Refugee Action Collective (Vic)

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

Archives July 2015

Defying the Border Force Act: Speaking out against detention cruelty (RAC forum Tue Sept 1)

@ The Multicultural Hub, 506 Elizabeth St Melbourneborderforce forum flyer.pdf

Christine Cummins – Eye-witness report from recently returned psychiatric nurse and torture and trauma Counsellor for asylum seekers on Christmas Island. Christine has returned after five years on the island, she is member of ANF and has initiated a petition with the support of the AEU and ANF to repeal the border force legislation.

Christine Craic – National Vice President of The Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW)

Nathan Kennedy – President of Australia Lawyers for Human Rights

The Coalition’s oppressive Border Force Act was passed with ALP support.  It threatens doctors, teachers, nurses and other workers with two years jail if they speak out about what they witness in detention. It threatens silence because there is something to hide. On Manus Island Reza Barati was murdered and 70 others sustained serious injuries in attacks by those responsible for their safety. Extreme medical negligence killed Hamid Khazaei. On Nauru there have been ongoing sexual assaults against asylum seekers and refugees. In the week of the anniversary of the death of Hamid Khazaei come to a forum to discuss how we can fight both the legislation, and the cruelty of Australia’s detention regime.

call Jasmine on 0405 317 787 for more info


Manus Island detainees ask for help as violence threats increase

Refugee Action Coalition



Rumours of possible violent clashes between local PNG people and
Wilson Security over the alleged rape of the local PNG detention
administration worker has also raised anxieties among the asylum
seekers that they could be the victims of any attack on the detention
centre, as they were on 17 February 2014, when Reza Bararti was killed.

There have been threats of violence since the incident on 17 February
this year, when families of the woman involved demanded that Wilson’s
hand over the security guards allegedly involved in the assault on the

Transfield immediately issued warnings to staff not to leave the
accommodation after 6pm.

There are concerns that staff will be withdrawn from the detention
centre as concerns escalate about a possible attack on staff.

“We are asking for help. We are not safe,” one asylum seeker said from
Manus Island.

The incident also raises concerns about the possible use of the Border
Force Act against any whistleblowers who have information about the
response of Immigration and Transfield to the incident.

The alleged rape and the recent murder and machete mutilation on two
local security workers have also raised anxieties among those living
in the transit accommodation in East Lorengau.

The concerns are growing as today’s ‘close-of-business’ deadline
imposed by the PNG Police Commissioner for Transfield to bring back
the guards sent off the island following the incident draws closer

The move by Transfield to send the guards off the island raises
parallels with the actions by previous management, G4S, in the
aftermath of the killing of Reza Berati in 2014.

“There seems to be a pattern of cover-up and perverting the course of
justice on Manus Island. It is not only the alleged attackers in the
recent incident who should be brought back to Manus Island,” said Ian
Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition.

“We want the ex-pats identified at the time as being involved in the
killing of Reza Barati to also be brought back to Manus Island so his
murder can be properly investigated. For too long the Immigration
department and detention centre managements have acted with impunity
regarding the abuses and violence associated with the detention

For more information contact Ian Rintoul 0417 275 713.

Audio & Video from RAC’s debate with the ALP’s Brad Chilcott on Boat Turnbacks


Brad Chilcott – ALP delegate to National Conference and former director of Welcome to Australia


Chris Breen – Refugee Action Collective


Discussion and summing up


(video unfortunately cut out part way through)