Refugee Action Collective (Vic)

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

Category 2016 Media Releases


Refugee Action Coalition



Like the death of Hamid Khaziae and Reza Barati, the responsibility for the death of the Sudanese refugee Faysal Ishak Ahmed, lies with the Immigration Department and the Minister for Immigration.

The statement from the immigration department says that the department ‘is not aware of any suspicious circumstances’. That’s true, precisely because the department is well aware of all the circumstances of Faysals’s death and of the role the department  has played in creating the circumstances that led to his death.

The medical negligence and the culture of dismissal so obvious in the treatment of Hamid who died in 2014, is just as obvious in the treatment of Faysal.

On Wednesday, the day before he collapsed and hit his head, Faysal told other refugees, that the IHMS doctor had threatened him and had told him. ‘You are not sick…do not come to us again,’ and, ‘If you do we will not treat you.”

Interestingly, the department’s statement does admit to Faysal suffering a seizure.  But Faysal had been suffering seizures resulting in him collapsing,  for weeks with out treatment


“We do not yet know the precise case of Faysal’s death whether it is the head injuries he suffered or his underlying medical condition,” said Ian Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition.

“What we do know is that he should not have been in detention, should not have been on Manus Island and was denied the medical attention he needed.  Faysal is another fatal victim of Australia’s brutal detention regime.

“It has taken two years to have an inquest into the death of Hamid Khazaie. Justice demands that the Manus is closed now – and that those sent who were sent to Manus are all brought to Australia.”

For more information contact Ian Rintoul  0417 275 713

Media Release: Melbourne Teachers Vigil for Refugee Rights to Launch T-shirt action Monday

Media Release: Melbourne Teachers Vigil for Refugee Rights to Launch T-shirt action Monday

Teachers for Refugees will hold a vigil Monday 12th of December, at 6pm at the State Library to launch the Teachers for Refugees T-Shirt action.
Hundreds of teachers and refugee supporters will be attending the vigil to draw attention to the human rights abuses in the offshore camps. The group have sold out of t-shirts, and teachers have been creating their own with iron-on labels and screen prints and making badges so they can join the action.
Lucy Honan from Teachers for Refugees in Melbourne said “There is a human rights crisis in the offshore camps, and the government is afraid of teachers shining a light on it. Children are being abused, and do not have real access to education. Mental illness and self harm are widespread.The Manus detention centre was declared illegal in April. Billions of dollars have been spent on cruelty that should have been spent on our schools. It should come as no surprise to the government that teachers are calling for the camps to be closed.

“When teachers who worked on Nauru and Manus were threatened with two years gaol terms for speaking about the abuses they witnessed, they said ‘we won’t be silenced’. This week, we are saying the same.

Some principals are supporting teachers to wear the shirts proudly to work, despite the departmental notice. Some teachers are defying intimidation tactics and planning to wear the t-shirts to class, others are finding ways to make sure our message is seen by our school communities by taking photos out the front of schools, or walking through the main street as a group with our t-shirts on. 
Nothing was said when teachers wore white ribbons in school to make a statement about domestic violence. The difference is that the violence against asylum seekers is government policy.”
The launch and the t-shirt action has been supported by The Victorian Trades Hall Council, the Australian Education Union and the National Tertiary Education Union, GetUp, the Refugee Council of Australia, the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, VicTas Uniting Church for Refugees, The Brigidine Asylum Seeker Project, the Refugee Action Collective and Mums for Refugees. 
Speakers at the vigil include;
Jane Willey, former teacher on Nauru
Justin Mullaly, Branch Secretary of the Australian Education Union
Sarevenaz Almasi, Kurdish refugee and maths teacher
Ellen Sandell, Greens MLA for Melbourne
Sally Morgan, teacher of refugees and asylum seekers at St Joseph’s Flexible Learning Centre
Thach Ly, Physics and Maths teacher and former refugee
Contact Lucy Honan, 0404728104 or Chris Breen 0403013183- please note we will be unavailable from 7:30am due to work, but will call back during lunch/recess and after school.

Rock 4 Refugees! Human Rights Day Fundraising Gig

Join the Refugee Action Collective for a fun afternoon of music, comedy and poetry, while raising money for a good cause!

When: 1pm-6pm Saturday 10 December
Where: The Reverence Hotel, 28 Napier St, Footscray, VIC

MC – Corine Grant


The Fabric DJs
The Same Boat
A Rioting Mind
Damian Callinan
Nelly Thomas
Josh Earl
Soreti Kadir
Benjamin Solah
Rikki Livermore

Book tickets here:

$15 full
$10 concession
Free for asylum seekers and refugees

RAC is a grassroots activist group without paid staff. Money raised goes to cover the costs of printing posters and leaflets for rallies and events, as well as sending money for phone credit to refugees on Manus and Nauru.

For more info:
Facebook event
Amanda 0450 496 044 or Chris 0403 013 183