Thursday, 8 September 2022
Statements by Members
I seek leave to table this petition from the Refugee Action Collective (Victoria).
Over the last decade Australia's refugee policies have resulted in the deliberate, cruel and criminal treatment of people seeking refuge in Australia. Boat turnbacks, the policy of both major parties, violate international law and risk sending people back to death, torture and persecution.
People seeking refuge in Australia have a right to live with dignity, security and safety in our community. We, the people signed on this petition, and the Greens, once again demand: an immediate end to offshore detention and boat turnbacks; that all temporary visa types be converted to permanent visas; that all refugees who have been rejected be allowed to have access to appeals; that medevac refugees be allowed to stay in Australia permanently; delivery of an additional 20,000 Afghan refugee places; and that the ban on accepting refugees coming in from Indonesia be lifted, and refugees stranded in PNG to be allowed to come to Australia.
We have a terrible legacy in this country on this issue. We have treated a large number of people incredibly poorly. Labor, in opposition, said they would treat people more humanely, but in government the problem is that Labor has continued many of the reprehensible policies of the Liberal National Party. These policies are brutal, unfair, cruel and ultimately must end. They are a huge stain on our collective hands. I urge Labor to finally end this barbaric and abusive treatment of vulnerable people who need a safe place to live, to create a better life for themselves and their families.