For many years now AWCH has advocated against the mandatory detention of children who are seeking asylum in Australia. The Australian Government, recognising the serious negative impact of detaining children who are claiming asylum has made a commitment to have no children in detention by 30 June 2011. That time draws close with still 1073 children remaining in detention centres around Australia and on Christmas Island as reported on 26 May 2011 in the National Times .
So what can be done? What can we, as AWCH members, do to ensure that children who arrive on our shores seeking protection have the same rights as our own Australian children particularly in the area of health and wellbeing?
First of all you can familiarise yourself with the facts so that you can have that well informed discussion. The Refugee Council of Australia and Chilout are both good sources. There are many myths floating around so become a myth buster – checkout the myths at the Refugee Council of Australia You can take action and join the GetUp Campaign and support the call for a national children’s commissioner at Early Childhood Australia. You can add a comment to this post, comment on AWCH Facebook page or write a letter to your local MP
Let’s keep the pressure up and see if collectively we can be successful in having no children in immigration detention by June 30.