Asy­lum seek­ers need our sup­port and com­pas­sion

Townsville Bulletin - - Voice Of The North - Townsville Bul­letin

THANK YOU to John Mc Con­key (Townsville Bul­letin 8 March) for re­mind­ing us that the vast ma­jor­ity of asy­lum seek­ers who come to Aus­tralia by boat, do so to es­cape per­se­cu­tion and tor­ture. Only des­per­ate peo­ple would make the de­ci­sion to come here by such a risky means of travel. Many in Aus­tralia are un­der the mis­ap­pre­hen­sion that Aus­tralia is the first choice of most asy­lum seek­ers. In 2009, 377,000 peo­ple sought asy­lum in the in­dus­tri­alised coun­tries of the world. Of these only 6170 came to Aus­tralia the ma­jor­ity of peo­ple seek­ing asy­lum head f or North Amer­ica or Europe. In 2009, 33,000 asy­lum seek­ers went to Canada.AsJohn McCon­key says ev­ery hu­man de­serves peace and free­dom. Let us be more com­pas­sion­ate in our treat­ment of refugees and asy­lum seek­ers and do all we can to change the con­di­tions that force peo­ple to be­come refugees. PETER HAN­LEY,

An­nan­dale.

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