The Refugee Advice and Casework Service (RACS), a leading refugee legal centre, strongly condemns comments made by Minister Dutton today suggesting that advocates are “causing serious harm” to those in Nauru.

RACS are legal advocates for people on Nauru and people who have been on Nauru. We take our responsibilities as advocates seriously, including to act fairly, honestly and diligently and to communicate openly and clearly with our clients and with decision makers.

RACS has obtained and read the health records of such people. These health records state clearly that a lack of support, instability and the chaos of their situation are causing their mental deterioration.

As advocates, we deal with facts: health records, statements and independent reports. This morning a report released by UNHCR which states

“There is no doubt that the current policy of offshore processing and prolonged detention is immensely harmful”

is supportive of and consistent with our clients’ instructions and comments.

RACS’ work is premised on a commitment to fundamental human rights and human dignity. That commitment will see us continue our important legal work in sharing the voices of these vulnerable people.

 

For further comment, please contact:

Katie Wrigley – Principal Solicitor -­‐ 0408 479 153

Sarah Dale – Children, Youth & Policy Specialist Solicitor -­‐ 0413 812 267