Church leaders stand #WithRefugees on World Refugee Day

Rev Steve Francis, Moderator of the Uniting Church Western Australia, today called for the Australian Government not to remove support for people seeking asylum in our local community.

Echoing the calls made by refugee advocates across Australia, Western Australian churches are disappointed and concerned to see the Government progressing with plans to remove fundamental support for vulnerable families in the local community.

Steve said, “What marks us as a society is how we combine our efforts to make sure that everyone, especially those doing it tough, are okay. We are a better community when no-one is neglected, when we love our neighbour.”

The Right Reverend Jeremy James tssf, Administrator of the Anglican Diocese of Perth said, “On World Refugee Day we are reminded that people seeking safety need to be welcomed and supported. We are in admiration of the courage and resilience shown by people who come to our churches and community service organisations having fled persecution. However, we are worried that we will not be able to fill the gap that these cuts will create.

“People will still need to be able to pay their rent, pay for their medicines, pay for food and if they can’t, already overstretched agencies will be required to meet the extra demand.”

Deacon Greg Lowe, Director of the Western Australian Catholic Migrant and Refugee Office said, “It is not a time to inflict harsh measures on people who already face many challenges as they seek employment. Making people destitute does not help them find a job.

“The caring and sensible step to take is to reverse this policy and ensure access to the Status Resolution Support Services (SRSS) for all people seeking asylum until a resolution of their status is complete.”

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