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Refugee Council of Australia
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Home > News > The Medevac Legislation is working as intended and must be retained

The Medevac Legislation is working as intended and must be retained

The findings presented today by the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee are a clear indication that the Medevac legislation is functioning as intended and should be retained, the Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA) says.  

“The findings of the Inquiry were as expected, given the majority representation of Government members on the Committee,” said RCOA CEO, Paul Power.  “The case for repeal remains utterly unconvincing and politically driven, with clear evidence that these laws are fulfilling their purpose without causing any of the negative consequences the government predicted.” 

“This legislation has moved medical decision-making into the hands of medical professionals, exactly where it should be. As a result, people have received treatment they urgently required, without the negative consequences predicted by our Government.  Their attempts to stir up fear around these laws have clearly been proven a cynical political exercise. 

In February, this historic legislation was brought in as the result of a groundswell of public support and politicians of conscience drawing a line in the sand. The Government’s cruel attempt to repeal this legislation ignores the needs of the people in question.  

We strongly urge Senators to heed the recommendations of the many submissions outlining the need for this legislation- and the evidence that it is functioning as intended- and vote against this repeal.”   

RCOA’s submission was one of over 100 submitted to this Inquiry.  It outlined the lack of adequate medical care in offshore detention, the deteriorating conditions, the impact on the people detained, the serious and chronic blocks to people receiving the treatment doctors recommended and improvements to that urgent medical transfer system since the introduction of the Medevac legislation.   

Media enquiries: Laura Stacey 0488 035 535 

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