Limited resources to address the global refugee crisis
The Refugee Council of Australia said that the refugee intake has increased slightly, but a humane solution to resettlement was not in the cards. In contrast, Canada has taken an inclusive approach towards refugees, resettling 40,000 people in 2016.
The Canadian model is focused on community sponsorship, with local communities cooperating to support new arrivals. Australia’s community support program is focused on shifting costs. For instance, sponsors are responsible for paying a bond and visa application fee, which has the potential to create tensions between refugees and their sponsors.
Detention centre funding
The Government has allocated $1.91 billion to immigration detention centres. The inhumane conditions at these facilities have been well-documented. Self-harm, suicide, and severe psychological distress are all too common, and yet the Government has allocated more money to a failing approach.
Australia needs to reconsider its policies, and perhaps look at what other countries, such as Canada, are doing. We cannot forget the reason why refugees flee their homelands. We cannot turn a blind eye to the negative impacts of mandatory detention. This is not a viable approach to the global refugee crisis.
BA (UNSW), LLB (Macquarie University) – Student at law.