We’re happy to announce that the Convergence Handbook is now available.
With any luck, it will answer all of your questions, but if it doesn’t and you’re in Perth, you can ask them at the Convergence Briefing — it’s on this Monday, the 15th of April, from 6pm at the Activist Centre, 15/5 Aberdeen St, Perth (walking distance from the McIver and Perth train stations). More details about this meeting is available at its Facebook events page.
To help people plan their convergence weekend, we’ve put together the following timetable. Please note that buses to Yongah Hill will be leaving from the southern end of the East Perth Terminal building (next to the foot bridge’s ramp on the western side of the East Perth train station, off Summers Street if you’re coming by car).
If you are driving to Yongah Hill in a private vehicle, parking will be at the corner of Gratte and Mitchel Ave, 1.6 km down the road from the detention centre, on the outskirts of Northam. There will be a shuttle running from there back up to the detention centre. Call the info line on the day for latest updates or advice on parking, Info line 0405 674 562 . There is no suitable parking at the detention centre.
|9:00 am||Conference/strategy meeting|
|10:00 am||Bus (10am, Perth to Northam)|
|10:30 am||Bus (10.30am, Perth to Northam)|
|12:00 pm||Gather at the Gates||Dance Journalism performance at the gates
|1:00 pm||Main Protest|
|3:00 pm||Introductions/discussions||Bus (3pm, Northam to Perth)
returning to East Perth
|4:00 pm||Workshops / Bus (4pm, Northam to Perth) returning to East Perth|
|6:30 pm||Candlelight Vigil||Documentaries|
We have seen politicians engage in a race to the bottom in refugee policy. With the re-introduction of offshore processing and the situation in Nauru and Manus Island becoming increasingly worse, now is the time to publicly condemn this abhorrent policy. To do this, the Refugee Rights Action Network (RRAN) will be returning to Northam’s detention centre to expose the cruelty and challenge the lies about our immigration detention system, and to show solidarity with the refugees and asylum seekers protesting in detention. If you are interested in joining the trip, you can register at http://refugee-rights.net/converge.
And even if you can’t make it out to Yongah Hill this ANZAC Day long weekend, you can still fight for the rights of refugees imprisoned in Australia’s immigration detention centres. Read on and support!
NOT IN OUR NAMES Project
If you can’t go to Yongah Hill, but want to contribute and state your opposition to this policy of violence against refugees and asylum seekers you can contribute to the NOT IN OUR NAMES banner. This banner will feature your name along with other contributors and will travel with RRAN activists to Northam and be displayed against the backdrop of the detention centre.
For the price of a ticket on the bus — your choice of $25 unwaged, $40 waged or $100 solidarity — you get your name on the banner and the knowledge that you have funded one more seat on that bus. You will also receive a photograph of the banner and RRAN in action.
And if you are so outraged that you need to support more…
For $200 you can SPONSOR AN ACTIVIST who will write a public account of their experiences and what they witnessed at Yongah Hill along with a private letter to you. These funds will go to the overall costs of RRAN’s operations, not to the activist themselves. But the funds will allow your particular RRANer to go where journalists don’t, to visit in detention and to organise further actions upon their return. And, you will also get your name on the NOT IN OUR NAMES banner and the photograph.
Donations can be made at http://refugee-rights.net/converge/register/ — just fill out the form there and put ‘Sponsor an Activist’ in the comments box. Thanks!
Refugee rights groups from around the country will be converging on Yongah Hill Detention Centre on the ANZAC day long weekend, 2013, to protest against the mandatory detention of asylum seekers.
We have seen politicians engage in a race to the bottom in refugee policy. With the re-introduction of offshore processing and the situation in Nauru becoming increasingly worse now is the time to express public outcry at this abhorrent policy.
Asylum seekers on Nauru have been on hunger strike for several days now, including an Iranian who has been on hunger strike for 32 days.
We have seen countless times over, that mandatory detention destroys people and we have seen time and time again that a policy of deterrance does not work.
Help us fight for a humane refugee policy and to show solidarity with asylum seekers protesting in detention.
Watch this space or the corresponding Facebook events page for updates and further details.
Seven people from several Australian cities were arrested by Northern Territory police for trying to make contact with refugees inside the Wickham Point Detention Centre outside Darwin.
They were out at the remote site to show support to the 500 people locked up there for legally seeking asylum in Australia. The protest occurred the day after a refugee inside Wickham Point tried to commit suicide.
“This protest was meant to be a message to the Australian public and politicians that people are prepared to come out in these 40 degree conditions, and are prepared to challenge the police that defend a detention centre that locks up innocent people,” Jay Fletcher, spokesperson for the Easter refugee convergence said.
“Wickham Point is Australia’s newest and biggest detention centre, the government has built it to lock up 1500 people. But this site is considered ‘unfit for human habitation’ and locking up people in the middle of nowhere so no one can see them and help them.
“This system kills people, it has been killing people for 20 years.”
Police and private security had blocked the entrance to the centre when about 35 refugee supporters arrived. Last Thursday, representatives from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship and private detention contractor Serco banned four refugee advocates from officially visiting the asylum seekers inside.
Mark Goudkamp, among the seven arrested, said: “The ‘approved site’ for our protest at Wickham Point was out of earshot and out of sight from the people we’d travelled across the country to support. Our simple attempt to reach an elevated point where we could interact with the asylum seekers, albeit still from a long distance, is clearly not what DIAC, Serco or the police want us to do.”
For more information, contact Jay Fletcher on 0438 819 131.
Over the Easter weekend, refugee rights activists from around Australia will converge on Darwin, Australia’s detention capital, to show solidarity with detained refugees, and demand and end to the inhumane indefinite detention policies.
It promises to be an enormous weekend of activity — we hope to see you at some of the following events:
Friday April 6:
Planning meeting for the weekend’s activities: 8am, Girl Guides Hall, Ross Smith Ave, Parap;
Rally to free the refugees! 12 noon,Parliament House- March through the CBD, then join us for a BBQ and speakers at Christ Church Cathedral. For info or transport (no public transport that day) call 0429 694 083
Saturday April 7:
Protest at NIDC, 10am. Park on the corner of Berrimah Road and Stuart Hwy (ie at Roadhouse or WoW electronics) and walk towards city. NIDC is not far along the highway, at the Berrimah Barracks on the left hand side of the hwy.
Kids out of detention! 1pm, Darwin Airport Lodge. Child and family-focused rally at the DAL, where families and unaccompanied minors are held. Bring balloons. toys, bells and whistles, clown outfits etc.
Rock against Racism, 5pm @ The Rock- Doctor’s Gully
Sunday April 8
Rally at Wickham Point 11am – meet in the carpark/ entrance. Please BYO weather protection, water, snacks. For transport, call Emma: 0488 208 235
Monday April 9
Defend the Homelands! No to Stronger Futures! (organised by Darwin Aboriginal Rights Coalition) 10am Civic Park (near Darwin City Council)
From April 6–9, refugee rights activists from around the country will be in Darwin to visit refugees detained here by the Australian government. It will mark 10 years since the refugee rights movement’s first Easter convergence at Woomera in 2002 and 20 years of mandatory detention policies.
- Hadi Hosseini, Afghan Hazara refugee
- Marcus Hampson, Refugee Rights Action Network WA
- June Mills, Larrakia activist and performer
Noon, Friday April 6, at Parliament House, Darwin
Rally will be followed by a march to DIAC and then a BBQ at Christ Church Cathedral. There will be no public transport that day, so please make other arrangements.