Archive for the ‘Asylum Seekers’ Category

MEDIA RELEASE: 23rd September, 2011: Other parties too afraid to take on controversial issues of limiting population growth and welcoming asylum seekers

22/09/2011

DARREN CHURCHILL

National President

darren.churchill@democrats.org.au

Tel: 0412 196 473

MEDIA RELEASE:   23rd September, 2011

Other parties too afraid to take on controversial issues of limiting population growth and welcoming asylum seekers

The Australian Democrats have launched a new campaign based on the need for limiting the growth of Australia’s population, while still meeting our international humanitarian obligations in regards to asylum seekers.

National President, Darren Churchill, in announcing the new campaign, called on other parties to stop ducking the issues when it comes to population limits.

“We know that some will accuse us of racism for recognising the environmental limits our continent imposes, but such detractors are wrong because we are simultaneously conducting a campaign in support of refugees. The two issues do not have to be in competition.

“To the contrary, we say that Australia can easily double its humanitarian intake if we are prepared to substantially cut back the numbers of business migrants entering the country. There are 1.5m unemployed or underemployed Australians, and they should instead be given the necessary training to allow them to fill job vacancies, for instance in the mining industry.

“With Labor and Liberal Parties playing variations on a theme of trying to avoid our asylum seekers obligations there is a great need for parliamentary representation from a party that wants to uphold those obligations but which recognises – unlike the Greens – that we can’t take all comers.

“However, as a nation we must also recognise that we cannot grow our population endlessly. Only 6% of Australian land is arable, and so much of that prime agricultural land is instead growing houses instead of crops or is being used to locate waste dumps, all as a consequence of population growth.

“The Australian Democrats is in the company of respected groups such as the Public Health Association and the General Synod of the Anglican Church of Australia in calling for limits to population” said Mr Churchill.

The full “Sustainable Population” statement can be read at: http://www.democrats.org.au/campaigns/towards_a_sustainable_population/

The “Compassion for Refugees” statement can be read at: http://www.democrats.org.au/campaigns/compassion_for_refugees

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Labor clueless, Libs plain mischievous, and Greens bleeding hearts on population and asylum seekers

01/08/2010

MEDIA RELEASE: Election 2010: Sunday, 1st August, 2010

Labor clueless, Libs plain mischievous, and Greens bleeding hearts on population and asylum seekers

The contenders for government and the contenders for balance of power in this election all fail on their policies relating to population and asylum seekers says the Australian Democrats’ lead Senate candidate in the ACT, Darren Churchill

“The ALP is playing games on the issue, giving the electorate the impression they understand their concerns but then refusing to address the issue of immigration numbers.

“The Liberals appear to have recognised public concerns in undertaking to reduce population, but are playing the race card by linking the very small numbers of so-called boat people to the reduction in immigration.

“And meanwhile the Greens seem to think that Australia can solve the world’s refugee problems with a welcome to anyone who wants to come, belieing any claim they might have to understanding environmental constraints.

“By contrast the Australian Democrats recognise that immigration substantially contributes to our population numbers and impacts on our environment.

“Last year’s 2.1% annual population growth rate was ahead even of countries like Indonesia, and two-thirds of that growth came from immigration.

“Australia must consider the environmental limits – low rainfall, increasing temperatures due to climate change, and infertile soils – when determining the right number of people this land can support.

“Unlike the Greens, we know that we cannot solve the world’s refugee problems, but by reducing overall immigration numbers we would be in a much better position to meet our humanitarian obligations for what is really a small number of asylum seekers.

“Julia Gillard does not want the baby bonus to be repealed or pared back, nor does she want immigration to be discussed, so she is not real in saying she does not want a big Australia.

“Australians really deserve better than what Labor, Liberal and the Greens have to offer,” said Mr Churchill

Further comment: Darren Churchill, Ph: 0412 196 473

MEDIA RELEASE: 7th July, 2010: Statement on asylum seekers

07/07/2010

MEDIA RELEASE

7th July, 2010

Statement on asylum seekers

The National Executive of the Australian Democrats has voted to strongly oppose the offshore processing and demonising of asylum seekers and calls on the Gillard Labor Government to:

· Acknowledge that seeking asylum from violence, war, famine, torture and persecution is legal under international law;

· Stand up against the misinformation that the Abbott Liberal opposition is peddling about asylum seekers and not to bow to political pressure to reverse the ALP’s commitment to our human rights obligations;

· Ensure that Australia lives up to its obligations under United Nations Conventions on Human Rights and Refugees;

· Provide an assurance that no asylum seeker will be sent back to an environment that will endanger their lives or result in persecution, torture or other harm;

· Ensure that the process of assessing claims for asylum is open to public scrutiny, including temporary detention of asylum seekers on the mainland for health and security assessment purposes and opening up the detention centres to NGO scrutiny and monitoring of the standards of living and compliance with human rights;

· Ensure the efficient and expedient processing of claims and limiting of detention to a short period whilst health and security assessments are made. Once it is determined that there is no health or security risk, move asylum seekers to community based accommodation whilst their claim is finalised providing financial and case work assistance until an outcome has be reached;

· Ensure a transparent appeals mechanism to ensure procedural fairness to those asylum seekers appealing against the refusal of their claim for refugee status;

· Ensure that those who are found to be legitimate refugees are given adequate financial and resettlement support including but not limited to Medicare and Centrelink benefits, Job seeker assistance and Education and Training support.

Further comment: National President, Julia Melland ph. 0431357585 or Australian Democrats Human Rights Spokesperson, Sandra Kanck, ph 08 8336 4114 or 0417 882 143