Thursday 3rd May 2012
Labor’s latest decision to house single adult male asylum seekers released on bridging visas in the spare rooms of Australian families under the Homestay program is a desperate and reckless policy from a government that has lost control of our borders, Shadow Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Scott Morrison said today.
“The fact that Australian families are now being asked to house asylum seekers who have arrived illegally by boat, including those whose claims have been rejected, shows just how desperate Labor have become over their failed border protection policies, which have seen almost 17,000 people now arrive on 302 boats,” Mr Morrison said.
“Homestay was designed to provide accommodation to international students who arrive legally with valid visas and study arrangements. It was not designed for single males who arrive on illegal boats, without documentation and are working their way through the taxpayer funded appeals process after having their asylum claims rejected.
“We have already seen in the detention network, including on the suburban streets of Melbourne in community detention, what can happen when asylum seekers do not get the answer they are looking for. Riots, protests, self harm, destruction of property, escapes, sexual assault and assault have all occurred, with charges being laid in some circumstances.
“To place asylum seekers in suburban homes and communities, where there is no consultation with neighbours or the police and just a hotline to call if something goes wrong has all the ingredients of another Labor asylum disaster in the making.
“The sheer scale of Labor's border protection failures has forced them to now effectively deputise suburban householders as Serco officers.
“At the last election Julia Gillard wanted to send asylum seekers to East Timor and then to Malaysia. Now she wants to send them to your granny flat out the back.
“When Australians expressed concern about rising costs of living, this was not an invitation for Julia Gillard to supplement household incomes by offering to pay the rent on your spare room or granny flat for asylum seekers.
“Rather than implement the Coalition’s proven border protection policies to stop the boats, Labor has done the opposite, announcing a 'let them in, let them out' policy for illegal boat arrivals that is only providing another reason for people to get on boats.
“They are now asking Australians to take Labor's border protection failures into their homes. Labor’s failure on our borders has become worse with every decision they have taken,” Mr Morrison said.
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