Immigration operations rage over Australia
Immigration Compliance operations are raging all over Australia.
Immigration police are searching through the Northern Territory vineyards, Fruit and vegetable farms in outback NSW, Building sites, factories and restaurants in the city - there is no part of Australia too isolated for the immigration officials to visit. It seems that they have an unlimited budget for this important work seizing and arresting workers who have overstayed their visas or even worse those who are working whilst on bridging visas instead of accepting handouts to stay alive. DIMIA is getting information from other government departments such as schools and sources yet unknown.
Targetting Rural workers A Catholic priest reported from a NSW country town that two weeks ago, Immigration officials came into town and proceeded to drink with the locals at the pub, pumping them for information on big farms and asking who has hired workers to bring in the harvest. They are noted for paying for information.
The next morning the local police were posted onto the back roads where workers are travelling to the farms and they are then stopped, searched and passports demanded. This priest reported a Bangladeshi man having a gun held to his head whilst he knelt on the ground during a search. A young woman from South America was recently picked up, held in a police cell and refused leave to go home to breast feed her baby. This woman had paid a migration agent to lodge her case and believed her visa was in order. The Migration agent had vanished when she needed the matter verified and it has now been found that her case was never lodged. This woman is married with a baby.
Meanwhile in Melbourne pressure is being put on Sri Lankans. Many have been issued with 28 day letters telling them that they have 28 days to buy tickets for their return. They are then called up to visit the Compliance section of DIMIA and threatened that if they do not sign to go that they and their families will be taken into detention. Some have been so terrified that they have signed and returned home. The problem is that the political situation in Sri Lanka is very volatile at present with elections in April and the peace process struggling. It seems as if DIMIA are trying to shovel people out of the country before the country situation deteriorates and return becomes impossible. Some families have been here for up to ten years and many have children born in Australia. Their work rights have been rescinded making survival difficult.
When children are registered for Primary or secondary school the forms now demand information on visa status plus photocopies of visas etc. This has two purposes-one to provide a check of children whose parents are on temporary visas and the second is to ensure that free education is not available to children whose parents hold certain visas. This past week a mother booked her daughters into a primary and secondary school, paid the voluntary levies and bought the uniforms. She was called into the office 4 days later and told that her daughter had to be removed from school unless her parents paid $ 11, 000 dollars –yes no mistake $11, 000 annual fees for a suburban high school. Ah the great generous country we have become –even too mean to provide education to children.
Meanwhile my uncle from the Bush tells that he and his neighbours lose thousands of dollars of sheep and cattle each year. A truck pulls up, a good dog and ten thousand dollars worth of animals are stolen and sold across the border two days later. When they complain to the politicians and police, they are told that they don’t have the resources to stop it.. Curious isn’t it how the government can find the resources to scour the land seeking workers who are working.
When people are seized in the
country they are often carted off to a desert detention
centre, with no access to lawyers or chance to say goodbye
to friends. They are just disappeared until someone in a
detention lets us know that there is a new arrival. We are
the witnesses. Please ask around and record similar
incidents of this government’s obsessive behaviour towards
people who are not Australian.