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November 8, 2011


by refugeeactioncoalitionsydney

A 25 year old Iranian man, accepted as a refugee two months ago, has attempted suicide at the Darwin detention centre.

The Iranian refugee is one of five detainees in the north one compound who are supposedly under 24 hour suicide watch by Serco guards. Yet around 3.30pm this (Tuesday 8 Nov) afternoon, he managed to get onto the roof of the gymnasium with a noose.

This is the second man in four days under Serco’s 24 hour suicide watch program to have managed to attempt suicide despite the constant surveillance.

“Serco’s suicide watch program is dramatically failing. The Darwin detention centre has become a theatre of the absurd. Guards are posted for 24 hours noting when the detainee sleeps, wakes, sneezes, eats – this cannot be dressed up as any kind of psychiatric support program.” said Ian Rintoul, a spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition.

“Neither Serco nor the Immigration department seem to have learned anything from the string of suicides in the detention centres. People driven to self harm and suicide cannot be properly treated in the very places that create their anxieties. There are no excuses for the Minister not to intervene.

“Again we have a refugee waiting for security clearance attempting to take his own life. This man, like Shooty, the Tamil refugee who committed suicide in Villawood 11 days ago, should not be in detention.

“ASIO has stated publicly that they do not require people to be in immigration detention while they make their security assessments.”

For more information contact Ian Rintoul 0417 275 713

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