An open letter from Geraldton Doctors to the Prime Minister, regarding children in detention

The Hon Malcolm Turnbull, Prime Minister of Australia

The Hon Peter Dutton MP, Minister for Immigration and Border Protection

Ms Melissa Price MP, Member for Durack

We, doctors of the Geraldton community, have a moral and legal obligation to report abuse of children living under Australian jurisdiction. It is unacceptable in our professional opinion that the Australian government knowingly places the health of vulnerable children at risk through its policy of mandatory immigration detention. The appalling secrecy provisions of the Australian Border Force Act, which actively restrict doctors from fulfilling their duty to advocate for the best interests of their patients, further compromise the health and safety of children in detention. 

We stand with our colleagues around the country in condemning the detention of children. We advocate that they must be release into the Australian community immediately where they can resume their childhoods and begin to recover from the harms inflicted by immigration detention. 

Earlier this month the Senate passed a motion to remove all children from offshore detention. We the undersigned call on you to ensure passage of this bill through Parliament and that you amend the appalling secrecy provisions of the preventing health professionals and others from reporting abuse and other human rights violations in offshore detention facilities. 

Your sincerely,