Amnesty International, of which I am a member, is calling for help to raise concerns with proposed changes to refugee policy under development by the Howard Government.
On 13 April 2006 the Federal Government announced harsh changes to the treatment of asylum seekers who arrive by boat.
Amnesty International Australia believes these changes undermine Australia's international human rights obligations. AIA is particularly concerned that:
asylum seekers who arrive by boat will be sent to offshore detention centres for processing, and even those determined to be refugees, will remain there indefinitely until a 'third country' accepts them;
boats of asylum seekers will be forced to return to the very places they fled, facing the risk of abuse, torture or worse;
children will be back in detention behind razor wire.
It is likely that these laws will be passed when Parliament sits again from 9 May. This is why I urge you to act quickly on this issue.
We have a very limited window to mobilise pressure on the government to stop this inhumanity. We could not do this without your support.
Take action now. Tell the Government that laws that deny basic human rights to refugees and asylum seekers are unacceptable.