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Newsletter for 12 June 2018 Rural Australians for Refugees Bellingen and Nambucca Districts

Fundraising concert report
Roadside demonstration: Thursday 14th June at the Big Banana. 2.30 to 4.00 pm
Our next market stall: Coffs Harbourside market,  Sunday 17th June
Dying refugee on Nauru denied treatment in Australia

Fundraising concert report

Sunday’s concert was a truly uplifting and enjoyable occasion which was greatly appreciated by the audience.  Heather Rose’s introductory song, in recognition of the nature of the event, was an amazing rendition of “Imagine” , accompanied by Ken McKelvie on the didgeridoo and Micklo Jarret  with his quiet, haunting translation into the Gumbaynggir language. Heather played  a wide range of pieces from Mozart, Chopin, Beethoven to Fats Waller, which the audience loved. The Wild Women of Anywhere Beach opened their set with a beautiful song about refugees which they had written  for the occasion, and concluded with the hilarious “Chicken song”.  The concert made a profit of $1,355, to which we have added $145 from donations and profits from recent markets, enabling us to make a donation of $1500 to the Asylum Seekers Centre in Newtown, Sydney, which is a great outcome.
A huge thank you to our performers, to our gang of volunteers who made it all work on the day, and to everyone who attended.
If anyone has any creative ideas about future fundraising activities, then do please get in touch with us at:

Roadside demonstration: Thursday 14th June at the Big Banana. 2.30 to 4.00 pm

Our next roadside demonstration is this Thursday in Coffs Harbour, in front of the Big Banana. We would be greatly cheered to see a good turnout for the demo at this very popular location, so please join us if you can. We will not see any significant change in the policies of the main parties unless and until they wake up to the fact that there are millions of Australians who want the indefinite, cruel detention of people languishing on Manus and Nauru to come to an end. As far as politicians are concerned, the issue is solely about votes, a situation in which offshore detainees are simply collateral damage.  We must continue to do all we can to  shift the debate towards a recognition of our responsibilities and towards compassion for this relatively small number of people who have suffered enormously at the hands of our government, with the tacit support of the Opposition.

Our next market stall: Coffs Harbourside market,  Sunday 17th June

Our next market is this coming Sunday at the Coffs Harbourside market, located near the jetty, from 9.00 am until 1.30 pm.  If you can help out for an hour or two, that would be greatly appreciated. Please let Mike know by emailing him at:

Dying refugee on Nauru denied treatment in Australia

A 63-year-old man, who has advanced lung cancer , has recently been denied transfer to Australia for palliative care in the remaining months of his life. He has been  offered a transfer to Taiwan, but he has declined the offer because he is concerned that there will be no translator for him – he is a Hazara -  and that there would be no one to perform the Shia Muslim rituals and ceremonies on his body when he dies. As an alternative, our government has offered him $25,000 to return to Afghanistan, even though he has been recognised as a refugee and therefore cannot be sent back there. Australia is legally obliged to protect him. Australian Border Force officials on Nauru have made repeated requests to Canberra for intervention in his case, but to no avail. As in so many other cases, these requests are routinely overruled by bureaucrats in Dutton’s department.
The government’s inflexibility and intransigence  in denying a dying man some comfort in his final months of life is utterly cruel and completely unnecessary. Please consider contacting Dutton’s office to urge him to show some compassion and to allow this Afghani refugee to be transferred to Australia to receive palliative care.
Telephone: 02 6277 7860 or 07 3205 9977.   Email: Peter.Dutton.MP

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