Another twist. The latest on refugees: The Government are considering working with Tony Abbott to send asylum seekers overseas… again.
Just last week the High Court stopped the Government sending asylum seekers to Malaysia because, in short, it found that Australian law requires that minimum human rights standards be met in processing and protecting asylum seekers.
The answer? The Government and Tony Abbott would rewrite laws to remove those human rights requirements. Sounds like John Howard and Phillip Ruddock all over again? That’s because it is.
But it’s not a done deal yet. The Government could opt instead to manage asylum applications here in Australia, where it’s cheaper, faster and more humane. Replying to calls and emails from GetUp members this week, many Labor MPs and Senators have already broken rank, saying they would never stand for a return to the Howard Government’s cruel offshore processing.
The pressure is working – can you keep it up by making a quick call today?
Calling a politician’s office isn’t something most of us do every day. But last week when GetUp members got in touch with their representatives the response was overwhelmingly positive. In some cases MPs’ staff told GetUp members how important their phone calls were and how they wished they received more of them. Here’s what one member said about a making a call:
"Her receptionist seemed thrilled to hear from someone against the Howard plan, and it would seem that the Senator is looking for support to go against it. Fantastico!"
Even Immigration Minister Bowen himself recently said "the Pacific solution did not break the people smugglers’ business model. It broke the will and spirit of asylum seekers." Yet the same Labor party that has been so critical of John Howard’s offshore processing model is now considering embracing that same policy with Tony Abbott’s Coalition.
Click here to make a phone call to your Labor MP or Senator and let them know we mustn’t go back to Howard’s policies.
Thanks for all that you do,
the GetUp team.