While secrecy persists, abuses continue
Scrutiny of Australia’s treatment of asylum seekers has not been warmly received by the Abbott government. Rather than addressing the continuing abuse of vulnerable people, the government has preferred to turn on the messenger. One such messenger has been the president of the Australian Human Rights Commission, Professor Gillian Triggs who was the target of pernicious personal attack and demands for her resignation following the release of the commission’s 2014 report into children in immigration detention. Others include ten Save the Children workers who were ordered off Nauru by the government late last year amidst allegations that their accounts of abuse of asylum seekers were fabricated and that they had encouraged asylum seekers to engage in self-harm. The allegations against the workers were subsequently found to be baseless.