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One of the few young families keen to relocate to a drought and flood stricken meatworks town out the back of Gladstone are today facing imminent deportation for being brown, to Sri Lanka, where they face persecution as failed asylum seekers.
The Western Queensland town of Biloela, that is already struggling to get young people to live and work there, is now one family less, after Border Force kicked in the front door of a family of Sri Lankan asylum seekers who’s visa had expired by 24 hours.
Nadesalingam and Priya, and their children aged 4 and 2, have lived in Biloela for several years. That was until Australian Border Force officers, police and Serco guards raided their home at dawn last year, taking the husband and wife and their two Australia-born children into custody.
Biloela townsfolks say Priya and Nadesalingam, and their two Australian-born daughters, are welcome additions to their central Queensland town, which like most of regional Australian centres, is struggling to appeal to young families.
However, today government officials have blocked an application for an assessment of the dangers the youngest Tharunicaa may face if she is sent to Sri Lanka.
Some considered this application the family’s last hope of remaining in Australia. Where they have lived as well-liked contributors to the bush town of Biloela – with the old man working in the abattoir and the two young girls attending daycare in town.
Both daughters have made the news recently, after it was revealed that Tharunicaa was denied birthday cake when she turned two, her sister has also been denied dental surgery for rotten teeth that have come about from their grim and under-resourced childhoods spent in detention.
Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton says sorry but, if he lets these people stay, then he’ll set the wrong precedent.
“It’s not like they are Chinese high-rollers flying into the Crown” said Dutton.
“Or French babysitters for Liberal Party donors”
“These people are working class migrants. Big difference. They don’t even have lobbyists”
Barnaby Joyce was approached for comment, but said he was too busy marching around Sydney with the God-botherers complaining about unformed embryos to worry about the livelihoods of two little brown girls from the bush.