30 May, 2012

A vigil for Ranjini

Today marks two weeks since a young mother and her sons were taken from their home and placed in detention - indefinitely.

Ranjini was verified as a genuine refugee and set about starting a new life with her new husband in Melbourne. She and her husband recently discovered they're expecting their first child together. But 2 weeks ago ASIO revised her security finding and now she and her young sons join around 50 other refugees (including 6 children) held without knowing the reasons for their detention, without independent review and without an opportunity for appeal.

30,000 Australians signed the petition to our Attorney-General and Immigration Minister because we believe in principles of justice and that no one should be treated this way in our country. Next week, we'll deliver the petition to Attorney-General Nicola Roxon's office in Maribyrnong at dusk by the light of hundreds of candles - a vigil for Ranjini and her family and all others locked up indefinitely without appeal.

Will you join us?


What: Candlelight vigil for refugees with no right of appeal
When: 5.00pm, Thursday 31 May
Where: Outside Nicola Roxon's office, 337 Gordon Street Maribrynong (see map here)
RSVP: http://www.getup.org.au/vigilforjustice

If you haven't been to an event like this before, here's what it'll be like.

As the sun sets, we'll stand together holding lit candles and sharing a moment of silence for the refugees who are being held indefinitely without appeal or trial. There's something incredibly powerful about being surrounded by like-minded neighbours and familiar local faces, and knowing that for all our differences, we have this in common - the belief that indefinite detention without appeal is not justice.

Five years ago, when David Hicks was held overseas - indefinitely, without charge, trial or appeal - we came together as a community and held candelight vigils outside the offices of the Foreign Minister to stand up for justice. Now, when justice is absent here in Australia, let's do the same.

Click here to RSVP.

All are welcome - young and old, in company or alone. We'll provide the candles - all you need to bring is yourself (and perhaps a warm coat!). For every hand that can hold a candle, the message to the Attorney-General and Federal Government will be brighter, stronger and more meaningful.

Hope to see you there,
Justine, for the GetUp team.

PS - This year a Parliamentary Committee made 31 recommendations to reform immigration detention - one of them being that ASIO decisions should be subject to appeal and review. The Government has been slow to act on this but this week the Greens announced they will be introducing legislation and prominent human rights lawyer David Manne is challenging indefinite detention in the High Court. It's time for the Attorney-General and Federal Government to right the wrong. Come and show your support.

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