November 11, 2015
No welcome mat for detainees
A justice reform advocate says the Government needs to be doing a lot more to prepare for an influx of former prisoners being deported from Australia.
Hundreds of New Zealanders whose visas have been cancelled are awaiting deportation, even if their jobs, homes and families are in Australia.
Kim Workman, who’s a former director of Prison Fellowship, says when people are released from prison here there is usually a process to link them back into the community and find them work and housing.
He says if detainees are just dumped here, it’s almost inevitable they will reoffend.
"They don’t have any social support to speak of, they’ll have difficulty finding work and so on, and then they would have had this horrendous experience in a detention system which is very much third world and is rampant with violence and mayhem," Mr Workman says.
Seven detainees, four of them believed to be New Zealanders, have been taken from the Christmas Island detention centres to Perth after a riot that caused extensive damage to the facility.
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