Letters For Ranjini congratulates the Commonwealth and Immigration Ombudsman on the recommendations it made last week concerning adverse security assessments.
Their report, available here, “notes with growing concern the increasing number of people held in immigration for two years or more who have been found to be owed protection but have received an adverse security assessment from ASIO”. They have recommended that the Government “give the utmost priority to finding a solution that reconciles the management of any security threat with its duty of care to immigration detainees”.
The report echoes the message that we have campaigning under for the past 3 months and we support them in urging the Government to finding a solution that better manages national security with basic human rights.
We are particularly concerned with details in the report that go to the mental state of people being held in these conditions. In particular, one man who has been detained since 2009 who “feels that staying in detention in killing him. He advised that he could have died in one day in Country A but here in detention death is gradual”.
We would also request some clarity from Minister Bowen regarding his statement to parliament in response to this report. We speak specifically to the Minister’s response to the report on the man mentioned above, in which he states.
“This person’s current place of detention is his preference.”
We would be very interested to hear from the Minister the options from which he selected this preference? It seems unusual that a man would choose a place where “death is gradual”, unless of course the other option was a less gradual death?