- Department of Home Affairs response to report.
Summary of key issues
- Accommodation, sanitation and exercise facilities at the AITA are of an adequate standard for short periods of detention. However, in light of its small size and the basic nature of its facilities, the AITA is not an appropriate facility for people who are likely to be in detention for extended periods of time.
- Feedback on staff at the AITA was generally positive.
- There is a regular schedule of excursions from the AITA.
- The Commission did not identify major or systemic concerns regarding the provision of health care at the AITA.
- The new policy prohibiting all mobile phone use may restrict access to external communication to a greater degree than is necessary to ensure safety and security, particularly in a lower-security facility like the AITA.
- Most of the people detained at the AITA remain at the facility for a short period of time. However, the Commission also met with individuals who had been detained for prolonged periods of time, in some cases for a year or more.
- The Commission is particularly concerned about the circumstances of a small number of vulnerable individuals detained at the AITA, who had serious health issues requiring a high level of care. While acknowledging the efforts of facility staff and contractors to ensure adequate care for these individuals, the Commission considers that a detention facility is simply not a suitable environment for managing the care of people with significant health conditions, in circumstances where they are not being punished for committing a crime and they do not pose an unacceptable risk to the broader community.
- Status Resolution Officers are not currently able to provide people in detention with adequate case management support.