Click on subject of interest shown on the right under the heading "labels" to see all relevant posts

To look at letters (and some replies) sent to politicians and newspapers, scroll down the index on the right hand side and select the appropriate heading.

Note the blog allows multiple labelling and all letters to politicians are under "letters to pollies".

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Bellingen Community Markets Saturday 21 June 2014

Our stall at the Bellingen Community Markets on Saturday 21 June 2014.

The market experience on Saturday was heartening in that a number of people visiting the stall were sympathetic to our views and very willing to sign the petitions . We had several visitors who work directly with refugees or who are teachers or social workers . During the morning we collected a  substantial sum in donations .
There were a few bystanders passing who may have taken messages away via the publicity materials on view and it is possible that some visitors to the stall had their support for asylum seekers reinforced by the message that there are others who feel the same way as them.

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Sydney Morning Herald Poll- 75% support closing of shore detention centres 17 June 2014

Poll: Would you support the closure of the Manus Island and Nauru detention centres?

Total votes: 9995.
Poll closed 17 Jun, 2014

These polls are not scientific and reflect the opinion only of visitors who have chosen to participate.

Read more:


Another worthwhile petition from Amnesty International

The Australian Government’s offshore asylum seeker detention policy is kept secret from the people who pay for it: YOU.


Question - how to engage a wider audience to change attitudes on Asylum Seekers?

Lowy Institute survey on asylum seeker policy

Doug has made the following comment.

We heard the results of a survey recently of Australian's attitude to refugees and it was suggested that way more than half of us had no sympathy for these people and agreed with the governments policy. It appears we have a lot of work to do in the community to turn that attitude around. To my mind market stalls mostly only appeal to the converted minority and we need to find a way to engage with a wider audience.

John comments

If the questions had asked whether one supported the illegal detetion of people including children in substandard accommodation, after surviving torture and trauma in their own countries, fleeing with few possessions and legally appealing for Asylum one would hope the response might have been more sympathetic.

David Comments

This chart shows a bell curve which shows that attention to the middle ground could move attitudes from disagree to agree.

Steve Biddulph has said   "Don't fight your enemies ( there are no enemies) - grow your friends
..."Concentrate on the middle, the larger number of people who are merely less involved...When the middle moves everything changes. Aim for that"

Does anyone have any ideas to change opinions?  Please email with your ideas


Send a poem to your politicians

Judy sent poems to 150 Members of Parliament.

One of these follows

Some Politicians                          by Judith Rodriguez

To have preached even for a moment
that money matters
more than the good it buys
to have proclaimed the end of caring;
to have unmothered the State
                     and left orphans to the wind;

to have waged phony battle
on the homeless and fugitive,
the needy come to our door;
to have danced on a tally of the drowned
to have pursued the desperate
for electoral triumph;

these are your names
on the sea-bed at our shore gate
behind razor wire
among the fatherless
the trapped and the destitute
and among the separated families.

Please use this poem to bring pressure on your politician 
to be more compassionate and stop the cruelty to asylum seekers.

However it was reported at the meeting held on 1 June 2014 that six handwritten letters are more powerful than templates and emails,and will be read by the recipient.   

Phone calls are also more likely to get the message to the intended recipient.

Click on the button above "Ideas for letters and emails sent  to"