Weekly media wrap - 24 December 2018

An appeal to stop the deportation of a family of Tamil asylum seekers was dismissed by the Federal Court. The family, including two Australian-born children, lived for many years in the small Queensland town of Biloela prior to their detention in March 2018. They have been campaigning against their deportation for much of this year through various court proceedings, receiving significant community support including a petition with over 140,000 signatures calling on Peter Dutton to intervene. In dismissing the appeal, the judge ordered that the family not be deported until February 2019.

A former worker in the Manus Island detention centre filed a case in Victoria’s Supreme Court suing the security company G4S and the Australian Government for unsafe and harmful working conditions at the centre. The former worker stated that the job description and working conditions presented to him upon applying for the job were misleading. He said that he actually experienced inadequate security to protect staff from violence, no training for emergency procedures or security briefings, inadequate facilitates to treat detainees, and insufficient water, hygiene and power.

An Afghan Hazara refugee who was transferred from Nauru to Australia for medical treatment over six weeks ago has not yet seen a doctor in Australia. Specialist medical reports state that without immediate treatment, the woman, Narges, is at risk of permanent hearing loss and developing fatal infections. Narges was recently taken to a medical appointment from the Villawood detention centre, but the appointment was cancelled.

The Australian Labor Party quashed a push to overhaul their current asylum seeker policy platform at their national conference. There had been proposals by some within the party to end offshore detention, cease boat turnbacks, and improve regional processing. The party will, however, likely increase their refugee intake commitment by up to 4000.