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How can we get a fair go for our student asylum seekers?

By 31 May 2014 7

open-letter

Dickson College students have published an open letter about one of their fellow students. The letter says that every week, when he applies to the Department of Immigration for a weekly visa extension, he has to explain that if he goes “back home” to where he was born he may be murdered by someone whose crime will go unpunished. His small amount of Red Cross funding has been cut off, and now that he has turned 18 he is no longer supported by the Australian Government. He is not eligible to receive the university education that many of his fellow students look forward to.

The biggest weekly decision for the average college student is whether or not to go to a party on the weekend, but for some of the teens in the college bridging program it is how to feed themselves, and how to stay out of a detention centre for another week.

Fellow Rioters, please read the Dickson College students’ letter and then post your suggestions on how we can persuade the Australian Government to give these kids a fair go.

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7 Responses to How can we get a fair go for our student asylum seekers?
#1
FourFour4:46 pm, 02 Jun 14

Congratulations to the students from Dickson College on putting some serious thoughts together and formulating this letter (I am glad I took the time to read it)

Whilst I might not agree with absolutely 100% of their thoughts – I applaud the student’s intent and it has certainly made me think about this particular scenario.

Given this is an open forum – is there anyone out there with knowledge of these scenarios when people in this situation transition from <18 to 18???

#2
m_ratt5:45 pm, 02 Jun 14

I’d be interested in more detail about what sort of visa he has that has to apply weekly for extension. It would surprise me that Immigration could process such extension requests within a week, let alone every week.

“? If it meant you could survive, wouldn’t you take a boat out? And where would you run? An overpopulated and poor country where you have no hope of living outside of a camp? Or a land of opportunity? A land people say will give you a fair go? Where you may be able to live like a real human being?” [why the f is there a tabspace between every word in that letter]?

Question for those who (possibly correctly) insist there is no ‘queue’ as far as asylum seekers go, in the context of the above quote:

Why should an asylum seeker who has significant/enough resources available to them to take a boat journey to attempt to reach Australia, have greater access to Australia’s protection, than those who do not and are stuck in ‘an overpopulated and poor country where you have no hope of living outside of a camp’?

Have you ever considered that those people who consider boat arrivals to be ‘queue jumpers’, simply believe that greater (Australian) resources should be put into protecting those people who do not have the resources themselves to reach our country, or another place where they too could reach their potential much like the ‘boy’ referred to in the letter?

#3
bigfeet7:03 pm, 02 Jun 14

Ah, the joy of youth. Naivety, idealism, righteous indignation and an unshakeable belief that you know everything. Maintain it as long as you can.

Its a pity things in the real world aren’t always black and white. It would be nice if they were. But they aren’t.

#4
Masquara7:20 pm, 02 Jun 14

The school should focus on teaching those students better writing skills.

#5
dungfungus8:02 pm, 02 Jun 14

“….murdered by someone whose crime will go unpunished……”
He is already in the right city that has plenty of those situations.

#6
Walker1:44 am, 03 Jun 14

bigfeet said :

Ah, the joy of youth. Naivety, idealism, righteous indignation and an unshakeable belief that you know everything. Maintain it as long as you can.

Its a pity things in the real world aren’t always black and white. It would be nice if they were. But they aren’t.

“When you’re 16 you think you can take on the world. And sometimes, you’re right!” – Bono.

Not that youth is always right (besides someone who followed through on that right there, and then some…!).

But without some high hopes, some youthful insight, we’d be stuck in some pretty ordinary blinkered sterile views. Possibly even deadly ones. At any rate I don’t see how age comes into this so directly.

This letter is so honest and to the point, maybe not the most brilliant piece of work you’ll ever see, but then again at least it is not high class deception!

If this young student wants to be the next Jacki Chan (the name Australians gave!), or the next mechanic, either will do… I don’t know, I mean, do you want to give Jacki a phone call? Sir, your youthful exhuberance and family input into our great city was really just a case of naive youthful exhuberance…

(I don’t think that’s what you’re saying as such, in your post, don’t get me wrong, just making the broader audience point now).

Maybe things aren’t always black and white, I’ll give a grain of something to it. But that’s as far as that goes and although I’ll grant it somewhat, I’ll also grant that it doesn’t wash the whole world into grey.

Especially not right here I mean this is Canberra, this is our guest for now, all other things being equal and fair then I think we should express some interest in this person who’s had the guts to write this letter.

#7
sepi11:12 am, 03 Jun 14

I have heard elsewhere that there are problems for refugee students who turn 18 in the school year. I heard that many had to drop out of school, missing their HSC exams after studying most of the year for them. (I thought their school spot was no longer funded – perhaps they just have no money to live). Seems like this is an issue someone needs to look at.

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