3,000 Prayers for the Release of Children in Detention Delivered to the Prime Minister
The Moderator of The Uniting Church Synod of NSW and the ACT has today (22 December) delivered 3,000 Christmas cards with prayers and messages from members of Uniting Church Congregations across NSW and the ACT, urging the Prime Minister to release all children and their families in immigration detention.
“The Uniting Church commends the Government’s transfer last week of 194 people including 94 children from Christmas Island to the mainland. We urge the Government to hasten their release into the community.
“We continue to hold grave concerns for the 167 children being held on Nauru.
“This Christmas we are praying for the urgent release of all children and their families in detention,” said Rev. Park.
There are currently more than 850 children locked in immigration detention centres in Australian facilities on the mainland and Nauru.
The Uniting Church has repeatedly expressed its concerns about the impact of mandatory, indefinite immigration detention of children.
“Detaining children in immigration detention facilities causes lifelong harm. While all detainees are vulnerable to the physical, emotional and psychological impacts of Australia’s immigration detention system, children and young people are particularly at risk.
“No child belongs in detention. We implore the Government to act now,” said Rev. Park.
Each Christmas card contains a message for the Government from members of the Uniting Church.
“I believe that all children in our world deserve to grow up feeling safe, loved and having hope for the future. Our country must share the responsibility for children in detention,” said a Congregation member from Lugarno Peakhurst Uniting Church.
Photo: The Moderator, Rev. Myung Hwa Park (above right) delivers 3000 Christmas Cards to the office of Prime Minister Tony Abbot with Jon O’Brien (above left) Social Justice Advocacy Coordinator for the Social Justice Unit.
For further information please contact:
Lisa Sampson, Media Consultant
M: 0414 947 000 P: 02 8267 4303
Gabe Kavanagh, Campaigns Coordinator, Social Justice Unit
M: 0477 717 170 P: 9687 6349