Tuesday, 01 October 2013

There's never been a more important time to welcome the stranger

The President of the Uniting Church in Australia Rev. Professor Andrew Dutney has once again called attention to Australia's terrible treatment of asylum seekers. He has reiterated the Church's stance on the mandatory and indefinite detention of asylum seekers.

"The Uniting Church will continue to oppose the mandatory detention of asylum seekers and to advocate for the processing of asylum seekers in the community on visas with rights to work and access to health care and other vital support services," said Rev. Prof. Dutney.

"For many years, our Church has borne Christian witness against the harmful treatment of asylum seekers seeking shelter in Australia."

"We have spoken up for those denied dignity both in detention or in the community, where these vulnerable people are denied basic human needs such as the ability to work and to educate oneself."

"We are concerned about the policies of harm that have been instituted by the previous government and committed to by this one. They serve only as a reminder of the continued decline of Australia's commitment to human rights."

The Uniting Church is Australia's third largest church with a long history of advocating for human rights and social justice. For more information on the Uniting Church's policies on asylum seekers and refugees, see the UnitingJustice website at www.unitingjustice.org.au or sign up to UnitingCare NSW.ACT's Give Hope campaign at www.givehope.org.au.