As the convenors of the original Rural Australians for Refugees, which began in 2001, we are absolutely delighted to hear that key Victorian groups are working together to re-invigorate RAR.
This move will hopefully get the national network happening again at a time that couldn’t be more crucial for refugees and asylum seekers.
One of the great strengths of RAR was to bring together people of like minds but from often very different backgrounds, and to give them the opportunity to work for refugees in whatever way suited them.
Another key strength was giving a voice to rural people – a voice that wasn’t expected by politicians or people in the cities.
There is a new surge of activism around this issue ready to be harnessed. People have been missing RAR and its unique voice.
We are confident that the experienced and enthusiastic activists in central Victoria are the right people to get RAR back into the national debate.