Refugee Action Collective (Vic)

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

Archives 2019

Alison Battisson’s Speech from “The Hidden Hell for Refugees in the Heart of Melbourne” forum

On August 5th, 2019, the Refugee Action Collective organised a forum in Melbourne entitled ‘The Hidden Hell for Refugees in the Heart of Melbourne” to shed light on what is happening in the onshore detention centres.

One of the key speakers was lawyer Alison Battisson from Human Rights For All. A live stream of the event is available on our Facebook: Attached is Ms Battisson’s speech for further reading and to recap what was discussed at the forum.


Hundreds of Temporary Protection Visa (TPV) and Safe Haven Enterprise Visa (SHEV) holders, and protection visa applicants, from around Australia will converge on Canberra to hold a protest on the lawns of Parliament House, on Monday 29 July, from 10.00am-11.30 am. The protest will move to the UN headquarters between 1.30 – 2.00pm.  

There are around 30,000 TPV and SHEV holders and applicants living in the community in Australia, facing increasing hardship due to the long delays in processing applications and the restrictions on the temporary refugee visas, that deny family reunion, the right to travel, and are only valid for three and five years (respectively) before they are re-assessed from scratch.

Thousands are still in limbo; some having arrived in Australia since in 2012 are still waiting for the protection claims to be assessed.

Between 1999 and 2007, approximately 11,000 TPVs were issued, and approximately 90 per cent of TPV holders eventually gained permanent visas. But, since 2014, government legislation prevents refugees gaining permanent visas.

Government policy has created a permanent underclass of refugees in Australian society vulnerable to exploitation, while they denied family reunion and the right to travel.

The TPV, SHEV and protection visa applicants are descending on Canberra to put their case for urgent change to the government, to the Parliament, and to the UN.

For more information: contact Ian Rintoul, 0417 275 713

Samir Kafaji, Iraqi Affairs Association Victoria, 0431 099 338