Joint statement by religious leaders regarding Kangaroo Point asylum seekers
We continue to be deeply disturbed at the way in which asylum seekers are being treated by the Australian Government. The situation in the Kangaroo Point Alternative Place of Detention, (APOD), in the inner city is yet another example of the complete disregard for the God-given human dignity of these individuals. We are advised that 80% of the men have been determined to have refugee status.
We understand that their access to friends and other supporters is being unduly constrained, along with their access to basic needs such as fresh air, sunshine, and the outdoors.
These people have done no wrong; they have committed no crime. They should be treated humanely upholding their intrinsic dignity and treated with fairness, while options for their future are being negotiated.
We ask that these men be housed in Community Detention where their mental health could improve with the support of family, friends, the wider community and church members. This is reasonable and doable.
We call on the Australian Government to ensure that its contractors give due regard to the human rights and basic needs of the men at Kangaroo Point. We encourage the members of our respective denominations and faiths to voice their concerns to their Federal Member of Parliament.
We are asking our communities to offer prayer for these men this coming weekend.
“Loving God, merciful and gracious, abounding in love and justice, we thank you for the life we enjoy here in Australia, for our freedoms and prosperity, even in the midst of this COVID-19 pandemic.
We pray for those seeking asylum in our land, for their supporters, and for the Australian Government, that asylum seekers’ dignity as fellow human beings may be respected, and that a resolution to their long-term future may be found.
We pray that those seeking asylum and their families may be given all the resources Australia has to offer to live a life of human dignity while the processes around their future are followed through.”
Rev David Baker
Uniting Church in Australia, Queensland Synod
Islamic Council of Queensland
Dr Joe Goodall
Queensland Congregational Fellowship
Archbishop Phillip Aspinall
Archbishop of Brisbane
0437 368 firstname.lastname@example.org