Temporary protection visas (TPVs) offer no practical or long-term solution and only serve to punish very vulnerable refugees simply because they weren't lucky enough to arrive here by plane, the Australian Greens said today.
"The most damaging and cruel aspect of TPVs is they contain the constant threat that a person who has been recognised as a genuine refugee and fled danger may be returned to the source of their fear," Greens' immigration spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said.
"The trauma they may have suffered from torture and persecution - which is compounded in a detention centre -- is unable to be treated while a person is living in limbo, with the constant fear that at any moment, the Australian government will deport them back to danger.
"The ban against working, or accessing health services and no family reunion only makes this suffering worse.
"We know that the SIEV X was laden with mostly women and children when it sank in 2001 after the introduction of the Pacific Solution. These people felt they had no other option to reunite with their fathers and husbands than to take the dangerous journey.
"The Greens do not support TPVs and are disappointed the government would be so willing to reconsider bringing them back, but aren't surprised given it has been giving up much of what it once condemned during the Howard years."