Tuesday, August 28, 2007

"The Pacific Solution: A $1 billion ‘living hell’" - Oxfam report

Six years since the Tampa crisis of the 2001 Federal election, urgent reform of Australia’s asylum seeker policies is called for after a new report published on August 27 found that the Pacific Solution had so far squandered $1 billion of taxpayers’ money, exacerbated mental illness of refugees and was operating without scrutiny.

‘A Price Too High: The cost of Australia’s approach to Asylum Seekers,’ a joint report by Oxfam and A Just Australia, presents new research that found since 2001 it has cost the Australian taxpayer more than $500,000 per person to process fewer than 1,700 asylum seekers in Nauru, Manus and Christmas Island. By comparison, the latest estimate from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship suggests that the cost of holding asylum seekers in a mainland Australian detention centre is only 3.5% of the running costs of the Pacific Solution.

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