CLANCY OVERELL | Editor | CONTACT
As the Home Affairs Minister continues to pinball the traumatised young Tamil family from Biloela right around the country, the amount of money being spent by Peter Dutton’s in an attempt to look busy is only growing.
After keeping the family-of-four locked up since the birth of the youngest girl, the cost to the tax-payer is nearing $10 million, after taking into account the thousands of public servants involved in the countless failed attempts to send them back to Sri Lanka where they face severe persecution and potential death.
This 18-month process has seen the family dragged out of their weatherboard home in Biloela, separated from each-other, transferred to a Melbourne detention centre for an entire year, where the youngest of the two daughters’ teeth became rotten because of poor dental hygiene in the facility, before they were put on a plane home and sent back to Sri Lanka. A last minute court ruling then demanded the plane land in Darwin until further notice.
The two-year-old daughter received a last-minute reprieve on Friday when the Federal Court determined her case for asylum had not been properly heard by immigration officials. They were sent back to Melbourne that, and then Christmas Island in the dead of the night, so as to keep them away from the lawyers, medical professionals and advocates. A process that has been a fuckload more expensive then just leaving them in the bush and letting the old man keep working at the abattoir.
However, these figures are not even including the $180 million Scott Morrison spent re-opening Christmas Island Detention Centre to house the family of four.
Earlier, this year, the detention facility was Frankenstiened back to life at cost of around in an erratic and extremely costly knee-jerk by the PM amid fears the passing of a medivac bill would see sick and dying asylum seekers be transferred to the Australian mainland – a risk that really is worth the nearly a quarter of a billion tax payer dollars that was spent averting it.
At least it is getting some use by housing this likeable Tamil family of four that everyone wants to stay in Western Queensland.
Our reporters hit the streets to figure out what the average Joe and Jane are thinking.
Local tax-payer and swing voter, Cheryleen Grogan (55, Dental Assistant, Betoota Heights) says she’s torn on this particular issue.
“Look, I know Western Queensland needs to be protected from hard working immigrant families that just want to spend their life sweeping floors in a meat works and raise their kids without the fear of being killed by insurgents”
“But I also understand that spending up to $200 million trying to resurrect the White Australia policy is also a bit excessive”
“I just hopes this issue can be resolved without the kids having life long damage because they’ve spent their entire childhood in an array of detention centres while awaiting on the terrifying prospect of being flown back to a country that has a long and storied track record of murdering people like them with the most violent forms of torture”