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Protect children from detention: Greens.

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Wednesday 24 September 2008

Protect children from detention: Greens

Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young has called on Immigration Minister Chris Evans to ensure that children are not being detained, and will not be detained, under the Minister’s recently announced key immigration values.

The Immigration Department today confirmed that children and their families could be detained in secure facilities, in answer to a question posed at a hearing of the Migration Joint Standing Committee.

“These children may have been freed from life behind razorwire, but some could still have their every move monitored while in transitional care and other types of detention,” said Senator Hanson-Young.

“This is not the free, happy life we take as given for our own children. We must find a better solution for those who come to Australia in such need.”

Senator Hanson-Young also reiterated her call for the Government to inquire into the psychological effects of detention on children, and to provide support for previously detained children who are now living in the Australian community.

“The Department today admitted that these children are not their responsibility once they are released into the community,” said Senator Hanson-Young.

“This is simply not good enough.

“The Greens recognise that beyond changing the policy and practices of the past, we must also work to address the effects of those policies and practices.

“We must ensure that adequate support, in whatever form, is provided for those who have been wrongly treated. We cannot simply turn the pages on this dark chapter in Australia’s history books,” said Senator Hanson-Young.

For more information: Gemma Clark on 0427 604 760