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Found 8 results

  1. Now this should raise an eyebrow or two .....the documentary Leaky Boat on ABC1 Thursday 8.30 WA time , followed by Stopping the Boats Q & A ........sounds like John Howard swept this scandal under the rug .........433 refugees turned away ,refugees throwing their children into the sea.........should be interesting viewing .........10 years on and is the truth about to come out .....?..:policeman:
  2. "Unwelcome mat still out for many foreigners. Today's Australia is the sum total of many nationalities, but it is still not an easy country in which to be a migrant..... ...It would be impossible, given their history, for Australians not to have an uneasy relationship with race, with national identity and with immigration. Australia's murky past is not that distant: until the 1970s a ''white Australia'' policy was enforced to restrict the inflow of non-white immigrants. Australia's non-indigenous population represents more than 95 per cent of the total, and a quarter of its residents are foreign-born, but still this is not an easy country to emigrate to. Even British people for whose trade or skill Australia has little demand are excluded. Australia has an island mentality, and to the boat people from such war-torn countries as Sri Lanka and Afghanistan, hoping to start new lives there, it shouts, with less and less ambiguity, ''Warra, Warra!'' The vast majority of these afflicted peoples do not even make it to the mainland, being detained on Christmas Island, in the Indian Ocean, for ''processing'', a word with uncomfortably Orwellian connotations. Politicians exploit this insularity for their own ends: in the last election, and indeed the last several elections, immigration - especially the issue of boat people - has dominated political discourse. Rather like healthcare in America, it has split liberal and conservative Australia beyond its traditional party affiliations. Zealous anti-immigration political figures have emerged, such as Pauline Hanson, former leader of the One Nation Party, who, in her first speech before Parliament in 1996, said: ''I believe we are in danger of being swamped by Asians … a truly multicultural country can never be strong or united.''..... ...Dame Edna summed it up when she said: ''I'm not racist; I like all races, especially white people.'' Hanson's belief that a truly multicultural and cosmopolitan country is not a strong one is misguided. Australia, despite the residual tensions and occasional conflicts, is multicultural, and it is stronger for this reason. For if ''white Australia'' still exists in the hearts of a small but not minuscule minority, there is a new Australian identity made up of varied ethnic groups. They are Greek, Lebanese, Irish, English, Indian, Chinese, Vietnamese and Australian. And Australia is them." Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/unwelcome-mat-still-out-for-many-foreigners-20110630-1gsun.html#ixzz1Qm1u6lUP
  3. Australia the Lucky Country without Meaningful Debate Lucky Country a land of myths. THE policy debate is dominated by some monster lies and old-fashioned bogeymen. IT is a cathartic experience announcing your looming retirement, as I did this month. Having spent 21 of my 44 years as a dreaded lobbyist for the tourism, transport, property and infrastructure sectors, I decided it was time to step off the stage for a while. Declaring your innings temporarily over brings with it a liberated perspective. This is lubricated by the experience the nation has been through in our federal election and its aftermath. I want now to reflect on some pressing issues facing the nation and tackle some of the myths that dominate economic and social public policy debate. ► We can’t afford a big Australia. Wrong. The most depressing, and dishonest, argument permeating politics is that Australia is unable to cope with population growth, and it’s one that has forged a coalition of the far-Left and far-Right. We are a smart nation, blessed with a magnificent natural and human capacity and, with investment in urban and regional infrastructure, we can sustain a bigger population. Young, migrant nations such as ours are growing or they are shrinking. There is no in-between status. Traffic congestion and social division are genuine considerations and we do need some limits on growth, but we cannot allow poor planning in Sydney and southeast Queensland, or bigotry, to dominate the debate……
  4. Principles:----> The Australian Greens believe that: 1. the presence in Australia of people of many cultural backgrounds greatly enriches our society and should be celebrated. 2. Australian society, culture and the economy has benefited, and will continue to benefit, from immigration of people from around the world. 3. immigration must be non-discriminatory on the grounds of nationality, ethnic origin, religion, language, gender, disability, sexuality, age or socioeconomic background. 4. Australia has humanitarian and legal obligations to accept refugees and reunite families. 5. asylum seekers and refugees are no more of a threat to our borders or to society than anyone else and must be treated with compassion and dignity. 6. Australia must assess in good faith all asylum seekers who arrive on our mainland or any of our islands, without discrimination based on the method of arrival. Goals The Australian Greens want: 7. an immigration program that is predominantly based on family reunions and other special humanitarian criteria as defined by international human rights Conventions. 8. all migrants to be given access to a full range of culturally sensitive, appropriate health services including a comprehensive medical examination on arrival. 9. services for new migrants to include appropriate English language classes, social security, legal and interpreter services, programs to ease transition to Australia's multicultural society, and post-trauma counselling where needed. 10. the elimination of the policies of mandatory detention, and other forms of harsh, punitive or discriminatory treatment of asylum seekers and refugees. 11. asylum seekers who arrive without a valid visa to have their claims for asylum assessed while living in the community. 12. planning for climate change refugees with a particular focus on the Asia-Pacific region. Measures The Australian Greens will: 13. ensure that potential immigrants are not unfairly discriminated against on any grounds. 14. increase the share of places for off-shore refugees and humanitarian entrants. 15. ensure that funding for public and community sector agencies providing migrant-specific services is increased to a level sufficient to provide adequate, effective and timely support. 16. ensure the development of networks, materials and programs that increase community understanding of the causes and benefits of migration. 17. abolish mandatory and indefinite detention of asylum seekers. 18. abolish discriminatory separation of refugees into permanent and temporary visa categories based on whether or not they arrived with a valid visa. 19. abolish the 'seven day rule' legislation whereby asylum seekers cannot gain a permanent protection visa if they have spent seven days in a third country. 20. restore the Australian migration zone to match Australia's territory and accept responsibility for processing all asylum seekers who seek Australia's protection within the migration zone. 21. ensure asylum seekers are fully informed of their rights on arrival and given immediate access to legal assistance. 22. restore asylum seekers' legal right to challenge decisions that affect them in the courts. 23. replace the current system of humanitarian visas (granted only by the Immigration Minister after rejection as a refugee) with an open, accountable humanitarian visa process incorporating a humanitarian review tribunal. 24. house asylum seekers who arrive without a valid visa in publicly owned and managed open reception centres, where entry and exit to these centres are unrestricted except where prohibited for medical or security reasons specified in clause 28. 25. ensure that initial assessment of refugee status is completed within 90 days. 26. grant asylum seekers an asylum application visa (AAV) and assist without delay their move into the community provided medical and security checks are satisfied or after 14 days has passed, whichever occurs first. 27. ensure asylum seekers living in the community while their claim is assessed will be granted an AAV which will entitle them to travel, work, income support and access to ongoing educational and medical services anywhere within Australia while their claims for asylum are assessed. 28. deny an AAV if security checks demonstrate the person poses a serious criminal threat to the Australian community or if the person has not remained housed in the reception centre while the medical and security checks were completed. 29. ensure that refusal to grant an AAV is reviewable at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. 30. house those people refused an AAV in separate, appropriate, publicly owned and managed facilities close to urban areas. 31. ensure that, if refugee status is refused and the person cannot be repatriated, the AAV will remain in force until he or she can be repatriated. 32. ensure that the number of AAVs given to asylum seekers who arrive without a valid visa has no impact on the prescribed number of off-shore refugee and humanitarian entrants that Australia accepts. 33. support skilled migration programs that do not drain critical skills from other countries and do not substitute for training or undermine wages and conditions in Australia. 34. ensure that Australia adequately contributes to the funding of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR). 35. ensure that Australia adopts a definition of environmental refugee in its assessment criteria and works in the UN system for inclusion of a definition in the United Nations Refugee Convention. 36. ensure that no family unit is forcibly separated by the Australian assessment processes. 37. grant the families of approved asylum seekers permission to migrate to Australia for family reunions within a reasonable time, in accordance with the UNHCR humanitarian program.
  5. The politics of undercounting. THE nation is carrying about 800,000 more people than it had bargained for when Labor came to power in 2007. This is the gap between the modest official population projections that were publicly available at the time of the last election and the fertility and immigration booms for which no level of government was ready.... ....Our real problems begin here, with the almost comical inability of our institutions to correctly forecast the basics: how many maternity beds, childcare and school places, new houses and apartments, train, tram and bus services would be required to raise, educate, accommodate and transport the most vibrant developed nation on the planet. Opposition stoops to lies and excuses in race to the bottom on boatpeople. NEVER let what has actually been said get in the way of your argument. That appears to be opposition immigration spokesman Scott Morrison's new mantra after he was caught out denying the undeniable yesterday on the Ten Network's Meet the Press. Paul Bongiorno asked him: "(Tony Abbott) described (boat arrivals) as an invasion: isn't that playing on people's fears?" Morrison answered: "Tony did not say that; he said you were at risk of putting Australia in a situation where it is open." "He said peaceful invasion," Bongiorno responded.... Population surge linked to jobs growth. IF new Prime Minister Julia Gillard really wants to slow population growth, she will need to put the brakes on the economy first. Returning the budget to surplus immediately would work, as would encouraging her friends at the Reserve Bank to jack up interest rates. The government no longer has the tools to directly reduce or increase the migration rate. Leading ANU demographer Peter McDonald gets irritated by the way so many people see population growth as somehow independent of the economy. Both migration -- and, to a much greater extent than generally realised, fertility rates -- are products of economic conditions. Migration is a function of labour demand. It slumps following recessions and booms in the good times.....
  6. Following is an excellent article from Peter van Onselen who has worked for members of The Liberal party, i.e. conservative: Who's afraid of 4500 boatpeople? BOTH of the main political parties are keen to display their toughness on border protection, so much so that they seem to have lost sight of the plight of the people who are trying to make their way here in rickety boats. Why are we so concerned about the 4500 or so boatpeople who have attempted to seek asylum in Australia since the ALP was elected about 2 1/2 years ago? And let's not forget that right now Australia houses about 50,000 visa overstayers, mostly from the US, Britain and China. But the political debate is centred on boatpeople, partly because it plays into people's (inaccurate) fears about hordes of arrivals from underdeveloped countries who threaten our way of life, and partly because opinion polls continue to show that most Australians oppose illegal immigration. Australians shouldn't be afraid of boatpeople trying to come to our country. Our geographical position means that their numbers will always be small compared with refugee migration in other parts of the world. It's time our politicians started to lead public opinion on this issue instead of following it. Bravo, apart from this demonising of refugees, foreigners, students, migrants, etc. it also makes Australians look like followers not leaders..... personally I do not have an opinion on refugees as I see issue as insignificant ... and gets a bit racist....
  7. Hardline attitude aids migration: Abbott. Tony Abbott has moved to portray his tough border protection stance as pro-immigration, arguing that it helps to maintain public support if people think immigration is controlled by the government rather than by people smugglers. More mealy mouthedness, like Rudd, both are terrified of offending racists and legacy of the 90s demonising refugees as political football or wedge issue. Like Cosgrove's speech last week, if they used their authority and led on such issues they may find the perceived audience would listen and obey, rather than follow bigots misinformed by media and related think tanks. Right time for zero tolerance. Authorities need to cut through the waffle talked about incidents of race-related violence.... The kind of leadership we need on this issue came this week from Peter Cosgrove, who is the very antithesis of a black-armband handwringer on this or any other issue. But with straight talk and plain language Cosgrove said it is undeniable that there is a small and ugly section of the Australian population that is demonstrably racist, and that in some instances, it's been Indians who have been victims of this racism. ..... In NSW, the Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione has been forced to increase officer numbers for Australia Day after the sickening spectacle last year, where alcohol-fuelled yahoos draped in our national ensign were monstering passers-by for refusing to kiss the flag or join the Aussie Aussie Aussie chorus, a song so lyrically bereft that it's amazing anyone is prepared to sing it publicly. Aussie I love it, but leave me out of the flag waving. Mark Seymour asks why some Australians are so keen to show off how much they love the place. ...... "Australia. Love it or leave it" ........ I think Australia is pretty good, but not that good. Warwick Thornton says he's deeply concerned that the Southern Cross is becoming a symbol of racism for some Australians. The filmmaker, who has been chosen as the Northern Territory's nomination for Australian of the Year, wants people to spend Australia Day reflecting on the symbolic significance of the national icon. "Aboriginal people have used the Southern Cross for the last 40,000 years as a beacon guiding them to travel through country for survival, and I'm starting to see that star system symbol being used as a very racist nationalistic emblem - and that is seriously worrying me," Thornton said. "We don't want to turn the Southern Cross into a swastika - that's bloody important. Nationalists everywhere, including media, advertising industry and governments, have hijacked Australian icons. Past 15 - 20 years this has included flag, Gallipoli, ANZACS, bush myths, or inverting them e.g. scare stories about Republic, refugees, immigrants, stress upon English versus NESBs and multiculturalism etc.
  8. Guest

    Refugees and taxes

    Refugees spark welfare rush Refugees have driven up the total annual cost of Centrelink benefits by nearly 40 percent to an estimated $628 million in just two years. Looks like Australia is heading in the same direction as the UK according to 9 news.