Federal

Feb 9, 2018

The increasingly deranged diary of a detention centre visitor

If the Department of Home Affairs was trying to stop detention centre visits with its new, punitive visitation procedures, then it may have worked.

Rebekah Holt

Freelance journalist

Border Force

Last month the Department of Home Affairs changed the visitation protocols for Australian detention centres, provoking outrage and hunger strikes among detainees. Here, Rebekah Holt attempts to navigate the new system for her weekly Sunday visit.

Monday, Jan 29

12.37pm: I have to open an ImmiAccount with the Department of Home Affairs so I can make my bookings. I resist the urge to make my password “PeterDuttonSux” because I am a serious journalist.

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3 comments

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3 thoughts on “The increasingly deranged diary of a detention centre visitor

  1. Pamela

    The online system is an insult. After three weeks it is still riddled with blocks and faults which mean that getting through the LOGIN stage and then receiving permission days later to apply onto the 11 step form is a miracle if achieved. It took me 45 minutes to apply to see 5 people 7 days hence. Others record similar times when the system is working. When it fails (often) it takes days.
    I received this alarming refusal later confirmed as an error- no apology
    “Your application was incomplete
    Operational requirements do not permit this visit to proceed at this time
    You are currently restricted from applying to visit an immigration detention facility
    You failed to declare criminal convictions as required in your application
    The person in detention you have applied to visit is no longer accommodated at this immigration detention facility
    The person in detention you have applied to visit has indicated they do not wish for this visit to proceed at this time”
    We are asked to give our personal details passports drivers licence ph home address, bank cards credit cards etc to these spambots who can spit out an unearned criminal conviction without even an apology.

  2. RoscoHill

    Department of Home Affairs changed the visitation protocols for Australian detention centres. You got it wrong, its to streamline the approvals to visit, their streamlining to just put another brick wall in the road of good people who are trying to be more helpful than the department. Id put emotive in but don’t know how

  3. [email protected]

    something has to be done about the treatment in the detention centres in Australia, my brother was in northam det centre and Christmas island for just over a year (ian Wightman deportation back to uk) please look up the article and he will never be the same again and he was one of the strong ones, but what serco guards get away with is a crime. doesn’t matter what country they are from they deserve to be treated as human beings not treated like animals sorry worse then animals. you should have a quick read of the Stanford prison experiment that was conducted in 1971, I was wondering if serco used this as a how to menu.

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