This resource, developed by the Uniting Church in Australia, includes materials on asylum seeker and refugee issues. It is an invitation to consider your vote in the 2013 Federal Election in terms of what we need to do, as individuals and as a nation, to ensure a just society – one that is focussed on the good of all people and the planet, now and into the future. We hope that you will find it a helpful resource as you consider the values which underpin the policies of the political parties and candidates who are asking us to give them the responsibility of national leadership. See the full document.
Of particular interest to the Australian Churches Refugee Taskforce are the following extracts from the full document:
Protecting the Persecuted: Justice for asylum seekers and refugees
In the Hebrew Scriptures God is often identified as the God who cares for the exiled and the stranger. God brings justice to the oppressed and calls on the people of faith to care for the strangers and aliens in their midst as they care for each other. Refugees are identified in the Bible with widows and orphans as the most marginalised people, the most at risk, and the test of faithful obedience to God was how a community or individuals cared for these most vulnerable people. Hospitality to the stranger therefore became one of the strongest moral forces in ancient Israel. To read on, download this document.
Children in Immigration Detention
Australia is the only developed country that has a policy of mandatory detention of all “unauthorised arrivals”, including children. There are moral and humane alternatives. These children have not been detained “as a measure of last resort.” There is no legitimate justification for this policy. To read on, download this document.
Asylum seekers and offshore processing
Why is this an election issue? The politicisation of asylum seekers has continued unabated over the last 3 years – extremely vulnerable people fleeing persecution, including children, are being used to score political points about ‘stopping the boats’. To read on, download this document.