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".

If you scroll down and cannot go further, look out for icon "Older Posts". Click on that to continue


Costs of detaining Asylum Seekers in Australia and offshore

Refugee Action Coalition Sydney

Detention costs

At the same time as Abbott is imposing cuts across the board, his budget devotes $8.3 billion over four years to locking up refugees—much of it to pay for dumping asylum seekers in the camps on Manus Island and Nauru. This enormous sum could completely reverse Abbott’s cuts to Medicare, welfare payments for under 30s, education and health combined over the next four years. It is a stark example of the government’s priorities.

Cost of detention per person a year (Souce: National Commission of Audit)
Detaining a single asylum seeker on Manus or Nauru costs $400,000 per year. Detention in Australia costs $239,000 per year. By contrast, allowing asylum seekers to live in the community while their claims are processed costs just $12,000 per year, one twentieth of the cost of the offshore camps, and even less if they are allowed the right to work.
Abbott and Morrison are running a scare campaign about refugees. They seek to paint refugees as “economic migrants”, “country shoppers” or worse, equate refugees with terrorists. In reality, approximately 90% of those who arrive by boat are legitimate refugees, and no refugee has ever been convicted of a terrorist offence in Australia.
Before the election, Abbott promised “no cuts to health, no cuts to education.” Scott Morrison’s arrogance and refusal to answer questions about Operation Sovereign Borders also shows this government’s lies and deceit on asylum seekers. The government clearly has plenty to hide.
Abbott loves to claim success in “stopping the boats”. He will use his claim that refugees are some kind of threat as a scapegoat to try to distract attention from the cuts in the budget—and the fact that the real threat to our living standards is the Liberal government.
Abbott claims that stopping the boats is about saving lives at sea. This is as ridiculous as his claim to being the “best friend” of Medicare, or of workers. Processing asylum claims in Indonesia and flying those found to be refugees to Australia would save lives, and cost a fraction of the cost of detention.
Keeping thousands of asylum seekers locked in camps to deter others is a miserable and cowardly act. Effectively this government is saying “no matter what horrors you’ve come from, we’ll treat you worse in Australia. So die somewhere else.”
Morrison’s claim that the government will save $2.5 billion by stopping the boats and being able to close detention centres is another lie. As the boats that arrived from Sri Lanka and India in July carrying 41 and 157 Tamil asylum seekers have shown, people fleeing persecution will continue to ask for help, no matter how cruel Australia tries to be. There is no need to cut welfare, make you pay for the doctor, increase the cost of your education, and slash funding to hospitals.
The government will continue to waste billions of dollars sending asylum seekers to the camps on Nauru and Manus Island until we demand humane policies.

No comments: