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Refugees and Asylum Seekers

asylumseekers 675

refugees forever 150In Australia, conversation about people who seek asylum often feels disconnected from the people – the real flesh and blood people – whose lives are most affected. The reasons for this are complicated and contested., writes Good Samaritan Sister Sarah Puls.

Thursday, 05 May 2016 12:10

Asylum seekers battle stress

wire fence 2Delays in processing visa applications and “punitive” government policies have a profound effect on the mental health of refugees and asylum seekers, according to a local psychologist who specialises in the area.

Thursday, 05 May 2016 08:31

Respect PNG law and international law

CRAL logo 150Catholic Religious Australia urges the Australian Government to respect Papua New Guinea law and international law and end indefinite mandatory offshore detention, following the recent decision by the Papua New Guinea Supreme Court to declare illegal the detention of asylum seekers on Manus Island.

ACMRO logo150The decision of the Papua New Guinea Supreme Court that the detention of asylum seekers on Manus Island is illegal is a welcome sign of hope for those currently in detention on Manus Island, Fr Maurizio Pettenà, Director of the Australian Catholic Migrant and Refugee Office.

JRS logo150The recent decision by the PNG government to shut the Manus Island detention centre has presented the Australian government with stark choices.

Monday, 18 April 2016 23:51

“Build bridges, not walls”

Pope Francis in LesbosThe welcome given by Pope Francis to refugees that he brought back with him to the Vatican is a reminder that we have a moral obligation to offer refugees protection, emphasises Jesuit Refugee Service Australia in a media release.

unicef animatedUNICEF launched a series of animated films to help frame positive perceptions towards millions of children and young people on the move globally, emphasising that every child has rights and deserves a fair chance, according to a media release.

Thursday, 24 March 2016 11:13

Easter brings hope and peace

Fr Aloysius Mowe sj150The Easter Proclamation speaks of the children of Israel being led out of bondage and of Christ breaking chains. How do we hear that with any equanimity when people who seek safety from persecution and conflict continue to be subjected to the cruelties of a botched offshore processing policy, writes Father Aloysius Mowe sj, Director of Jesuit Refugee Service Australia.

those who came across the seasThe Sisters of St Joseph in North Sydney participated in a training session to prepare them to help harbour asylum-seekers that the Turnbull government tries to force back to Nauru or Manus Island, reports The Sydney Morning Herald.

refugees forever 150The Social Justice Committee of the Conference of Leaders of Religious Institutes in NSW or CLRI(NSW) has published its March 2016 edition of Just In Time which focuses on Australia's offshore detention policy.

soc justice statement 2015 cvrWomen and girls comprise about half of any refugee, internally displaced or stateless population across the world, writes Maeve Brown, Shelter Project Coordinator at Arrupe Place.

refugee detentionDarwin diocese vicar general Father Malcolm Fyfe msc who works closely with asylum seekers in detention has called on the Prime Minister to end their incarceration and pitched his own policy proposal of deterrence and defence surveillance.

Thursday, 25 February 2016 16:01

Arrupe Place wins community award

jrs zest awardsThe Arrupe Place project of Jesuit Refugee Service Australia (JRS) has been awarded the "Exceptional Community Partnership in a LGA" at the 2016 Zest Awards presented at ANZ Stadium, Olympic Park on February 24, according to a report on the JRS website.

soc justice statement 2015 cvr"Asylum seekers should never be used as pawns in defence of Australia's borders," said Marcelle Mogg, CEO Catholic Social Services Australia (CSSA), who called on Australians to urge political leaders to abandon their current stance of using vulnerable people as a deterrent to others and create immigration policies that uphold the rights and dignity of people seeking asylum.

Friday, 19 February 2016 11:52

Being cruel to be kind

Fr Jim Carty smWhy mince words in the face of the intentional brutality being inflicted by Australia on asylum-seekers, including children, imprisoned in our offshore detention centres? Marist Father Jim Carty reflects on our complicity in immigration detention of children and social sin.

good shepherd sisters logoFollowing the High Court's decision upholding the legality of offshore detention, the Sisters of the Good Shepherd in Australia have written to the Prime Minister to express deep concern for the wellbeing and ongoing care of asylum seekers and refugees who have been in Australia for medical assistance. 

sosj logo 150In a clear sign of solidarity, Josephites have joined with churches and other religious congregations to offer sanctuary to asylum seekers facing deportation to Nauru.

soc justice statement 2015 cvrFollowing the Australian High Court's dismissal of a challenge to the legality of offshore detention, Catholic groups in alliance with other organisations have denounced the government's plans to return 267 vulnerable people seeking asylum to Nauru and offered support for those seeking church sanctuary.

Monday, 11 January 2016 09:42

The Year of Mercy and migrants-refugees

soc justice statement 2015 cvrIn celebrating the Year of Mercy in the East Asia-Oceania region, we can also ponder our response to the migrant and refugee crisis in our own countries, said Salesian Father Vaclav Klement.

Monday, 14 December 2015 17:00

JRS USA recognises Sister Denise Coghlan rsm

Sr Denise Coghlan at workIn an award ceremony in New York, Jesuit Refugee Service USA honours the work of Sister Denise Coghlan, a Mercy Sister from Brisbane, who has served the displaced in Cambodia for the past 25 years and founded JRS Cambodia, according to a news report on the congregation website.

Sr Jane Keogh csb2Brigidine Sister Jane Keogh is holding a peaceful protest in front of Parliament House for the 26 days leading up to Christmas to show solidarity with asylum seekers and refugees in detention, reports the Canberra Times.

handshake welcomeAs the Year of Mercy begins, Catholic Religious Australia (CRA) offers a prayer for use in liturgical celebrations for the 3rd Sunday of Advent (and beyond) to intercede for children in immigration detention.

Sr Brigid on The ProjectThe Brigidine Asylum Seekers Project (BASP), run by the Brigidine Sisters, that took children in immigration detention on outings has been deemed "not appropriate" by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, reports the ABC.

lovemakesaway claude grp 150CRA Justice Network co-ordinator Fr Claude Mostowik msc was arrested and removed from the premises with eight other Christians after a peaceful sit-in at Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s electoral office in Edgecliff to call for the end of child detention, reports The Catholic Weekly.

smh ad150An outcome of the 15 October 2015 meeting in Canberra between interfaith leaders and politicians on refugee and asylum seeker policy is a cross-party, interfaith taskforce. Among its initiatives is an open letter to politicians that appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald on the 28th of November urging them to release children from detention for Christmas.

acrt logoTwelve church leaders, who met in Brisbane on Friday, 20 November are calling on the new leader in Australia to show leadership when it comes to discussing the people seeking asylum at Christmas Island, and an put end to the secrecy and dehumanising language used.

CRAL logo 150A new survey by Catholic Religious Australia (CRA) has confirmed the high levels of support provided by religious congregations to refugee and asylum seekers in Australia, which fly in the face of fears these people are a burden on the taxpayer, with their needs being met through concerted localised support.

Thursday, 29 October 2015 11:58

Children in detention digital resource kit

asrc kids outThe Redemptorists have produced a digital resource kit to advocate for the end of child detention which can be used beyond Children's Week and the Day of Solidarity on 29 October 2015.

CRAL logo 150In a media release on 26 October, Catholic Religious Australia (CRA) welcomed the offer of trauma-related counselling and practical support from the Australian Bishops to Abyan and to other women in similar horrific situations and echoed the call for an end to refugee detention.

Monday, 19 October 2015 13:28

Seeking a better way forward

Canberra leaders 3 smallAn outcome of a meeting between Church leaders and Parliamentarians at Parliament House, organised by Catholic Religious Australia (CRA), is the establishment of a cross-party, interfaith taskforce to look at a better way forward for the treatment of refugees and asylum seekers, reports just Mercy.

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