Refugee Council of Australia
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Statistics on people in detention in Australia

Release and removals from detention

Release from detention

A person can be released from detention through intervention by a Minister, under the law. However, the numbers of people who have been granted a visa and released from detention has dropped significantly over the last few years.

However, the graph above only shows interventions for people recognised as refugees. The following graph shows the number of interventions for all people held in detention from August 2021. Similarly, the graphs below relate to all people, regardless of their refugee status.

This graph shows the reasons people were released from detention from May 2022 from Christmas Island detention centre.

This graph shows the reasons people were released from detention from May 2022 from Villawood detention centre.

This graph shows all releases from held detention from July 2021.

Removals and returns from detention in Australia

People in detention may 'request' to be removed to their country of origin. The Department calls these 'voluntary' removals. People in detention may also be involuntarily removed (also called 'forced returns' and, in common language, deported). However, the numbers of people who are removed in this way are relatively small.

This graph shows the number of voluntary and involuntary removals from detenntion in Australia.

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