WITH the seemingly intractable problem of asylum seekers in Australian public discussion, would it be possible to present to all political parties a circuit breaker, a proposal for wide solid support of a Community Refugee Settlement (CRS) Scheme?
The Christian Church has a splendid organisational model in the parish system.
With hundreds of offers from parish councils, a training course, a supervisory body for every 50 or so units, each such geographical group could assist perhaps one family at a time.
The government decision makers would find it difficult to abandon the detention option after so many years. But it would be equally difficult if confronted with a groundswell, a well-thought-out scheme, eventually national, to welcome such distressed people into reliable practical small communities.
Once authenticity has been established, a family could be expected to move quickly into an Australian-supported welcome.
Other Australian supportive groups would surely follow once expertise and experience have been built up.
There are not numbers in detention that could not be managed with such an initiative fairly quickly.
Those citizens who haven’t time could probably offer financial support.
Hand wringing about children’s mental health and condemnation of cruel policy can be overcome by a grassroots, on-the-ground CRS Scheme.
The politics is tricky. It’s always voluntary; if you don’t approve don’t do it.
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