ASF17 High Court ruling | ASRC Statement

Today’s High Court ruling is a devastating outcome for ASF17 and for those who remain locked up and facing indefinite detention.

ASF17 has been held in detention for over 10 years. He has been failed by the system, along with thousands of other refugees and people seeking asylum who have been through unjust and unfair processes like ‘fast track’ – a system which the Albanese Government has itself acknowledged as deeply flawed and committed to abolish.

The High Court decision today relied on our systems being fit-for-purpose. As a result of a decade of erosion by our political leaders, they are not. Instead we have a system that is stacked against people seeking asylum and the thousands of refugees who do not have their status recognised because of successive Government’s defective and harmful policies.

This week, Labor’s Entry Ban and Deportation Bill will be tabled in the Senate. If passed, it will have devastating consequences and force people to assist with their own deportation to countries where they fear genuine persecution and death, or face mandatory prison sentences here in Australia.

Labor’s Bill was clearly a rushed attempt to pre-empt political fallout from a positive decision for ASF17 today. In light of today’s judgement, it is inhumane and nonsensical for Labor’s Bill to proceed any further and for families, communities and entire nations to be unfairly punished due to political point-scoring.

Australians voted for change at the last election and an end to the cruel and inhumane treatment of refugees and people seeking asylum. Labor must immediately discard its Entry Ban and Deportation Bill to ensure people seeking asylum can live free from the threat of imprisonment or deportation to countries where they face serious harm and even death.




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