Monthly Archives: May 2016

ABC NewsRadio: The Business of Offshore Detention

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Last week, the Papua New Guinea Government made the decision to close the Manus Island detention centre, after the PNG Supreme Court ruled that the facility was in breach of the Constitution.

The Australian Government is now working out where to place the 800 detainees who remain at the centre.

The Spanish conglomerate that’s about to take over responsibility for running the facility—as well as the one on Nauru—says in the future, it wants to get out of the business entirely.

The company, Ferrovial, succeeded last week in a takeover bid for the current contract holder Broadspectrum. Activist groups have lobbied Broadspectrum shareholders to divest from the company because of its role in offshore detention.

Shen Narayanasamy, Executive Director of the group, No Business in Abuse says ‘from Ferrovial’s perspective, to be complacent in the abuse of women and children is an enormous risk’.

By | 2018-01-04T16:13:42+10:00 May 5th, 2016|Front - Campaigns, No Business in Abuse|

Press Release: Self-immolation tragedies on Nauru direct result of cruel refugee policy

MAY 5 2016: A 21-year-old Somali refugee has set herself alight on Nauru in what is the second attempted self-immolation on the island in a week.

Misha Coleman, Executive Officer of the Australian Churches Refugee Taskforce said:

“People are not seeking attention – they are trying to end their lives.

“After years on Nauru, with absolutely no end in sight, their depression is so acute that ending their lives appears to them to be their only “resettlement option”.

“The system is designed to break the spirit of refugees to give up on their right to seek asylum. They have no hope and this tragedy is the result.

“There are other options Prime Minister. No other country in the world has a policy as cruel as this. Enough!

“Statements from the Government of Nauru blaming victims and advocates are a sad reflection of the influence of money in the relationship with the Australian Government that ignores human rights,” Ms Coleman said.

Media contact: Peter Stahel 0408 584 439

Press Release: National Day of Prayer to be held for Mothers of the Young Men on Manus

MAY 4 2016: The Australian Churches Refugee Taskforce is calling a National Day of Prayer for every mother who has a son or daughter in one of Australia’s offshore detention centres, to coincide with Mother’s Day on May 8th.

The Very Reverend Dr Peter Catt of St. John’s Anglican Cathedral in Brisbane, and Chairperson of the Taskforce says “As we cherish and hold in prayer our own mothers this Sunday, we must also be challenged to acknowledge and pray for the mothers who are the victims of our border politics”.

“Mothers of refugees are very significant in the biblical narrative, including the mother of Moses and the mother of Jesus.”

“They are the all-too-forgotten victims of detention policies, who must live with the daily uncertainty about their children’s freedom, safety and health.”

The day of prayer was called following the announcement that the Supreme Court of PNG has determined the offshore processing centre Manus Island to be illegal.

The future of the young men who have been languishing on Manus is uncertain.

Advocates across the country, using the hashtag #BringThemHere, say the men should have been brought to Australia long ago.

Executive Officer of the Taskforce, Misha Coleman said that “as a mother myself, watching the Four Corners expose on the death of a young man in our care on Manus Island ( April 25th) really made me think about the impact offshore detention camps such as Manus Island have on mothers of asylum seekers.

Churches, clergy and parishioners who want to join the prayers, in their own church at their own time, can do so easily by registering at

Media Inquiries and comment:

Misha Coleman, Executive Officer, Australian Churches Refugee Taskforce, 0428 399 739

The Very Rev’d Dr Peter Catt, Chair, Australian Churches Refugee Taskforce, 0404 052 494


By | 2018-01-04T16:13:42+10:00 May 4th, 2016|Front - News, Press Releases|

ABC NewsRadio: ‘So many other people at risk’ in detention on Nauru, says Australian Churches Refugee Taskforce

A 21-year-old refugee has set herself on fire on Nauru. ‘So many other people at risk’ in detention on Nauru, says Australian Churches Refugee Taskforce, after second refugee sets themself on fire in a week. Download audio

By | 2018-01-04T16:13:43+10:00 May 3rd, 2016|Front - Hot Topics, TV and Radio|