8 January 2022

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.

This week, the attention of the world’s media has been on the Park Hotel, because your Department has chosen to detain Novak Djokovic there along with 33 refugees who have been in immigration detention for more than 8 years. No doubt Mr Djokovic is suffering, and his supporters have heard about the bugs in his room and the terrible food. His dream of winning the Australian Open may be jeopardised.

Can you imagine how much worse it is for the 33 men you continue to detain in that facility even though they have spent more than 8 years in some form of immigration detention? These people have dreams as well, which may be less ambitious than Mr Djokovic’s; but you continue to deny them the possibility of pursuing even those modest dreams. Refugee ‘Joy’ writes:

When I came to Christmas Island in 2013 I was young man. I had dreams. I wanted to build up my career. I wanted to make a beautiful family. But my dream never come back. Because everything was ruined and finished. Who can give back my dream? My beautiful Life. And our 9 years. Is there anyone who can give back our 9 years?

Minister, this torture must end. We beg you to find – as a matter of urgent priority – permanent settlement options for these people and others stranded in indefinite detention on- and off-shore, to allow them to begin to heal and to get on with their lives.

Yours sincerely,

*

Send your letter to Ms Karen Andrews: karen.andrews.mp@aph.gov.au (Minister for Home Affairs).
You could cc it to

Send the text to the Prime Minister via his website HERE.

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