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


Darwin Detention - people need your help

Dear Friend,
Today there are more people locked up in detention in Darwin than ever before – people who need your help.
Here at DASSAN we are expecting things to get even worse in the next month or two. Although many asylum seekers have recently been released into the community on temporary visas, more desperate people are being brought into Darwin every day.  Many have already spent months or years in other detention centres.
Wickham Point has become the camp for people who are re-detained (often without any reason being given), for those with health and medical issues, and for others with complex histories.
DASSAN has always been run solely by volunteers with no funding – and we've achieved a huge amount – but now we can't keep up with the demand. To meet the growing needs DASSAN recently commissioned a report.  This strongly recommended we need to employ someone with expert advocacy skills to build, train and support our team of volunteer advocates to meet this increasingly urgent and complex work load.
With your help we can employ an experienced and effective advocate in Darwin right here, right now. We have in principle long term support for this new position from a number of organisations and individuals working to defend human rights in Australia, but it will take time to establish the framework needed for their support to flow in. The needs of asylum seekers in detention in Darwin are URGENT. Will you make a contribution to help us now?
We are seeking donations to enable us to employ this expert advocacy co-ordinator for the next six vital months. This will keep the work going until we are able to advertise and fund a permanent position.
Every contribution will make a difference in the lives of the 1000 plus desperate detainees (including children) locked up in Wickham Point and Bladin Camps right on our doorstep.
You can donate to our crowd funding site at Chuffed, or  donate by direct deposit to DASSAN , Bendigo Bank, BSB: 633-000, Account Number :143875664 - please write 'advocacy major appeal' in donation details
Your money won't be buying clothes for asylum seekers, it will be buying them a voice. For the 1000 asylum seekers detained in Darwin, there is no formal organisation with a mandate to provide advocacy. This new position will enable DASSAN to provide formal individual and systematic advocacy for men, women and children in detention in the Northern Territory. Our work has already begun.
For every hour our Coordinator is working, there will be dozens of DASSAN volunteers spending time amplifying the impact of that work. For every asylum seeker visited, there will be someone to assist in lodging complaints and organising access to medical or legal services. For every person in detention suffering human rights violations or from stalled processing, there will be a designated point of contact to follow up and make sure they receive the care they need.
Your support through a once off donation or a regular monthly commitment will ensure this work continues and grows. You will be supporting a dedicated team of volunteers.
In the past twelve months DASSAN has assisted over 700 asylum seekers with visits and advocacy on health issues and conditions in detention. Our volunteers have assisted hundreds of asylum seekers gain legal representation, prevented forcible transfers to offshore facilities for medical reasons and forcible returns to countries of origin. DASSAN members have worked closely with lawyers to support class action litigation for groups of detainees, such as children born in detention post July 19.
There have been significant changes to the legislative regime governing asylum seeker detention and processing. However, Darwin will remain the hub for treatment of sick asylum seekers, and be the transfer point for re-detained people and complex cases, and the need for advocacy will continue.
The Coordinator we employ will conduct training for volunteer advocates, and work with specialists from around the country to improve capacity for self-advocacy and outside advocates to conduct effective interventions. The Coordinator would also act as lead advocate in complex and urgent cases, and speak to Parliamentarians, advisory groups and the media where appropriate.
You can donate through our crowdfunding site or by direct deposit to DASSAN , Bendigo Bank, BSB: 633-000, Account Number :143875664 - please write 'advocacy major appeal' in donation details
Some of the common issues that require our advocacy support include:

  • Unreasonable delay or denial of medical treatment for sick detainees
  • Transfers with minimal notice to other onshore or offshore detention facilities
  • Inadequate access to nutritious food outside mealtimes for pregnant women and young children
  • Lack of access to legal advice
  • Information about and assistance with complaints procedures
  • Low capacity for self advocacy within detention
  • Arbitrary rules and lack of information, constantly shifting interpretation of rules
We have a team of advocates already working and a coordinator standing by to support them who with your help will start work in February. The need is URGENT. Please Please share with your friends and encourage them to support those who most need it now.

With hope and determination

The DASSAN team

we acknowledge the Larrakia people, traditional owners and custodians of the country on which we live and work

until we are all free, none of us are free

No comments: