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Community release for most fragile detainees a positive step

The government's decision to begin transferring asylum seekers out of detention and into the community is a positive one, the Australian Greens said today.

"This decision should be a matter of course for the Immigration Department, rather than detaining them indefinitely," Greens' immigration spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said.

"There's no use waiting until a person has been damaged by their time in detention before considering they are ready for a bridging visa.

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Australian Greens move on Russian anti-gay law, but major parties reject it

Australian Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young has today spoken out against a bill before the St Petersburg Legislature in Russia that will criminalise public discussion of LGBTI issues.

"The bill before the St Petersburg parliament represents an appalling infringement on human rights for LGBTI people," the Greens' spokesperson for sexual orientation and gender identity said.

"The bill is being presented by the ruling party in Russia. This is a party that has some history when it comes to the persecution of LGBTI people.

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Sarah's urgent motion on amending the Marriage Act to achieve marriage equality

Senator HANSON-YOUNG (South Australia) (15:43): At the request of Senator Siewert, I move:
That, in the opinion of the Senate, the following is a matter of urgency:

The recognition that an increasing majority of the Australian community supports marriage equality and believes it is time for the federal parliament to amend the Marriage Act to provide for this.

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Greens’ bill to keep Indonesian children out of Australian adult prisons

The Greens will in the Senate this week introduce a bill which seeks to stop any more Indonesian children accused of people smuggling from being detained in Australian adult prisons.

"At least 34 Indonesian children have been freed by Australian courts and returned home after months of unnecessary anguish and detention," Greens' immigration and children spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said today.

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Greens back Jakarta’s call for all Indonesian children to be released from Australian jails

The Australian Greens have today welcomed the news another Indonesian boy, Dion Domun, has been released by a Melbourne court after people smuggling charges against him were dropped.

"Children such as Dion should never be held in adult prisons, whether that's here in Australia or Indonesia or elsewhere," Greens' spokesperson for immigration and children, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said today.

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Greens demand independent inquiry into detained Indonesian children

All Indonesians who are detained in Australian adult jails should be immediately released while they undergo processes to determine their ages, the Australian Greens said today.

"The Gillard government should urgently commission an independent inquiry into why these Indonesian children are being imprisoned in Australian jails," Greens' immigration spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said today.

"This unacceptable policy breaches Australia's obligations under the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and also breaches appropriate standards under our domestic laws.

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People smuggling bill misleads Australian public

The government's hastily-drafted Deterring People Smuggling Bill 2011 misleads Australians because it does nothing to disrupt smuggling or stop the trade's kingpins from exploiting asylum seekers and poor Indonesian fishermen, the Australian Greens said today.

"This Bill, and the Commonwealth charges it seeks to amend, fails to address the fact the people smuggling organisers deem the Indonesian crew as expendable as the leaky boats," Greens' immigration spokesperson, Sen. Sarah Hanson-Young, said today.

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