Refugee Action Collective (Vic)

Free the refugees! Let them land, let them stay!

Archives October 2012

Cup Day Welcome Refugees BBQ & Festival

Tuesday 6 November, 1:00pm – 5:00pm
Outside the Maribyrnong Detention Centre – 53 Hampstead Rd, Maidstone.

This Melbourne Cup Day join refugee rights supporters outside the Maribyrnong detention centre for an anti-racism music concert & BBQ. Let the people inside know many of us support their attempts to live in Australia by taking a Melbourne tradition to them.

Music from the legendary Chris Wilson, the Cherrywoods and Les Thomas. Plus more acts to be announced.

Halal BBQ & Drinks available. Bring your own picnic rug & hamper.

Plus a giant Melbourne Cup Sweep!

In between the music hear from Pamela Curr, campaigns coordinator for the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre & Adam Bandt, Greens MP.

We will also be making contact with the detainees behind the razor wire to communicate our solidarity with their struggle for freedom and human rights.

Organisations that support refugee rights are encouraged to bring an information table to the event.

For more information about the event call 0402 246 491 or 0405 736 265

Click attending & share the event on facebook to help get the word out.

This event is endorsed by the Refugee Advocacy Network

COMMUNITY PROTEST ACTION Against Offshore Processing – Sun 21 October, 1pm

NO OFFSHORE PROCESSING – Not Nauru, Not Manus Island, Not Malaysia

Sunday 21 October  – 1pm at State Library

Invite your friends on Facebook

Speakers include:

Adam Bandt – Greens deputy leader
Theo Mackaay –  General Secretary, Victorian Council of Churches
Michele O’Neil – State Secretary, Textile Clothing and Footwear Union of Australia
Aran Mylvaganam – Tamil community
Abe Ape – from The Future of Rap


See more details below – this Action is organised by the Refugee Advocacy Network and is endorsed by

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Refugees with adverse ASIO assessments must be immediately released

The Refugee Action Collective welcomes the decision of the High Court ruling invalid the regulation which has allowed the Immigration minister to deny protection visas to refugees based on ‘adverse assessments’ by ASIO.

We join the chorus of refugee and human rights advocates calling on the Immigration Minister to immediately release all 54 refugees with adverse ASIO assessments.

These people have all been found to be refugees, some have been in detention over three years.

“The government has tried to create the impression that these refugees could be terrorists, or a threat to society, when this isn’t the case. The reason for adverse ASIO assessment of Arjuna (or “M47”) which came to light in the High Court case, was his alleged association with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The LTTE has never been declared a terrorist organisation by Australian authorities.”

said Chris Breen spokesperson for the Refugee Action Collective

“It is extremely likely that association with the LTTE is also the reason for adverse assessments of other Tamil refugees. But there is no reason someone who fought for the Tamil Tigers should be considered a security risk in Australia.”

The High Court stated in its judgement that an “ASIO…assessment involves a different and lesser threshold than the determination of whether there is a significant risk that a person presents a danger to the Australian community or a segment of it.”

It is clear ASIO assessments have been wrongly used to get around Australia’s obligations under the 1951 Refugee Convention.

“The Minister owes the plaintiff Arjuna and the other refugees with adverse ASIO assessments an apology and compensation.”

said Chris Breen

Keeping these refugees locked up is destroying lives. Ranjini whose case has been widely publicised is still locked up with her two boys Pirai, 9, and Kathir, 6. She was living in the community posing no threat to anyone, when she was whisked away to detention on the basis of an adverse ASIO assessment. She is not allowed private unsupervised visits with her husband. There are reports Ranjini and her boys are deteriorating in detention. Psychologist report after psychologist report has found that children’s development is severely damaged by detention, and that mental health issues caused by detention cannot be treated as long as detention is maintained.

Labor Attorney General Minister Roxon has cruelly said the High Court decision “could mean legislative change”.

“The Refugee Action Collective calls on Labor not to conspire with the Liberals to change the legislation, and not to crush the hopes which have been raised. Labor voters did not vote for indefinite detention, or for a rerun of the Howard era refugee bashing.”

said Chris Breen

Sadly Home Secretary Jason Clare has pointed out despite the decision “The Minister for Immigration retains the power to refuse to give somebody a visa if they are determined to be a refugee, if he believes they shouldn’t be granted a visa for national security reasons” .

Chris Breen said in response “Such ministerial decisions would be open to review unlike the ASIO assessments which the Minister has been hiding behind. But no review would be needed if Minister Bowen heeded the call of the Refugee Action Collective to use his power to immediately release Ranjini and all other refugees with adverse ASIO assessments.”

Contact Chris Breen 0403 013 183 for further comment