The Migration Amendment (Urgent Medical Treatment) Bill, proposed by the Member for Wentworth, Dr Kerryn Phelps is being debated in the House of Representatives today 12th February.
This Bill seeks to guarantee that those held on Nauru and Manus Island, for whom Australia has a duty of care, receive the essential, timely and appropriate medical care required when they are sick. This may mean being transferred to another medical facility. Members of Catholic Religious Australia strongly support the view that medical professionals are best qualified to make sound decisions on health and well-being.
We believe it is incumbent on those in government, who represent us, to act with integrity, to treat others as we ourselves would want to be treated. We strongly urge our political leaders to support Dr. Phelps’ amendment to the Bill. “This will go a long way to ensuring that the sick in our care, are afforded the dignity and respect we all deserve,” said Monica Cavanagh rsj, President of Catholic Religious Australia.
This Amendment has already passed two readings in the Senate and includes a specific power for the Minister to refuse a transfer to any off-shore location on National Security grounds.
Members of Catholic Religious Australia are deeply disturbed by the continuing policy of ‘show no mercy’ being visited upon refugees and asylum seekers, held in indefinite detention on Nauru and Manus Island. We believe this Bill is a touchstone for a mature and civil society.