Submitted by Liberty Victoria on Wed, 07/25/2018 - 14:24
Over 150 free speech advocates are calling on Opposition Leader Bill Shorten to stop the offshore detention of asylum seekers. A letter has gone from those attending the nation’s top free speech awards, run by the rights body, Liberty Victoria.
The advocates want the ALP to change their policy to support the full resettlement in Australia of asylum seekers on Manus Island and Nauru.
The Bill amends the Migration Act 1958 (Cth) to empower the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection to ban mobile phones and other items in immigration detention centres. It also expands immigration officers’ warrantless search and seizure powers, and authorises them to use dogs to search detainees and visitors.
We support the Commonwealth Government’s commitment to ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (OPCAT).
The Victorian Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006 (Vic) (the Charter) imposes human rights obligations on every public authority in Victoria. Relevantly for present purposes, s 10 of the Charter provides that:
A person must not be—
(a) subjected to torture; or
(b) treated or punished in a cruel, inhuman or degrading way; or