Social Justice

Painting the Campus Refugee

1 March 2018

In the past week, the Parkville campus has been plastered with dozens of stickers, posters and leaflets expressing compassion and support for refugees languishing in offshore camps on Manus Island and Nauru. The poster campaign seeks to bring back the focus on the suffering and mistreatment of refugees ahead of the Palm Sunday rally for refugees. Held annually by the Refugee Advocacy Network, the rally aims to send a message of solidarity with refugees and encourage political change. Currently, there are over 1500 refugees languishing on Manus Island and Nauru, whose future remains uncertain.

The island camps have been condemned by human rights groups for their lack of hygiene, substandard medical care, and high rates of mental illness, self-harm and suicide. Concerns have also been raised surrounding allegations of physical and sexual assault towards refugees from camp guards, the Papua New Guinea police and local residents. Despite these complaints, both major parties refuse to commit to onshore processing and resettlement policies. Protesters at the upcoming march will seek to change this, calling upon politicians of all parties to ‘bring them here’.

The rally will be held at 2pm, 25 March at the State Library.


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