The cruelty and indifference of Serco and Border Force continue to astound.
Mojgan Shamsalipoor was in year 12 at school in Brisbane and was taken into detention. Then she was put in detention at BITA, the detention centre in Brisbane. Then she gave an interview to the ABC, and she was moved to detention at Wickham Point in Darwin, despite the fact that her husband (Milad Jafari, a permanent resident) lives in Brisbane.
Her removal from detention in Brisbane was brutal. She was dragged out in the middle of the night by the hair. Five or six Serco guards were invovled in the exercise: to remove a young woman from detention in one place and move her to Darwin, 3000 kilometers from her husband and friends. In the detention trade, this is known as “an extraction”. Here is an account of Mojgan’s “extraction”
She was put in detention in Darwin. A lawyer in Darwin agreed to try and help her. Then the next bit of wilful bastardry happened.
Here is his request to visit Mojgan:
“…Please find attached a legal visit request for Mojgan Shamsalipoor on Wednesday 12 August at 2pm.
I confirm that I have been engaged to represent this client, and [name deleted] who will be accompanying me is an intern at our firm….”
Here is their response:
Can you please provide evidence you represent Mojgan Shamsalipoor?”
Mojgan’s solicitor replied:
“As you are aware, Ms Shamsalipoor has recently been transferred to WPIDC. We were instructed to represent her only yesterday, and will not be able to have an authority signed by her (e.g. by way of a form 956) until and unless we meet with her. If Serco or ABF is able to facilitate the signing of a form 956 prior to our visit, we would be happy to submit a form signed by us. Would this suffice?”
Serco, the company which runs detention centres, refused the solicitor’s request to visit:
“Unfortunately, your visit request has been refused due to not providing the 956 form signed by the detainee/ written authority of representation signed.”
Understand this: Serco told a solicitor he was not permitted to visit a young woman who has committed no offence but who is being held in detention a thousand kilometers away from home and husband.
And it raises the question: how is the solicitor to get a form signed by his client when he is not allowed to visit her?
No doubt Serco is just following instructions.
No doubt the instructions are given by the Border Force, whose uniforms (eerily reminiscent of SS uniforms) give some idea of their sense of arrogance and impunity.
I neither know nor care whether Mojgan has a good claim for protection as a refugee. She is a human being who has not committed any offence and who has bee treated with heartless contempt by Serco and border Force.
Every Australian should be ashamed of the way we treat innocent human beings.
And if you are interested in the way Serco sees itself, here is its website: http://www.serco-ap.com.au/ It boasts of its corporate responsibility. Perhaps it can take corporate responsibility for brutalising a frightened young woman. Or perhaps it was just “following orders”.
It boasts of its immigration services “Providing high quality services to people in our care”. I don’t think Mojgan would agree.
If you are appalled by Serco’s behaviour, let them know. Here are their contact details:
Serco Asia Pacific (Sydney)
Level 23, 60 Margaret Street, Sydney
New South Wales 2000
t. +61 (0)2 9964 9733
f. +61 (0)2 9964 9924