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Refugees Fear Abuse of Trust

A BRISBANE Church worker with refugees has called for the creation of a representative committee of trusted people to whom refugees or others with allegations of abuse at detention centres can take their complaints.

Director of Brisbane archdiocese’s Centre for Multicultural Pastoral Care, Jose Zepeda was responding to allegations that women and children at the Woomera refugee detention centre had been sexually abused.

Mr Zepeda said he had heard rumours of various abuses in detention centres.

“But if people have allegations or personal complaints of abuse they need to have somewhere they feel they can go without fear,” he said.

“Asian nations respect Australia for its fairness, but this respect is in danger in our treatment of refugees.

“A commission of trust, to which these people could go confidently, could benefit not only the abused people, but the Department (of Immigration and Ethnic Affairs) and Australia,” he said.

Written by: Staff writers
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