Oct 18, 2010

Albanese welcomes decision on families in detention

Albanese welcomes decision on families in detention

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

Minister for Infrastructure & Transport

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

October 18 2010

Federal Member for Grayndler Anthony Albanese today welcomed the Australian Government’s decision to expand its existing residence determination program which will begin moving significant numbers of children and vulnerable family groups out of immigration detention facilities and into community-based accommodation.

“The Gillard Labor Government is committed to the humane treatment of those fleeing persecution and seeking asylum in our country,” said Mr Albanese.

“This is especially important for children, for whom protracted detention can have negative impacts on their development and mental health.”

The Government will partner with community organisations to transfer unaccompanied minors and families, who are awaiting the outcome of their applications for asylum, into community-based accommodation.

To implement this expanded program, the Immigration Minister will use existing powers under the Migration Act to make “residence determinations” and place unaccompanied minors and vulnerable families in community-based accommodation.

The Minister will also use his powers under the Act to place conditions – such as curfews, requirements to live at a certain address and obligations to check in regularly with authorities – on those permitted to live in the community while awaiting the outcome of their applications for asylum.

Mr Albanese said, in the past two years, Labor has also abolished Temporary Protection visas and detention debts as part of its more humane approach to asylum seekers within Australia.