Thanks to all of those who have kindly (and not so kindly – they are the majority and are all Labor/Greens staffers, Union heavies and staff and good old Get Up and old leftie journalists) made media and social media comment on recent media reports on the Senate Estimate Committee on Professor Triggs and the partisan-ly titled report on children in detention “Forgotten Children”.

If any of those who have abused me for not reading this partisan , inaccurate report, had themselves bothered to read the facts on children in detention from any number of Estimates on Immigration – which sadly the Human Rights Commission (AHRC)itself didn’t bother to read – then they may have not been so quick to rush to social media.

The facts:

  • Under Howard – zero children in detention
  • Under Labor’s “welcome to illegals” policy when boats were landing by the day, there were 1992 children in detention. From AHRC – no major Inquiry.
  • At the 2013 Election, 1743 children in detention.
  • January 2014 – 1006 children in detention, after major efforts by the Abbott Government – AHRC announce major Inquiry
  • 24 February 2015 - the day of the Estimates Committee - 126 children in detention in Australia (AHRC falsely said 328).

Enormous effort has gone into caring for the children in detention with the very best medical and mental health and lifestyle support at significant cost.  These children are anything but “forgotten”– maybe they were under Labor but not currently.

In Estimates a year ago, and in November last year, the partisan nature of the Inquiry was becoming evident.  The actual evidence of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection which commented on the Draft Report, was largely ignored by the AHRC.  See the addendum to the Report where the Departments objections are published – but unfortunately mostly ignored.

I did read that addendum to the Report – which confirmed the partisan nature of the Report and confirmed also my decision not to waste my time on a report which was clearly partisan, about an issue which had largely been addressed – both getting the Children out of Detention, and looking after those with trauma issues from their time in detention.

As the boats have been stopped, there is little likelihood of children ever again being put in immigration detention and therefore the report is worthless and irrelevant - unless of course Labor/Greens are returned to Government.

For those who have accused me of being sexist for trying to protect witnesses by admonishing Senators who were shouting, yelling and interjecting constantly in an orchestrated campaign of disruption, my admonishment was to the perpetrators regardless of their gender. It just so happens that all of the Labor and Greens Senators at the hearing, who were the perpetrators, were females.

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