Dear Ms Andrews,
I am a friend of the Centre for a Compassionate Society, which is based in the electorate of Melbourne. I live in the electorate of ***. We have committed to writing a letter to your government every week until all refugees and asylum-seekers who remain on Nauru and in PNG under Operation Sovereign Borders are appropriately re-settled. We also seek humane treatment for refugees and asylum seekers on-shore. We are copying this letter to the Prime Minister, the Minister for Immigration, the Shadow Minister for Home Affairs and Immigration, and to our local members of parliament.
The following is a message to you from one refugee who is currently detained in the Park Hotel, along with 43 others.
He says: I love Australia, I love its people, but these policies are terrible. I think Australia is a beautiful country, a peaceful country which understand justice. I have respect for Karen Andrews. This detention is ruining my mind. I want to be busy, to go to gym but I can’t, I have no energy. I have no control over my life. I ask myself, “how many seasons are there in Australia”, because in here I have only one season.
Minister, this suffering is so unnecessary. We recognise that boat turn backs are preventing further arrivals. The ongoing detention of these refugees and asylum seekers off-shore and in places like MITA and the Park Hotel serves no purpose other than to further crush the spirits of people who are already thoroughly demoralised. Will you:
1. Release all asylum seekers and refugees currently detained under Operation Sovereign Borders into the community and commit to achieving permanent settlement options for them this year?
2. Set a limit of 6 months on the length of time that anyone can be kept in immigration detention?
Send your letter to Ms Karen Andrews: email@example.com (Minister for Home Affairs).
You could cc it to Ms Kristina Keneally: firstname.lastname@example.org (Shadow minister for Immigration and Home affairs), and to your local Federal MP.
Send the text to the Prime Minister via their website HERE, and to the immigration minister, Alex Hawke, HERE.