#1035 for broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 15 Feb 2015
The Human Rights Commission this week released a report children held in immigration detention. The report found that:
- 34% of children in detention centres were suffering from a mental disorder
- 67% of parents and children described themselves as often unhappy, depressed or tearful
- there were numerous reported incidents of assaults, sexual assaults and self-harm involving children
As my colleague, the Reverend Scott Higgins, says:
One of the fundamental axioms of the treatment of children is that the state and parents should always act in the best interests of the child. During the inquiry the government admitted that it no longer considered the best interest of the child when considering placing them in detention on Nauru. Rather priority was given to … deterring people from making boat trips to Australia.
This is outrageous. It must stop. Our political leaders need to hear that Australians do not want children held in detention, where they are likely to be abused.
I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.