Faith in action
Together, let us welcome those precious children, and their families, who are being held indefinitely on Nauru. Join the call to get #KidsOffNauru by Nov 20.Sign the petition
We believe these proposed changes are cruel, unnecessary and further entrench a policy of deterrence that is increasingly proving to be flawed and inhumane.
We therefore call on all our political leaders to first vote against these abhorrent proposed legislative changes for the following reasons:
Hence the proposed changes enshrine a lifetime punishment for genuinely desperate people who seek safety in Australia. Punishing the innocent (even as a means of deterrence) is inconsistent with Australian values.
2. Our current policy provides no safe pathway for a person who is in genuine need of safety and does not have access to applying for asylum through the UNHCR, and therefore arrives in Australia by boat.
We know that such people exist and seek asylum in Australia from our own records. Given our failure to offer this group a safe alternative pathway, these proposed amendments are grossly unfair and there is no purpose to be served in further entrenching our policy flaws with extreme legislative measures such as those proposed by the Government.
3. As Christians, we believe that every human is made in the image of God and therefore inherently valuable. We also know that Jesus instructed us clearly to welcome those who come to us seeking safety and show them hospitality.
These proposed legislative changes fail to recognise the inherent worth of each person, with each person’s dignity traded for a political purpose.
4. As Christians, we believe in “doing unto others as you would have them do unto you”.
We know that if we were in the same position, we would hope to be treated with respect, and offered a safe place to live whilst our individual applications for asylum assessed on their merits. We would not wish to be permanently punished simply because we were desperate and asked the wrong country for help.
In addition to opposing the proposed amendments and in direct contrast to their cruel spirit, we urge our political leaders to instead publicly affirm the wonderful contribution that people who have sought asylum in Australia (many of them arriving by boat) have made and continue to make to our nation. They are resourceful and tenacious individuals who embody the Aussie spirit and who deserve to be met with that national value we prize so much – a fair go.
Send an email to your MP asking them to vote against these proposed changes.
(1) Asylum seekers and refugees: what are the facts? Updated 2 March 2015, Janet Phillips, Social Policy Section
Jess Morthorpe invites us to pause, acknowledging that all creation is God’s, and calls the Church to rediscover a deep sense of connection to land.
Brooke Prentis is calling us to gather and pray breakthrough and justice for Aboriginal Deaths in Custody.
Byron Smith marvels at the wonder and fragility of our planetary blanket, but warns of our alarming disregard and damage we are causing, which is impacting all of creation.
Matt Anslow explores how our prayers should never absolve us of a compulsion to act.