Effective Access for Immigration Detention Monitoring

Vicki Mau, National Manager Migration Support Programs, vmau@redcross.org.au


Note: This report has been prepared jointly with Government
The Department of Immigration and Border Protections (DIBP) continues to facilitate the ongoing access for ARC to all Immigration Detention Facilities, and increased access to Alternative Places Of Detention (APOD) in Western Australia, Victoria, Queensland and Northern Territory. Given the current arrangements are suitable to both parties, it is agreed that the review of the current Memorandum of Understanding should be postponed.

There is increased positive engagement with the Department’s International Division and ARC, regarding the situation of asylum seekers and refugees transferred to Australia from Nauru and Manus and the US resettlement agreement. The Department will continue to engage with ARC to keep them informed on the progress of this agreement.

The Department continues to facilitate regular high level meetings between ARC and key departmental Senior Executives to discuss issues of concern and issues arising in ARC reports.

ARC was invited by DIBP to review a number of key Detention Standard Operating Procedures. ARC provided useful feedback. A concern raised by ARC was that they had not been provided opportunity to consult on a range of other key policies and procedures, in particular, the Child Safeguarding Framework and Detention Capability Framework before finalisation. The Child Protection Panel invited Australian Red Cross Migration Support Programs to a briefing on the findings on the review, and consulted with them during the course of the review. DIBP has also indicated its support for the Child Protection Panel to meet with Australian Red Cross again during the follow up review later in 2017. The Department continues to look for varied opportunities to consult with ARC on significant policy and procedural shifts.