15 January 2022

Dear Mr Hawke,

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 Home Affairs, the Shadow Minister for Home Affairs and Immigration, and to our local members of parliament.

The world has certainly noticed your use of your ministerial powers this week to cancel Novak Djokovic’s visa and see him detained once again in the Park Hotel. Your reasoning that to do otherwise would be to fuel anti-vaccination sentiment speaks of a deep concern for the health of the Australian community. 

Minister there is another risk to the health of the Australian community which you have the power to heal. The festering wound to which I refer is the continuing and indefinite detention by our government of innocent people. As the 33 men who are Djokovic’s fellow detainees in the Park Hotel look out their windows at the people enjoying their freedom, it is not only the refugees who suffer. To those people who look up at the faces in the window, aware or not of who is detained there, there is a great moral injury in the fact that the government which represents them is inflicting such suffering on people who came here already traumatised, seeking safety and freedom. 

This appalling situation must end, and it would only take a stroke of your powerful pen to do so. We beg you to release these men into the community, and expedite permanent settlement options for them and their friends in detention on- and off-shore.

Yours sincerely,

*

Send your letter to Mr Alex Hawke: alex.hawke.mp@aph.gov.au (The Immigration Minister)
You could cc it to

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

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