helping others and that's the way I was raised. So sending me back to Sudan is wrong in so many ways, it even goes against the Australian values and beliefs as you will be sending me to the same people and dangers I ran away from. Sending me to Sudan is like sending me to a Foreign land because that's the truth - Sudan is a Foreign country to me! It is more like a strange land to me really, since I only know that country as my birth place, nothing more then that. By sending me there you'll be taking me away from my family, friends, my home and everything I build here in Australia. My parents came to this country and spoke no English what so ever but they managed to get a job and worked hard to look after us kids. My father used to tell me not speaking English is not an option or excuse not to work. I was so lucky by having the best parents a kid could ask for and having a safe country to call home! My parents always taught me that in our house you have 2 options - study or work that's how my parents brought me up and I couldn't be more greatful to them for teaching all their values which made me the man I am today. My parents taught me to be kind and thoughtful to others and always help those in need. That is why I always give back to the community by donating to Breast Cancer Foundations, PCYC and many other foundations. That's how I give back and show my support but i would like to do more in future as well. I would honestly take the shirt off my own back to give to you and I'm not kidding. So you see Australia is not just my home it is my life. Taking me away from Australia is unfathomable and by sending me back to Sudan well I would rather you throw me in the fires of hell because that's what the place is. I may have been in trouble couple of times in the past and went to court. But never in my life have I been convicted of any rapes or child related offences nor murder or arm robberies. My court charges have been for fighting and drink driving related offences which let me make it clear I do not condone and in the strongest way possible nor do I encourage anyone to do same thing. I may have got into fights in my younger days which was a stupid thing to do esspecially for someone like me who came from a war torn country. The last thing I should be doing is fighting, acting stupid and childish but I got caught up with the wrong crowds. That's not an excuse at all Im just pointing that out. Because of a drink driving charge that's why I'm in Immigration Detention right now after spending 4months in jail. Because of a new laws which says if any non citizen got a sentence of more then 12 months your visa will then be automatically cancel and it doesnt matter what you have done. Because I was giving 4 months jail and 8 months parol or commonly known as a community order, all together that makes 12 months. So that's how I have landed myself in the position Im currently in at the Detention Centre. I'm not a bad person but I have made some bad choices in the past which I'm not proud of. I'm not a bad bloke - Im a down to earth person who'll do anything to help you and I won't stop until I have helped. Ask anyone who knows me - if it is money you want i'll give you money if I have it. If you just need a friend to talk to, I'm there for you no matter if its good or bad times - I'm there for you. So because of a drink driving charge I'm getting deported which is not fair I mean I did my jail time and I took full responsibility for my actions and apologised in court for my irresponsibility. People sometimes assume I'm something that I am not so please dont judge a book by its cover and if your reading this then you are reading the book - so thank you. But getting deported I dont think is fair at all I've been punished by the court and sentenced to a jail term and didn't have a problem with it at all. But now im getting deported, taken away from my parents, 2 brothers and sister, all of my mates please tell me if thats fair. Rather than being a wrong act, because of new laws I find myself facing deportation. So now I'm asking you the public to please speak up don't let them go on with the deportation, speak up against the Government decision to deport me. Only you the people can make the call you have the right to over turn the decision of the Government. Please tell them what they doing is wrong by signing the petition - let your voice be heard, help me share my story and let you the public be the Judge! Please sign!

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