Tuesday, 13 November 2007

Another immigration bungle

This time, a man was wrongfully detained for five-and-a-half years (The Melbourne Age has a fuller version of the same story here). I saw the story of this on Lateline last night, and it was heartbreaking. The man, Tony Tran, was shunted around four different immigration centres over the period while his marriage broke up and his son was placed into foster care. The immigration department at one stage tried to get the son out of Australia and placed into the Korean welfare system. It was just bungle after bungle.

And Mr Tran still doesn't have permanent residency, so could be deported at any time.

I hear many stories that involve similar bungling and hard-heartedness on the part of Immigration and they make me very angry about our current policy and treatment of asylum seekers. To then see election slogans around like 'A strong economy is the centre of everything' makes me less likely rather than more to support a government that comes up with such a mantra while treating weak people in the way it does.

1 comment:

Anthony Caruana said...

I agree Gordon.

I believe that the primary role of government is to support and protect those least able to protect themselves. The current government fails us on this score through their treatment of asylum seekers and boasting of a huge budget surplus while families suffer under increasing interest rates, soaring fuel costs and ever-increasing costs for basic goods (like food) at the supermarket.

Our treatment of asylum seekers is a disgrace and ought to be a badge of national shame. Instead, the government points to it as if it's a good thing.