Video Transcript :
To The People of Australia,
As you know last week, RISE started the #BlockTheBill campaign after members of parliament in Australia’s lower house passed the bill for a lifetime ban of refugees coming by boat. The bill still has to be approved on the 22nd of November by the majority of Senators in the upper house in parliament before this discriminatory policy can become part of Australian law.
Thank you so much for supporting this campaign. It has received overwhelming responses and support from the public at the local and international level. Making the bill legal adds to the trauma and persecution of refugees coming to Australia to seek asylum so please continue all efforts to call and email or contact Senators – particularly cross-bench senators – in the upper house to block the bill.
This ban, if passed, would see refugees and asylum seekers in offshore detention palmed off to other countries. Australia as one of the wealthiest countries in the world, with one of the smallest numbers of asylum seekers, should not hand ball its responsibilities to other nations.
While the rest of the world turns a blind eye to the highest number of refugees being forcibly displaced globally since World War 2, we as a nation can do better. We can be an example to other nations and show them that we do not let our politicians continue barbaric and racist policies against refugees who are seeking sanctuary from persecution and harm.
People who have fled war, trauma and torture need long term security in order to restore their lives. The proposed legislation does more harm than good to refugees and asylum seekers. It adds major uncertainty to the lives of asylum seekers who have fled persecution and in turn exacerbates the trauma they have endured and continue to live through. Seeking asylum is not a crime and it is a right that is upheld by the law as well as the UN Refugee Convention, of which Australia is a signatory.
Rather than taking cues from divisive rhetoric propagated by racist extremists such as the One Nation Party, the Australian government should treat refugees and asylum seekers with respect and dignity.
On behalf of RISE and refugees and asylum seekers in Australia, Manus and Nauru, we urge you take a stand. Join with us and fight against these discriminatory policies that affect our community groups indefinitely. Contact your cross-bench senators now and tell them you stand with refugees and do not support the lifetime ban on refugees bill.
Spoken by Tania Canas, RISE member and Director.
Authorised: R.Fernandez, RISE.
Produced by Blueprint Studios – http://www.blueprintstudio.com.au/