Migration

Viral letter to PM shows the people are united

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The Prime Minister’s rejection of the Australian Medical Association’s call for the transfer of the asylum seeker and refugee children and their families off Nauru has been swift but it hasn’t deterred us. Dr Sara Townend Brisbane Times Now, just over two weeks later, more than 5600 doctors and medical students from around the country say they agree. They’ve signed an open letter to the Prime Minister Scott Morrison. A letter we felt compelled to write because the situation on ... Read More »

‘I feel like an empty shell’: the patients left behind when MSF had to quit Nauru

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MSF says five years of ‘indefinite limbo’ endured by refugees and asylum seekers has led to a radical deterioration in mental health Helen Davidson and Saba Vasefi The Guardian On Thursday Médecins Sans Frontières took a rare step in front of the microphone and publicly criticised the Australian government, demanding an end to its offshore processing policy. Six days earlier its team of mental health workers had been forced by the Nauru government to abruptly stop work and leave the ... Read More »

Inside torture and trauma counselling sessions on Christmas Island

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For three years from 2011, social worker Poh Lin Lee worked as a trauma counsellor for the Christmas Island Torture and Trauma Service. RN – By Teresa Tan ABC She offered therapy and support to detained asylum seekers referred from the nearby detention centre, which closed this month. At her lowest, most conflicted moments she wondered who she was providing the care for. “It might be enough for someone to get through the next week or the next day, but for ... Read More »

UN: ‘health crisis’ demands closure of Australia’s offshore detention centres

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Government bears responsibility because it designed and paid for the systems in Nauru and Papua New Guinea, says UNHCR Naaman Zhou The Guardian The United Nations has called on Australia to immediately evacuate its offshore detention centres to prevent an unfolding health crisis. Doctors from Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) were ejected from Nauru on Wednesday and the UN high commissioner for refugees has warned that many asylum seekers who have attempted self-harm or have critical health issues now have no access ... Read More »

Bill Shorten: ‘We’ve got to end the climate change war’

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Exclusive: Marking five years as opposition leader, Shorten tackles thorny topics – energy, offshore detention and trade Katharine Murphy The Guardian Bill Shorten has signalled Labor will keep the national energy guarantee and maintain subsidies for households and businesses to install small-scale renewable energy until 2030, as the shadow cabinet prepares to deliberate on energy policy. In a wide-ranging interview marking five years as opposition leader, Shorten also revealed Labor was in talks with the Australian Medical Association about conditions ... Read More »

As doctors working on Nauru, we thought we were helping. Now I know we were not

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The ongoing human rights travesty that is indefinite mandatory offshore detention is antithetical to medical ethics Nick Martin The Guardian When I worked on Nauru as a medical officer for refugees and asylum seekers, I never saw myself as part of the problem. But since I returned to Australia I have increasingly come to question my role in a system that is antithetical to medical ethics. The ongoing human rights travesty that is indefinite mandatory detention and the treatment of asylum seekers there never ... Read More »

The man who lost Bavaria

27 September 2018, Bavaria, Munich: Markus Söder (CSU), Prime Minister of Bavaria, sits at the beginning of the last plenary session in the Bavarian parliament in his place in front of the Bavarian coat of arms hanging on the wall behind him. Photo: Peter Kneffel/dpa

The Bavarian premier’s tough line on migration may not save his party from losing votes on Sunday. By MATTHEW KARNITSCHNIG Politico INGOLSTADT, Germany — Markus Söder’s uncanny depictions of characters as varied as Shrek and Marilyn Monroe during Bavaria’s annual Carnival celebrations earned the German politician a reputation as a master of disguise. Portraying the real-life leader of Bavaria has been a tougher role. Barring a minor miracle, Söder’s Christian Social Union, which has dominated Bavarian politics for decades, will ... Read More »

Farewell to Fariborz: Australian burial for refugee who killed himself on Nauru

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Family and friends of Fariborz Karami, 26, gathered at Mount Gravatt cemetery in Brisbane to say goodbye Helen Davidson and Saba Vasefi The Guardian Last Friday relatives of Fariborz Karami finally said goodbye to the 26-year-old, an athletic and intelligent dentistry student who had married just a short time before taking his life inside a tent on Nauru. It had been more than three months since he died, and many years since doctors first raised concerns about his mental health ... Read More »

Migration: new map of Europe reveals real frontiers for refugees

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Since the EU declared a “refugee crisis” in 2015 that was followed by an unprecedented number of deaths in the Mediterranean, maps explaining the routes of migrants to and within Europe have been used widely in newspapers and social media. Martina Tazzioli The Conversation Some of these maps came out of refugee projects, while others are produced by global organisations, NGOs and agencies such as Frontex, the European Border and Coastguard Agency, and the International Organisation for… The Balkan route, ... Read More »

Regional visa approvals fall by 50% under the Coalition

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The number of people waiting for skilled regional visas has blown out by more than 50 per cent under the Coalition and the number of people being approved has halved, as the Morrison government faces calls to… By Eryk Bagshaw & David Crowe The Canberra Times Department of Home Affairs figures cast doubt on the government’s claims that Australia’s immigration distribution, which has clogged transport and roads in Sydney and Melbourne, is the fault of the… The figures show non-regional ... Read More »

Skilled migrants to spend ‘at least a few years’ in regional Australia under Morrison’s population plan

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New population minister Alan Tudge said up to 45 percent of permanent immigrants could be diverted to visas that force them to spend “at least a few years” in regional areas, or small states like… James Elton-Pym SBS The Morrison government has promised visa reforms that will force a significant chunk of Australia’s annual intake of 190,000 permanent migrants to spend “at least a few years” in regional… The move, advocated by the Nationals and key lobby groups like the Farmers’ ... Read More »

‘We need to make sure it’s realistic’: Liberty Victoria president weighs in on immigration plan

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Liberty Victoria president Jessie Taylor says the devil is in the detail for the Federal Government’s plan to ease mounting population pressure in Melbourne and Sydney. Neil Mitchel 3AW New visa conditions would require migrants to settle outside the major cities for up to five years. Ms Taylor, who also works as a lawyer, said it depended on whether there were job opportunities to sustain growth in regional centres. Neil Mitchell glad to see a population plan on the political ... Read More »

How African American folklore saved the cultural memory and history of slaves

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All over the world, community stories, customs and beliefs have been passed down from generation to generation. Jennifer Dos Reis Dos Santos The Conversation This folkore is used by elders to teach family and friends about their collective cultural past. And for African Americans, folklore has played a particularly important part in documenting history too. The year 1619 marked the beginning of African American history, with the arrival of the first slave ship in Jamestown, Virginia. Slavery put African Americans ... Read More »

The Karen road to Nhill

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Famous for 1997 movie The Road to Nhill, the town of that name is now home to 200 Karen refugees from Myanmar. Far from dividing locals, the huge influx of newcomers – many of whom arrived traumatised, unfamiliar with western society – has brought new life to the community. Is this a model for the rest of Australia? Words by Margaret Simons Pictures by Damien Pleming SBS It’s too quiet in Kay’s Kreations flower and gift shop. There aren’t any fresh ... Read More »

Nauru orders MSF to stop mental health work on island

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Nauru’s government has ordered Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) to stop work there immediately, despite a physical and mental health crisis in the country. Luke Henriques-Gomes The Guardian The medical NGO has been providing psychological and psychiatric services to residents, asylum seekers and refugees on the island since late 2017. MSF staff wrote to its clients on Saturday to tell them it could no longer offer them treatment because of an order from Nauru’s health minister, who said the its services were “no ... Read More »

Art show takes on the misrepresentation of Muslims

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Muslim women in the West have been battling inaccurate stereotypes for ages. In the post-Sept. 11 era, Muslim women have come to be seen as one-dimensional figures in need of saving by the “West” and lacking dynamism or the ability to act. Nadiya Ali The Conversation This month, a visual art exhibit opening in Toronto aims to challenge those representations. (Mus)interpreted is presented by the Truth and Dare Project and organized by artist Zahra Agjee and curated by Agjee and ... Read More »