Detention Rights Advocacy
The ASRC’s Detention Advocacy Manager, Sadaf leads a team of caseworkers (2 full-time equivalent) who currently support more than 400 clients in detention across Australia and s in Nauru and Papua New Guinea.
DRAP’s casework services encompass providing emotional support to clients as well as information about the complexities of Australia’s policies, resettlement options to third countries, referrals to medical and legal services and other services who can provide advice and support and risk notification to the authorities to provide adequate care.
The DRAP team also work closely with community advocates and sector partners to campaign for the end of arbitrary detention and call for the closure of offshore and onshore detention. Working in partnership with the sector our DRAP team continues to have an important role in calling for the immediate release and resettlement of everyone in detention, so people can live in a safe environment and in a way that respects their human rights.
In 2018-19 our detention program successfully aligned with sector partners to campaign and coordinate the safe removal of 109 children in detention on Nauru and helped establish the Medevac legislation which provided a clear pathway for people in offshore detention to receive urgent medical treatment in Australia. Of the 273 people approved under Medevac for urgent medical care in Australia, our DRAP team helped facilitate the transfer of approximately 200 people to Australia before the law was repealed in December 2019. Last year our advocacy work included visits to those people who were transferred under Medevac and held in Melbourne immigration detention, highlighting the additional risks posed by COVID-19 to all clients in detention. The DRAP team continues to advocate on behalf of those held in detention and is currently working in partnership with the sector to secure the immediate release and resettlement of everyone in onshore detention.