keywords: Torture

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  • The challenge of education for social justice

    • Frank Brennan
    • 08 July 2015
    3 Comments

    I suspect Pope Francis had some of our Jesuit alumni in mind when he wrote in his encyclical Laudato Si: 'A politics concerned with immediate results, supported by consumerist sectors of the population, is driven to produce short-term growth... True statecraft is manifest when, in difficult times, we uphold high principles and think of the long-term common good. Political powers do not find it easy to assume this duty'.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The Border Force Act's disquieting parallels

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 06 July 2015
    32 Comments

    On July 1 the Australian Border Force Act 2015 became law. Detention centre staff are now forbidden to speak about human rights abuses, with a two year jail penalty applying. It is perhaps appropriate to recall the secrecy of the security apparatus of Stalinist Russia, Apartheid South Africa, and Chile and Argentina under the Generals, where victims were denigrated and information prevented from leaking out.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    An Orwellian reading of our anti-terror legislation

    • Justin Glyn
    • 22 June 2015
    13 Comments

    In George Orwell's most famous novel 1984, the white face of the Ministry of Truth bears the slogans: WAR IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY, IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH. Australia is not approaching dictatorship, but a quick look at Orwell's slogans in the light of the past week's news makes disturbing reading.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Italian perspective on Australia's asylum seeker shame

    • Anna Martin
    • 12 June 2015
    31 Comments

    Over the last few months, I have been completing a Masters in International Criminal Law at the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute in Turin, Italy. Over the last two weeks, our classes revolved around human rights — always a bit of a cringeworthy topic when one comes from Australia. Certainly Italy's attitude and approach to asylum seekers puts Australia's to shame.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Could Immigration 'secrecy' act trump mandatory reporting of abuse?

    • Justin Glyn
    • 09 June 2015
    6 Comments

    All Australian states and territories have mandatory reporting legislation requiring compulsory disclosure of suspected child abuse by relevant professionals. The Australian Border Force Act requires the permission of the Secretary before any disclosure of criminal conduct is made to the relevant authorities. Should an Immigration professional who works with children fulfil their mandatory reporting obligations if this permission is not granted (and face two years in prison) or not?

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Australia wants to know nothing about asylum seekers' torture history

    • Justin Glyn
    • 03 June 2015
    16 Comments

    International law regards torture as a matter of ius cogens, something which can never be justified. If one were serious about finding out about genuine refugee claims, enquiring about any torture at the hands of the people an asylum seeker is fleeing would surely be near the top of the list of cogent questions. But Australia has ceased to ask asylum seekers about any history of torture.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Painful memories of my schooldays

    • Isabella Fels
    • 27 May 2015
    9 Comments

    It was a place of torture, with great physical and mental pain. I remember being hit at with a hockey stick. I was forced to stoop, in all sorts of ways. All my efforts came to nothing, even when I gave the girls money to buy lollies, and lent them my Sweet Dreams teenage romance novels.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Europe rejects the 'Australian Solution'

    • Nikolas Feith Tan
    • 15 May 2015
    11 Comments

    Since the drowning of around 800 people on 19 April, politicians in the UK, France, Italy and Denmark have been suggesting that the European Union adopt our hardline asylum policy. Prime Minister Tony Abbott has advised the EU that 'only way you can stop the deaths is in fact to stop the boats'. But last week, the EU denied it was in talks with Australia, saying 'the Australian model can never be a model for us'.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The ignorant courage of the anti-vaxxers

    • Jen Vuk
    • 27 April 2015
    22 Comments

    When my friend Lena told me she wouldn’t be vaccinating her newborn son Sammy, I admit I was fascinated but not surprised. Lena was always going to do motherhood her way. There are many like her who decided with a clear vision and level-head. But I can no longer accept these decisions. Since having my own precious boys, my world view has shifted and I am less ignorant.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Excising the Rule of Law

    • Justin Glyn
    • 21 April 2015
    15 Comments

    When the term 'Rule of Law' was coined in the 19th century, it included a reasonable conduct stipulation to ensure fairness. A bill currently working its way through Federal Parliament would give those working in detention centres a low threshold in the use of force against detainees. The criterion of reasonableness of the officer’s conduct would be replaced by what an officer believes is reasonable.  

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Easter's April Fools

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 02 April 2015
    8 Comments

    Jokes are also part of the story of Jesus’ killing. They are not harmless, but are bitter mockery. After Jesus is sentenced he is mocked by the bored soldiers guarding him. As he hangs writhing on the cross, the bystanders and the local authorities also mock him because he claimed to be the Son of God. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Triumph over forced adoption practice

    • Kate Howarth
    • 30 March 2015
    12 Comments

    I was sent to St Margaret's Home for Unwed Girls, and when I didn’t buckle to pressure to surrender my son for adoption, I was tossed onto the street. I went from rock bottom to rise to the top of my field, only to have everything pulled from underneath me. I managed to get back up again and realise my childhood dream of one day becoming a writer, lending a voice to tens of thousands of young women who lost their children in what is now known as 'forced adoption'.   

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