On humanity and the lack of it

The article below is from the Conversation:

The detention centre on Xmas Island: DIAC image

By flickr: DIAC images – Christmas Island Immigration Detention Centre, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=22901191

The Biloela Tamil family will finally be released from detention.

Immigration Minister Alex Hawke will announce this on Tuesday, but we have yet to learn the terms of that release.

There are several options. These include letting the Murugappan family live in the community while their current legal action continues, allowing them to apply for a non-refugee visa (the parents have been denied refugee status), or simply giving them some sort of other visa now.

The first course would be churlish, bring more criticism on the government, add to its taxpayer-funded legal costs, and risk inviting a new round of controversy at some later point.

The last option would be the simplest, cleanest way to deal with the whole unfortunate saga.

We should be clear about this. The government would not be removing the family from detention this week if the younger child Tharunicaa hadn’t become seriously ill, and had to be transferred from Christmas Island, where they have been since 2019, to a Perth hospital (accompanied by her mother).

To the extent the government is exercising compassion now, it is compassion driven by the bad publicity it is suffering.

The timing is also to pre-empt the parliamentary sitting, starting Tuesday, during which Michael McCormack is acting prime minister until Scott Morrison returns from overseas…

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