Deported to Danger

Executive Summary of Findings

1. 35 out of the 40 people interviewed were living in dangerous circumstances immediately on arrival at the point of deportation and
only five are clearly safe in the longer term. Some are back in their country of origin or in another country to which they fled or were sent. All had tried to convince Australian authorities that they would not be safe if rejected.

Two escaped from dangerous situations on arrival to find permanent sanctuary in other First World countries, while another two escaped threatened deportation to danger and applied for asylum in a First World country.

2. It is clear that the danger was exacerbated by documents issued under Australian authority. Some of this paperwork was
confiscated on arrival or had a short expiry date. Some was declared to be false and of no use. Many of those who relied on the paperwork provided by the Australian Government or its agents were left without identification. Instances where Australia actually
provided money for payment to officials in other countries belies the
Government’s claim that the destinations were safe and invites the
accusation of corruption.

3. The stories show that people applying for Australian protection frequently face disrespect for their dignity, for ordinary standards of civilised behaviour and disregard for human rights obligations
imposed on Australia as a signatory to various International Treaties and Declarations. These reports are not only inconsistent with the values we claim to espouse as a nation; they call for examination of Australian compliance with our obligations under international
laws and conventions.

Conclusion

Edmund Rice Centre concluded that Australia
has not adequately respected and safeguarded some fundamental human rights of the people we interviewed. It appears that the Government’s present policy regarding refugees and asylum seekers is dictated not by the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Refugee Convention but by other political agenda. There is no doubt that our current refugee protection
system is in urgent need of reform. The Senate Committee made this adequately clear four years ago. Urgent action and truth are now required.

See full report here: Deported to Danger