Tonight in the Senate the Greens and Labor disallowed the Temporary Protection Visa (TPV) introduced by the Coalition government.
The TPV was brought in to punish the people already here. The Government has introduced the ultimate deterrent by denying people physical access to Australia.
There was no need to introduce another deterrent.
The purpose of the TPV was punitive. It was designed to punish those who are here in the hope that some can be forced them to return to persecution because the Australian government is
stopping them from ever seeing their wives and children again.
This Minister has repeatedly said that Australia will have the harshest refugee policies and the TPV was another cruel tool in his arsenal.
The challenge now is to make sure that refugees are given their permanent visas and that the government does not with hold visas until mid year when they may have more control of the Senate. Already there are people who have been found to be refugees, who have had their health and security checks and who are still waiting up to three years for a visa.
But tonight we celebrate our friends happiness in holding the dreaded TPV at bay.
We thank all those who have written, rung, emailed and lobbied Labor to hold on to their principled position on long held policy against the TPV.
We thank Labor for remembering their roots.
We thank the Greens for holding firm and never wavering as always, for what is right.
Pamela Curr Refugee Rights Coordinator Asylum Seeker Resource Centre 12 Batman St West Melbourne 3003 ph 03 9326 6066 / MOB 0417517075 “AUSTRALIA. Built by boatpeople.”