Baby Asha made headlines when doctors at Brisbane’s Lady Cilento Hospital refused to discharge her, preventing her to be deported back to Nauru. Because of the increasing number of people seeking asylum in Australian shores, the government has since become strict about its immigration policies regarding refugees.
One-year-old Asha has been recovering from burns she suffered while staying in an offshore detention center on the nearby island of Nauru with her parents. Their tent had caught on fire and the baby was rushed to a hospital in Brisbane for treatment.
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She was born in Australia but her parents are from Nepal and have been seeking Asylum. The hospital refused to discharge Asha if she was going back to the detention center because doctors said it was unsafe for her. The hospital said she would not be released until a suitable home environment was found.
She was finally discharged when the government said they would let the family stay in community detention in Australia. However officials say once the baby and the parents have recovered, they will be sent back to detention in Naru.
Baby Asha’s family is one of the thousands currently awaiting their fate in detention centers in Australia.
On Sunday immigration minister Peter Dutton said the family would be released into community detention, but would eventually return to Nauru.
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“We are not going to allow a message to get out that people can come to Nauru, come to Australia for medical assistance and then that will be their ticket out into Australian society,” he said. “That is not going to happen.”
And then there are those who see the government’s actions as dehumanizing, such as Australian Medical Association president Brian Owler.
“The dehumanization of the asylum seekers by Minister Dutton and others referring to these people as ‘illegals,’ combined with cloaking them in secrecy in offshore processing, has made it more difficult for the Australian public to identify with these people.”
He also said that the government is making these asylum seekers seem less worthy, and that the Syrian asylum seekers arriving in Europe or waiting in Turkish refugee camps seem more human and in need of help.
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