Monday, February 14, 2005

Baxter Immigration Detention Centre - Detainees Statement

Baxter Detainees' Statement
- from -

The following is a statement from Baxter detainees regarding the detention of Cornelia Rau and the proposed government inquiry. Contact Ian Rintoul for any further information, 0417 275 713.

The public inquiry into the happenings of the unlawful detention of Cornelia Rau should not be short-sighted but expanded into an investigation about the inhuman treatment of all those who reside in Baxter detention centre

They are all treated by the same psychologists who are unable to distinguish between severely ill mental behaviour and deliberate misbehaviour.

Severely ill detainees are punished as if it were misbehaviour.

Baxter detention centre has a specific compound for this where most of Cornelia Rau’s time and [that of] many others is spent, isolated, locked in a room for 18 hours a day and/or constantly harassed in ways hard to understand and always denied – like waking people in a disturbing manner and provoking them into matters of self-harm and anger [and] always being blamed.

Most of the officers working in the compound, Red 1, are new to the centre. It takes a great deal of time for officers to realise that this is not a criminal detention and to treat the detainees as such.

Also in the Red 1 compound detainees are severely restricted. There is next to nothing in forms of recreation - no access to gym or education facilities. Detainees are expected not only to be alone, but alone and feeling that nobody cares, which is exactly the plight of those [ie those in detention] who are unable to comprehend their situation.

Not understanding why you are in Baxter detention, with no clue of when it will end, together with feeling alone and that no-one cares, brings even someone with strong mental health to the brink of insanity.

Without proper psychological help, detainees may never find their way back.

We here at Baxter detention plea for the pious and compassionate people of this great nation to not only look at the small picture of one Cornelia Rau but at the big picture of the humanitarian catastrophe of all those still suffering in this historical precedent of inhumanity. This is called Australian immigration detention.

Baxter detainees extend our best wishes for the recovery and future health of Cornelia Rau.

Read the Detainee Statement here...

Photos from Inside Baxter IDC by Damian McDonald - from the National Library of Australia

You can read story and see all the above pics here..


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