I Choose Humane

Posted on: May 15, 2019, by :

In the lead up to the federal election, The Refugee Council of Australia has launched a campaign to tell candidates of all persuasions that a large cross section of society, including their electorate, are demanding an end to cruel policies towards refugees and people seeking asylum, and are calling for a fair, humane approach to dealing with all people.

Tuesday May 14 has been proclaimed as Choose Humane Day.

Working in co-operation with other agencies, the Refugee Council has developed a 5-point platform to effect the fair treatment of refugees and asylum-seekers:

1. End offshore processing. The people we have sent to Nauru and Manus Island should be brought to Australia immediately. We should end our policies of deterrence and treat people as required by the Refugee Convention.

2. Treat people seeking asylum fairly. People seeking asylum in Australia should be treated humanely, and their claims for protection fairly determined no matter how they came to Australia.

3. Reform of the immigration detention system. We should ban mandatory, indefinite immigration detention. We should set time limits for detention and ban the detention of children.

4. A larger and more responsive Refugee and Humanitarian Program. We can and should accept more refugees, restoring our Refugee and Humanitarian Program immediately to 20,000 places and then increasing it to between 27,000 and 30,000 places annually within three years. We should also establish other ways for protecting people beyond our Refugee and Humanitarian Program, including:

  • a new program to allow refugees in Australia to reunite with their family.
  • a better and larger community sponsorship program.
  • a pilot program for children at risk.

5. Australia’s improved engagement in Asia. Our government should work to support our neighbours to find the best answers available for people displaced by conflict and persecution. We should use our diplomacy, aid and refugee resettlement program to address the causes of displacement, help countries rebuild after conflict, and to address the urgent needs of refugees in their communities.

You can find the complete platform and more information at www.choosehumane.org.au where you will also be able to ‘sign the pledge’ and be part of the petition that is being presented to the Federal political parties. You may even like to purchase a t-shirt to proclaim your support more visibly!

This is an important issue that speaks into the culture of our nation and I encourage you to take it into consideration as you cast your vote in the upcoming election.


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