Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche


‘Ending the Nation’s shame …’

The Independent Member for Denison, Andrew Wilkie, will introduce a Private Member’s Bill this morning that would provide for a fairer, more sustainable and more humane approach to asylum seekers and refugees.

Download a copy of the bill, explanatory memorandum, and fact sheet below …

Mr Wilkie will introduce the bill at approximately 10:15am this morning in the House of Representatives and then be available afterwards for comment with the Independent Member for Indi, Cathy McGowan, who is seconding the bill.

WHEN: 10:45am TODAY 18 June
WHERE: : Senate Courtyard, Parliament House CANBERRA

“The Liberal and Labor parties are in a race to the bottom when it comes to asylum seekers,” Mr Wilkie said. “What we need is an approach that’s humane and developed in conjunction with other countries in the Asia Pacific region.

“That’s why I’m introducing legislation today that would establish a better way forward. This bill should be seen by the Government and the Opposition as an alternative to the current cruelty that’s taking place in offshore detention centres.

“This bill enables the establishment of a network of centres, located in and run by Asia Pacific countries including Australia, where asylum seekers can go to be registered, have their immediate humanitarian needs met and lodge a preference for country of re-settlement. If the asylum seeker selects Australia, and is within the specified quota, this bill establishes a process for assessing their claim in Australia with appropriate oversight, limited timeframes and judicial review. The bill does not allow mandatory detention and prioritises the applicant’s immediate needs and refugee and international human rights law.
“This bill has been developed in accordance with UNHCR guidelines and crucially is consistent with international human rights law, something the Government and Opposition have been wilfully ignoring.

“I have also consulted extensively with the refugee sector to develop a proposal that is not only fair and humane but also workable.

“I ask the Coalition and Labor to take a look at this alternative proposal so that we can open a discussion about a better way forward, rather than the current miserable and cruel bipartisan policy.”

Authorised by Andrew Wilkie MP 188 Collins St Hobart

Download a copy of the bill, explanatory memorandum, and fact sheet …




Author Credits: [show_post_categories parent="no" parentcategory="writers" show = "category" hyperlink="yes"]


  1. Wining Pom

    June 21, 2018 at 2:56 pm

    Isn’t it just the worst thing when you live happily in a country and foreigners come in and take over.

    And isn’t it just the funniest thing when foreigners who have taken over a country complain about foreigners coming in and taking over ‘their’ country.

  2. Robin Charles Halton

    June 20, 2018 at 8:49 pm

    Well Andrew this is their last chance as China moves closer to our front door ( Cape York) the remaining refugees on manus will be largely forgotten about by the Australian public.

    I think that by the next Federal election, what by March next year approx., the Australian public public will be asking more and more questions about China’s moves into our region.

    The Greens will be delighted to ask questions about China’s move into the Tasmanian property market.

    Cassie O’Connor has already questioned the Cambria aquisition at Swansea, 3,300 ha for a “Chinese retirement village”

    I did hear that Moonlake and those Chinese investors as the purchasers involved with the VDL Coy dairy farm at Circular Head recently purchased the Oakhampton property at Triabunna as well.

    Anyway it seems to be all happening before our eyes and ears, there will be one unholy row in our own Parliament before long as Hodgman loses the plot completely over foreign ownership issues infiltrate our own state.

  3. Robin Charles Halton

    June 19, 2018 at 12:14 pm

    I am suggesting that this will be the final opportunity for Andrew Wilkie to be heard in Federal Parliament in support of refugees!

    Australia at present is in the initial stages of going through a rather distasteful discourse on the Chinese invasion of Australian business, enterprise and property investment ownership into the entire nation as well as our surrounding Asia Pacific neighbours, for example, PNG, Vanuatu and Fiji.

    As #12 Annie points out, the PM’s offer to provide NBN to the Solomons is an excellent example of regional cooperation. Hopefully it will work to avoid Chinese government backed HUWEI from tapping into the region spreading their influence far and wide!

    I am suggesting that Australia may have left its run too late. Fiji hates our guts with the Chinese already making a huge investment base in Suva despite some internal opposition of their own.

    Vanuatu seems to have told us to rack off.

    This leaves PNG next door to Northern Australia who are very close to seducement by Chinese business for providing new local infrastructure for “free” in return for business cooperation.

    Australia’s diplomacy is on the back foot and this could be partly due to the Manus Island stand off where the PNG government are sick and tired of Australia’s pandering over the remaining refugees left stranded in the region.

    I would suggest that Mr Wilkie, as an ex Army officer, could make the PM more aware of the seriousness of the nature of offshore detention that could easily lead to further tensions with the PNG government at the same time threatening our relationship worse still our national security as China is being allowed to close in on the entire region.

    I cant understand why Australians are not up in arms on what is happening around us. People must think we are living in a bubble and it may be already too late to change our ways to counteract the impending loss of sovereignty.

    We can just hope that Me Wilkie’s bill will impact on the government as the first step to reassign PNG as reliable neighbour!

  4. Annie

    June 18, 2018 at 3:23 pm

    Yes thankyou Andrew, for focusing on the protection of refugees. I think it would be good if we actually ratified the United Nations Charter on the Rights of the Child.

    Good to have a planned yet flexible humanitarian program continue. This is a current strength and thus a good idea to continue with, irrespective of party politics and independent of discussions about annual skilled immigration.

    to avoid xenophobia, we are all in the same boat regarding the need to enforce the small arms treaty to which Australia is a signatory. Do we really want to be amongst the top 10 arms exporters?

    Australia is multicultural and new residents need support to acquire English as a second or a third language, as well as ongoing settlement support. Most people want to contribute to our community.

    It would be good if the government continues with the special support payment whilst people’s claims for permanent residency are assessed.

    Also, far better if we have an economy that is geared to life and shared interests. The recent innovation to help deliver technology for the NBN to the Solomon Islands is an excellent example of regional co-operation.

    Also if Australia signed the new Nuclear Disarmament Treaty and disengaged from the nuclear fuel cycle altogether it would provide more influence.

  5. Robin Charles Halton

    June 18, 2018 at 1:58 pm

    Despite Andrew’s plea to parliament and the focus on refugees, an annual intake of what is it now around 12-14,000 souls pa , won’t change.

    That is despite globally, more refugees are being either displaced, or exist in limbo somewhere on the planet mainly due to over populations living under regimes of political instability.

    Australia has suddenly become focused on a Chinese invasion into our private space as governments have kowtowed in particular to the Chinese for too long, and it’s turning up a nasty distaste of where to now.

    PM Turnbull and his supporters need to take forward steps to protect Australia from invasion of awkward populations either being allowed or coming by boat to settle in Australia without proper assessment of racial and cultural suitability to deserve settlement or resettlement here.

    I’ll bet any money the next federal election will be fought out over national security issues. There is no question about that.

    Yes, I do agree that the current Manus Island situation cannot be sustained. PNG is jack of it, we Aussies are jack of it. For those that qualify, allow them to come to Australia; those that don’t simply deport them.

    #2 … Max, let’s agree this will be the last of offshore processing. Australia needs to focus on stopping a Chinese invasion before it is to late.

    There needs to be a turning point soon. Turnbull and Shorten both need to make firm commitments now to protect us from the Asian peril not far to our north.

  6. Russell

    June 18, 2018 at 1:42 pm

    Re #2 … You actually provided the answer, max. Stop invading, occupying, demolishing and supporting the criminal governments of these people’s countries.

  7. Wining Pom

    June 18, 2018 at 1:42 pm

    I think any amount of refugees is better than any rise in sea level.

    Torture refugees, but keep digging coal.

  8. TGC

    June 18, 2018 at 12:32 pm

    #7 … But why is that your number? If we take these matters seriously (#7 doesn’t) there should not be a (limiting) number.

    And you are wrong in another way, too. I would drop all (controlled) immigration in favour of preferences for asylum seekers. Allowing the unneedy to come here, at the expense of allowing more deserving in, is wrong.

  9. Donzel Harbashi

    June 18, 2018 at 1:41 am

    #5 … I’ll play a silly game … how about 2,345,678 … because it is one more than 2,345,677 and 2,345,678 more than you would accept.

  10. john. hayward

    June 18, 2018 at 1:10 am

    This bill would be an affront to oppression-loving conservatives everywhere. Where else would they find their pleasures if not in putting their boots to the necks of the relatively powerless such as dusky skinned refugees, or at least thwarting the perverted desires of ABC-loving humanists?

    Despite their historical propensities for genocide and kleptocracy, conservatives are people too, and deserving of all the protections that democratic governments accord to citizens generally. According to their own credo, they expect more than equality, and are keen to exploit any advantages on offer.

    John Hayward

  11. TGC

    June 18, 2018 at 12:11 am

    A key question: what should be the number of asylum seekers Australia should accept annually? Why that number?

  12. stephen menadue

    June 17, 2018 at 11:18 pm

    Well done, Andrew. Go hard.

  13. Alison Bleaney

    June 17, 2018 at 8:20 pm

    It’s way past being needed. The present process is dehumanising and abhorrent.

    Thank you for yet again trying to effect change.

  14. max

    June 17, 2018 at 7:39 pm

    Stop the boats … we haven’t stopped the boats, we only diverted them and the drownings have gone on unabated.

    As members of the willing we have bombed the crap out of countries, created the situation where they can no longer live in their own country, and when in desperation they get on a leaking boat, something that no one would do with their family if they had a choice, we then we prosecute them as criminals.

    If we are going to invade other countries we should accept responsibilities for our actions. We should also realise that these people, refugees or migrants are going to hate our guts.

    Australia is overpopulated now. I don’t have any answers to the conundrum we are in .. but we can stop creating and start stopping the present situation.

  15. Ted Mead

    June 17, 2018 at 3:02 pm

    Fantastic Andrew – Thank god someone in this country is taking a different approach to the refugee debacle in Australia.

    I haven’t read the bill in full, although I’m sure plenty of thought and work has gone into it.

    The APASS is a far more pragmatic and humane process for asylum seekers which, if passed, would alienate the impetus of our conservatives who wish to divide, polarise and manipulate this controversial issue for their own political gains!

    Given the above sentence, it will be a major challenge to get this bill up, particularly with the extreme right who always see asylum seekers as a means to hoodwink the public.

    Abolishing mandatory detention is an imperative, and a vast step forward!

    Good luck with your endeavours!

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