14,000 refugees in Indonesia need a home

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Dear Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern,

We ask you to resettle refugees stuck in Indonesia for almost seven years.

When Australia closed its doors to refugees and asylum seekers in 2013 and put hundreds of children, women and men in offshore detention centres on Nauru and Manus Island, more than 14,000 refugees and asylum seekers have been left in limbo in Indonesia.

Since then, the refugees and asylum seekers in Indonesia are largely forgotten and they live in a state of uncertainty. They have no right to work and rely on limited supports provided by charities and UNHCR.

While the refugee children have access to primary and secondary education, only a tiny number of them have enrolled in Indonesian public schools. According to the UNHCR, “This is the result of several factors, including the limited geographical coverage of CWS programs, inadequate sources of funding, language barriers, and the lack of willingness on the part of parents to enrol their children in Indonesian schools.”

With the Australian government ruthlessly rejecting New Zealand’s offer to resettle refugees from Nauru and Manus, let’s not forget that 14,000 refugees and asylum seekers have been living in a relatively harsh condition in Indonesia.

In the wake of Christchurch Massacre, the world witnessed your great leadership and care for vulnerable people. Please offer these refugees a home and we assure you they will never let you down.