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New research sheds light on growing barriers to visiting detention

The Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA) has today released new research which reveals the increasing difficulties for visitors in gaining access to onshore immigration detention facilities. The report, Unwelcome Visitors: Challenges Faced by People Visiting Immigration Detention, is based on national consultations with regular visitors to onshore detention centres and people who have been detained, and outlines a worrying securitisation which is threatening a crucial lifeline for many.  Paul…

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Australia digs itself into a hole by lecturing about boats

The Australian Government’s lecturing of the world about how to stop the flow of refugees by boat is undermining its efforts to quietly find countries willing to join the United States in taking refugees from Australia’s offshore detention on Nauru and Manus Island, the Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA) says. Welcoming today’s call from the United Nations Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, for Australia…

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Refugee Council to PM: You’ve made your point about boats, now end the suffering

  Refugee Council of Australia CEO Paul Power has today asked Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to end the offshore detention regime now that the government has “made its point about boat arrivals clearly to the world”. In a letter to Mr Turnbull on the fourth anniversary of Kevin Rudd’s establishment of the “regional resettlement arrangement” with Papua New Guinea, Mr Power highlights the growing…

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Tens of Thousands Turn Out for Australia’s Biggest Ever Refugee Week

Refugee Week 2017 was officially Australia’s biggest to date, with over 500 events celebrated across the country in every state and territory. Film screenings, art exhibitions, circus performances, public storytelling, music festivals, comedy galas, poetry slams, fashion shows, a smorgasbord of mouth-watering food and much, much more brought out tens of thousands of Australians to celebrate the courage and contribution that refugees bring to…

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New Refugee Statistics Highlight Need For Greater Australian Support For Africa

New global refugee statistics from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) highlight the need for Australia to increase support to nations in eastern and central Africa, the Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA) says. UNHCR’s 2016 Global Trends report shows that Uganda received more refugees last year than any other country, with 532,725 people being given refugee protection. RCOA chief executive officer Paul…

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Justice for some on Manus but costs of indefinite offshore detention grow and grow

The Australian Government has today agreed to pay $70 million in a class action settlement brought by 1,905 people detained on Manus Island. The settlement today by the Australian Government and private corporations contracted to carry out immigration detention on Manus, halts the opportunity for a long awaited independent examination of the practice of offshore immigration detention by consecutive Australian Governments. Tim O’Connor of…

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Budget 2017: Another missed opportunity for Australia and for refugees

  The Government’s 2017 Budget falls short of making a significant contribution to addressing the global refugee crisis, the Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA) says. “Although the increase in the refugee intake provides a glimmer of hope for some, this Budget sadly misses the mark in creating meaningful and humane solutions for refugees and people seeking asylum,” RCOA chief executive officer Paul Power said.…

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Older refugees have most to lose from citizenship changes

People brought to Australia under the Federal Government’s refugee resettlement program have the most to lose from foreshadowed changes to the citizenship process, the Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA) says. RCOA chief executive officer Paul Power said the tougher English language requirements and the restrictions on the number of times an applicant can sit the citizenship test would most likely result in fewer former…

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