“Seeking asylum is not a crime” – RISE Awareness campaign
Who we are
RISE: Refugees, Survivors and Ex-Detainees is a not-for-profit incorporated association. RISE is the first refugee and asylum seeker welfare and advocacy organisation in Australia to be governed by refugees, asylum seekers, and ex-detainees. RISE exists to enable refugees and asylum seekers to build new lives by providing advice, engaging in community development, enhancing opportunity, and campaigning for refugee rights. RISE advocates on its members behalf to improve refugee policies and to generate positive social change in respect to attitudes impacting refugees.
– Federal election 2013
During this period of campaigning by politicians before the election on 7 September 2013, RISE is launching an awareness campaign urging the Australian public not to be misled by the deceitful and politically opportunistic misinformation regarding Australia’s refugee intake, fuelled by parties on all sides of politics.
For decades, Australian politicians have been stoking fear by misleading the public for political gain, by painting asylum seekers arriving on boats as ‘queue jumpers’ – unscrupulous illegal entrants without morals, capable of throwing even their children into the sea. The targeting of refugee boats reached a new low when a deliberate misinformation campaign about ‘The Children Overboard affair’ during the time of ex-prime minister, John Howard that successfully won him the 2001 election. This exploitative use of refugee boats as a key wedge strategy to win votes during the Howard era was crafted by campaign advisor Lynton Crosby. Now, both sides of government are continuing to legitimise this strategy and the last four elections have been won as a result of the exploitation of anti-asylum seeker hysteria stirred by politicians themselves.
Stop the boat policies have always been around including the time of Malcom Fraser. It has re-morphed into “break
the people smuggling model”. Rather than implementing measures to assist asylum seekers achieve safe passage to Australia, the major parties have instead taken hard-line approaches. This has geared towards creating more obstacles for asylum seekers to settle in Australia, particular those who embark on their journey to Australia by boat. Rather than demonstrating genuine efforts to ensure the safe passage of asylum seekers, the latest shifts in government policies are prompted more by border security concerns rather than concerns for refugees. In this year’s lead-up to the federal election, both political parties continue to exploit populist and misinformed hysteria surrounding asylum seekers as a disingenuous means of getting ahead in the polls.
But what is the truth behind Australia’s refugee policies?
FACTS (click below)
- Australia receives only 0.3% of the global intake of asylum seekers
- The high cost of funding the border security industry
- The human cruelty of the ‘no advantage’ policy
- A catastrophic humanitarian and human rights crisis
- Keep yourself informed
Say no to the use of refugees as political currency in election time
RISE represents over 30 refugee and ex-detainee communities in Australia. We urge the Australian public to Stop the Rot to say NO to utilising refugees and asylum seekers as political currency in the upcoming Federal election.
RISE Team 2013