Serious allegations of abuse, self-harm and neglect of asylum seekers in relation to the Nauru Regional Processing Centre
1. The Law Council welcomes the opportunity to provide the following comments to the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee (References Committee) in respect of its inquiry into serious allegations of abuse, self-harm and neglect of asylum seekers in relation to the Nauru Regional Processing Centre, and any like allegations in relation to the Manus Regional Processing Centre (the Inquiry).
2. The Law Council’s submission will focus on the following Terms of Reference:
c. the obligations of the Commonwealth Government and contractors relating to the treatment of asylum seekers, including the provision of support, capability and capacity building to local Nauruan authorities,
e. the role an independent children's advocate could play in ensuring the rights and interests of unaccompanied minors are protected,
f. the effect of Part 6 of the Australian Border Force Act 2015,
i. any other related matters
3. The Law Council notes that the References Committee will have access to all inquiry submissions and documents of the preceding committee relating to its inquiry into the conditions and treatment of asylum seekers and refugees at the regional processing centres in the Republic of Nauru and Papua New Guinea (PNG). The Law Council therefore recommends the References Committee consider its submission to that inquiry (Nauru and PNG Submission), as well as its submission to the Select Committee on Recent Allegations relating to Conditions and Circumstances at the Regional Processing Centre in Nauru.