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Human Rights Commissioner to visit Christmas Island and Cocos Island Detention Centres

Commission Commission – General

17
January 2002

Human Rights Commissioner
to visit Christmas Island and Cocos Island Detention Centres

Next week the Human
Rights Commissioner, Dr Sev Ozdowski will inspect the conditions at the
Christmas Island and Cocos Island Detention Centres.

The Commissioner
has a continuing role in monitoring the conditions in detention centres
and the processes for dealing with unauthorised arrivals. Detainees can
also make complaints to the Commission under the Human
Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Act
if they believe their
human rights have been breached.

During 2001, the
Commissioner visited centres in Port Hedland, Perth and Curtin Immigration
Reception and Processing Centre as well as Woomera and Maribyrnong in
Victoria.

The purpose of his
visit to Christmas Island and Cocos Island is twofold. Firstly, to conduct
a routine inspection of the detention facilities which is part of his
role as Human Rights Commissioner. Secondly, to collect relevant information
or submissions pertaining to the Children in Detention Inquiry,
details of which can be found at http://www.humanrights.gov.au/human_rights/children_detention/index.html

The Commissioner
will prepare a report which he will provide to government in the early
part of the year along with his report on visits to other detention centres.
Any information or submissions received will be collated and will form
part of his Children in Detention Inquiry report.

Dr Ozdowski will
not comment publicly on conditions in the centres at this time.

Contact: Jan Payne
on 02 9284 9791 or 0419 258 597

Last
updated 2 December 2001.