Rural Australians for Refugees
making a statement in rural communities.

Marie Sellstrom – 8 September 2018

For current articles on refugee issues – ARAN News

Andrew Wilkie’s Refugee Protection Bill

Community Refugee Sponsorship Initiative – CRSI

Kaldor Centre Podcast: Community-led refugee sponsorship: What can Australia learn from the UK experience?
This event with Dr Russell Rook and Khanh Hoang was co-hosted by the Australian National University, the Community Refugee Sponsorship Initiative and the Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law.

What other countries are doing …

Call for an Australian Bill of Rights

Prof Triggs, former president of the Australian Human Rights Commission, used her speech at the recent National RAR Conference to call for an Australian Bill of Rights.

‘‘Unlike almost every other comparable country Australia has no bill of rights against which government policies, legislation and actions can be benchmarked,’’ Prof Triggs told the 300-strong conference.

She gave examples of how the human rights of people seeking asylum have suffered because courts have not had such a legal tool to use.

How Human Rights can be Defended – Gillian Triggs in Conversation with Julian Burnside
This event was recorded and is available on the bottom of the the linked page

Gillian Triggs – An Australian Bill of Rights – Amnesty International Australia – Streamed live on 18 Apr 2018 – Amnesty Speakers Series

Gillian Triggs – The case for a Charter of Rights in Australia – Gillian Triggs – Melbourne University’s Dean’s Lecture Series 2018 – Recorded 23 July 2018

RAR Yass, Yass High School,  and the 40 Hour Famine Backpack Challenge 2018


Refugee Welcome Zones: Local Councils building a culture of welcome for refugees

A Refugee Welcome Zone (RWZ) is a Local Government Area which has made a commitment in spirit to welcoming refugees into the community, upholding the human rights of refugees, demonstrating compassion for refugees and enhancing cultural and religious diversity in the community. The Refugee Welcome Zone initiative began in June 2002 as part of Refugee Week celebrations.

The Refugee Welcome Zone initiative focuses on welcoming refugees into our communities.

Welcoming Cities: Supporting Local Councils and communities towards greater social cohesion and economic success.

Welcoming Cities in an initiative that supports local councils, and their communities, to become more welcoming and inclusive. We are creating a national network of cities, shires, towns and municipalities who are committed to an Australia where everyone can belong and participate in social, economic and civic life.

Welcoming Cities initiative has a broader community focus than refugees.
Download a summary Welcoming Cities Outline May 2018

The Refugee Council of Australia has three teleconference working groups on key campaign issues: Permanent Protection, Ending Offshore Processing, Increasing the Refugee Quota/Special Humanitarian Quotas. You can join any of these if interested by contacting .

Other News that RAR feels is important

Boat ‘turnbacks’ in Australia: a quick guide to the statistics since 2001 – 
Compiled by Parliamentary Library staff  – Updated 20 July 2018

Legal Representation

The Turnbull government launched an unprecedented attack on people seeking asylum who after waiting over 4 years to apply for asylum, suddenly had to lodge their refugee application.

Refugee legal services across Australia urgently appeal to you to help fund lawyers in order to keep the people safe.

To act now, go to one of these refugee legal services in Australia and donate:

Queanbeyan Council has recommitted to being a Refugee Welcome Zone as a part of it’s Refugee Week celebrations.  The event was held at the Multilingual Centre which has been helping Refugees and Migrants for 40 years.  In the photo below, centre Mayor Tim Overall flanked by John Gunn, Coordinator of the MLC, and Marg Rasa, Vice President RAR National.

What bodes the future?

RAR National has been talking to both the Coalition and the Opposition about the approach to resettling refugees in country Australia. We have been told that the future  Humanitarian Program will increase, will involve settlement in rural and regional areas and will likely to include a larger proportion of single women with children. We know that the settlement needs of women can differ to those of men.  Here is a link to some recent research.