Dear refugee supporter,
The government has been forced into a temporary suspension of offshore processing, but the situation of refugees in Australia is as desperate as ever. Last week's suicide of a Tamil asylum-seeker in Villawood – the sixth in detention since September 2010 – has highlighted the chilling human cost of the government's commitment to detention, a commitment that shows no signs of relenting. The harrowing recent 'Four Corners' expose of conditions in the detention network adds to the urgency with which we must demand change. In addition, this week's tragic drowning of eight asylum seekers off Indonesia has reignited calls from both sides of politics for offshore processing. The Malaysia option has been abandoned for now, but not forgotten. Both sides of politics have indicated that they will legislate to allow some form of offshore processing at the earliest political opportunity. (For more information on all these facts, see the press releases on the RAC website, refugeeaction.org.au.)
The ALP National Conference to be held at Darling Harbour in December provides an ideal opportunity to publicly call on the government to change its cruel and unnecessary policies. The Refugee Action Coalition is organizing a large demonstration outside the conference on December 4, already endorsed by ChilOut, Labor for Refugees, and several unions.
Please put this date in your diaries and join us to show the government and the ALP the support that exists for giving Australia the humane refugee policy that it, and refugees, have needed for so long.
Please circulate this message to friends and families, RSVP on Facebook, and download the rally poster and leaflet from the 'Resources' section of our website, www.refugeeaction.org.au.
Nick Riemer (for RAC)
RALLY AT ALP NATIONAL CONFERENCE
12pm Sunday December 4
Meet Sydney Town hall to march to the ALP conference at Darling harbour
End mandatory detention— Refugees are welcome
Not in Malaysia, not in Nauru— No offshore processing
Initial endorsements: Chilout, Refugee Action Coalition, Labor for Refugees (NSW), National Tertiary Education Union (NSW), Australian Services Union (NSW & ACT (Services))