Assessing Australia’s obligations towards asylum seekers

Assessing Australia’s obligations towards asylum seekers
Assessing Australia’s obligations towards asylum seekers

Assessing Australia’s obligations towards asylum seekers

Order Instructions:

The welfare and future of asylum seekers in Australia have been very contentious contemporary issues. Findings based on content analysis of media releases in 2001 and 2002 reveal the unrelentingly negative way in which the federal government portrayed asylum seekers.


Assessing Australia’s obligations towards asylum seekers

Influence of the international human rights law on the sovereignty of Australia

In the recent years, public debate has increasingly related the issue of border protection with the presence of asylum seekers at the shores of Australia (Brennan, 2012). The Immigration and Multicultural and Foreign Affairs Minister has occasionally emphasized, with reference to unauthorized boat arrivals, that Australia as a sovereign country needs to defend the integrity of its borders. The Australian courts have also made affirmations on the issue of who should and should not enter and remain in the country. It’s evident that Australia is entitled to establish, administer and execute its immigration policy as well as maintain national security, and these objectives inevitably involve border protection (Creek, 2014).

Today’s concept of sovereignty, nevertheless, is not absolute. Sovereignty does not imply that a nation may do whatever it wants, whenever it wants, to whomever it wants. If it was this way, then there would be a breakdown in international cooperation. Australia, as a sovereign nation, acknowledges that respecting certain rights and obligations is paramount to the maintenance of its position in the international community (Foster, 2011).

Australia has shown its willingness to participate in the international legal system as well as entering into agreements with other sovereign states. In this regard, Australia has agreed to bind itself to the international system of rights and duties, which influences the manner in which sovereign states conduct their affairs. Some of the international rules that Australia has bound itself in the context of asylum seekers include; the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UNDHR), the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), the 1967 Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees (the Refugee Convention).Through the ratification of these treaties, Australia has shown its express agreement to ensure that new laws are enacted or existing laws are applied in line with the requirements of the treaties. Thus, as a ‘global citizen’, Australia must act in obedience to the treaties to which it has bound itself. Accordingly, the country needs to protect human rights and humanitarian treaties while protecting the integrity of its borders. In addition, Australia, as a ‘global citizen’ governed by the rule of law, has bound itself to the duty of enforcing its international rights and responsibilities by integrating them into the practices of the domestic courts, executive, and legislature. Australia is thus obligated to protect the fundamental human rights and freedoms of all asylum seekers who arrive in the country, regardless of the manner of their arrival (Foster, 2014).

Australia’s response to asylum seekers

The complexity and magnitude of issues arising from the influx of refugees and asylum seekers has posed numerous challenges to the world’s destination countries such as Australia. Australia has continually struggled with the maintenance of a balance between the protection of national borders and protection of millions of asylum seekers. Historically, Australia has for a long time accepted refugees for resettlement. Since 1945, over 700,000 displaced persons and refugees have settled in the country. Despite the country’s long-term commitment, Australia is experiencing a massive deal of misinformation and confusion in the public debate with regard to ‘boat people’, ‘queue jumpers’, ‘illegals’, refugees, and asylum seekers. These terms are often used interchangeably and/or incorrectly.

The Australian offshore policy provides for the detention of unauthorized both arrivals at offshore places such as Christmas Island until a Visa is granted or they are removed from Australia. The asylum seekers who do not meet the definition of refugees as provided under the UN Convention are resettled. The government has also set a program for assisting some asylum seekers while their applications for protection are being processed. The forms of assistance include welfare services such as professional assistance and income support and temporary eligibility for Medicare. However, these assistance are not usually granted to all applicants as one must be in financial hardship and their eligibility is usually reviewed by the government on a regular basis to establish any changes in the situations. Nevertheless, Australia has been criticized for using too much authority over its sovereignty to subject asylum seekers to unfavorable conditions that contravene international human rights law and the refugee law.

Australian politicians have been criticized for fueling anti-asylum seeker sentiments among the people in order to get votes, by labeling asylum seekers as “queue jumpers” and relating them to criminal activities such as smuggling (Tuckfield, 2014). More recently, there was a “stop the boats” campaign that aimed at reducing the number of asylum seekers drowning at the sea. In addition, the government has been advocating for the incarceration of innocent asylum seekers through adverse ASIO assessments. Furthermore, the former government ensured that foreign workers were placed at the back of the queue for Australian jobs.

The UN Human Rights Committee, in 2013, stated that Australia had acted in violation of the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) through the arbitrary detention of refugees, failure to provide an effective judicial remedy, and subjecting detainees to harsh conditions which are psychologically harmful (Creek, 2014). Thus, Australia should make efforts to ensure that the rights of asylum seekers are protected.


Brennan, F. (2012). Australia’s 20 year search for the right asylum policy. Eureka Street, 22(12), 27.

Creek, T. G. (2014). Starving for freedom: an exploration of Australian government policies, human rights obligations and righting the wrong for those seeking asylum. The International Journal of Human Rights, (ahead-of-print), 1-29.

Foster, M. (2011). Refugees, Asylum Seekers and the Rule of Law. International Journal of Refugee Law, 23(2), 431-434.

Tuckfield, H. (2014). Australia’s Troubling Asylum Policy. The Diplomat. Retrieved from:

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Human Dignity and Forced Adoption

Human Dignity and Forced Adoption
Human Dignity and Forced Adoption

Human Dignity and Forced Adoption

Order Instructions:

Human Dignity and the forced adoption policy in Australia in the 50?s, 60?s and 70?s.
How is the case study on forced adoption in Australia in the 50?s, 60?s and 70?s and issue of human dignity?
From the case study presented.
Explain why you believe this to be an issue where human dignity is a critical factor.
Analyse at least two perspectives on this particular case. The following questions should act as a guide in your analysis.
1. What understanding of the concept of human dignity appears to be at work in each perspective?
2. What are the social attitudes, norms, or circumstances that may have influenced each perspective? To what extent do these social attitudes, norms, or circumstances impact on the understanding of human dignity in each perspective?
3. How does each perspective justify particular actions or choices with reference to human dignity?
4. In this unit, we have considered human dignity and the human person as multidimensional. If you consider in isolation the argument of each perspective in turn, what aspects of human dignity could be jeopardised by any actions arising from those perspectives?
5. Evaluation of the implications and consequences of adopting a perspective in isolation

Perspectives are:

Perspective 1: The practice of forced adoption makes a false distinction between the capacity of young, largely unwed, mothers to raise their own children, and the capacity of married, more financially secure, mothers, to do the same. The practice of forced adoption hindered these young mothers from demonstrating their innate dignity.

Perspective 2: The shame and guilt, felt by women who found themselves pregnant out of wedlock and were forced or coerced into give up their babies, resulted in their loss of dignity. The national apology was intended to restore this lost dignity.

Perspective 3: Social mores in the 1950s, 60s and 70s deemed women in particular situations to be unfit mothers. The perceived immoral actions of unmarried pregnant women led them to be treated without dignity.


Human Dignity and Forced Adoption

Life is all about getting a life that one would be proud of and would like our future generations taking part in. Majority of people would love to get married and have a family with their spouses and enjoy the fruits of their labor, however, there are those that are not able to enjoy that luxury. There are the ladies and girls that had boyfriends that did not want to wait for marriage or take part in safe sex. These ladies are those that society has come to look down upon because they most often than not end up being ladies that have children out of wedlock. However, despite the fact that society would look down upon them, they still would love to be the proud mothers of their own children. There is the freedom in today’s society that one is given that allows them to put up their children for adoption of their own free will. But take a step back and imagine the lady that does not have the luxury of making such a choice for herself. She is forced by society to give up her child because she is not married (Quartly, Swain & Cuthbert, 2013). The act is inhumane and goes against all the threads that a mother would have on her body. It is a sign that the lady was not dignified in having a child and being called a mother because she is not married. Such was the case in Australia. The aim of this thesis is to echo the fact that the forced adoption of children that was carried out in Australia was an action of human indignity.

The idea that there was a form of distinction between a mother that was unwed and young and one that was married and more financially secure in their capacity to be good parents was a distinction that was entirely false (Marshall & McDonald, 2001). In the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, there was the belief that a child would be better raised by parents that were married and in a family. It was a belief that emerged when majority of the children that lived in the streets were mainly from broken or single parent households. This resulted in there being a different understanding to the life that a child would have. It may be true that a parent that is more financially secure and married is able to give their children a better life than one that is unwed. However, this is just a distinction that is made based on the size of bank that the mother may have and the things that may be bought with the money, but such is not always the case (Kateb, 2011). Some parents that are well off should be able to give their children the love and care that they deserve but such is not always the case.

These parents may give their wealth to other vices that would make their children turn to other vices and works so as to get the things that they do not receive at home. Thus is the reason why girls look to relationships with older men to find love that they should receive at home (Spark & Cuthbert, 2009). Most mothers that are unwed most of the times give the best care to their children because they know the difficulties that lie in the world better than the parent that is financially secure. These mothers would be better in the care of these children but the forced adoption that was enacted between the 50s and 70s was a sign that the Australian government did not believe in this. Thus pointing to the false distinction in the care offered by unwed mothers and those that were wed and financially stable (Josephs, 2008). The distinction was one that was baseless. It as an act that hindered these ladies from proving their capability of being parents and this stripping them of their dignity.

Society believes that it is unacceptable to have a child that is out of wedlock. This has pushed the second perspective on forced abortion. The fact that society has come up with a norm that there has to be a family that will readily take care of the child when born, us something that has pushed most women that have become pregnant from premarital sex to look down upon themselves (Frame, 1999). This is a fact that has resulted in the perception that most women that become parents from premarital sex are not fit to be parents of any child and thus being coerced into giving up their children up for adoption despite the fact that they too can raise the children as their own (Swain, 2011). These words and norms that society has had engraved into their brains has led to the breaking up of prospectively peaceful and model homes for people and children. Furthermore, in claiming that single mothers could not provide for their children, the government and the people in Australia were generally but indirectly claiming that these women did not have what it takes to be parents. Thus they too last dignity for themselves as parents as well (Ford, 2013).

1950s, 1960s and 1970s were the times when life was cheapest and that the minds of people were geared towards a particular thought and were not ready to question them for being’ old school.’ The activities that were carried out during these years were those that looked down upon the people that had managed to get pregnant from the men that they had in their lives.  These very thoughts that people had been brought up believing and holding dear to their hearts were the very same ones that would break these mothers. When a mother that was not married was identified by society, she was termed and labelled as an immoral person that the people would end up avoiding and looking down up as being people that were not acceptable in the society that was meant to be growing (Cuthbert & Quatly, 2012). The treatment that they were exposed to as far from dignified because the public could not dare to question the norms that they have brought up with but could only just look at the norms and judge based on what they would have seen as being regular. These actions would not only break the spirits of these mothers but as well make them to look down upon themselves and be treated without dignity. The norms are the pillars that led to the improper treatment that the women were exposed to.

In the study of the forced adoption that the mothers were being put through, a deeper understanding of the dignities that were being deprived from the women. To do so, a quadrant understanding of human dignity is employed. First there is the dignity that humans already have which is further split into two aspects: being human and the possession of one or more human capacities. Under being human the lady should be given the dignity that by being a human she has the right to still be able to give birth to a child despite the fact that she is not married or financially stable. The second is that although she has gone through with the act of having sex before she is married, she still has the capability of being a good mother. The second half of the quadrant is the fact that she has dignity that may be lost or acquired. This is further classified as being in a position whereby she has a sense of self-worth. These ladies in Australia were stripped of this dignity because the pride of being a mother was taken away from her because society did not see her fit to parent because she was pregnant before wedding. Finally is the moral or immoral aspect of the dignity quadrant. The mothers were deprived of their civic duties of ben loving mothers. It would have been better that if society looked down upon these mothers it still allowed them to raise their own children because this is what any mother would love to do.

Finally, dignity should not be viewed from one dimension but from multiple aspects. While human dignity is inherent, we are also called to realize our dignity from the way in which we lead our lives and thus the fact that dignity was being looked at from one scope, it deprived the mother of raising her child as her own ad looking at her life and the decisions that she has made and cause her to change her view of her actions, resulting in a different state of mind in future.

In conclusion, the acts of forced adoption were acts if indignity and were not things that had basis. The ladies were treated badly there is nothing that is more flimsy than an apology. These women would be better dignified if they are given information on the whereabouts of their children rather than an apology. Forced adoption was an act that should not have been in existence but the fact that it was carried out for more than 30 years, these mothers need to be treated well, despite the fact that nothing can undo the mental, psychological and maternal pain that they endured (Brugger & Kristen, 2013).


Brugger, W., & Kirste, S. (2013). Human dignity as a foundation of law (1st ed.). Stuttgart (Franz Steiner Verlag).

Cuthbert, D., & Quartly, M. (2012). “Forced Adoption” in the Australian Story of National Regret and Apology*. Australian Journal Of Politics & History, 58(1), 82–96.

Ford, D. (2013). Australia apologizes for forced adoptions. CNN. Retrieved 1 June 2014, from

Frame, T. (1999). Binding ties (1st ed.). Sydney: Hale and Iremonger.

Josephs, I. (2008). Forced Adoption (1st ed.).

Kateb, G. (2011). Human dignity (1st ed.). Cambridge, Mass.: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.

Marshall, A., & McDonald, M. (2001). The many-sided triangle (1st ed.). Carlton, Vic.: Melbourne University Press.

Quartly, M., Swain, S., & Cuthbert, D. (2013). The market in babies (1st ed.). Clayton, Vic.: Monash University Publishing.

Spark, C., & Cuthbert, D. (2009). Other people’s children (1st ed.). North Melbourne: Australian Scholarly Pub.

Swain, S. (2011). Adoption, Secrecy and the Spectre of the True Mother in Twentieth-Century Australia. Australian Feminist Studies, 26(68), 193—205.

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Sexual Harassment Research Paper

Sexual Harassment
Sexual Harassment

Sexual Harassment

The paper should include the following:
Cover Page / presentation
Brief Summary (Paragraphs 1 and 2)
Statement of the issue / problem (Paragraph 3)
Viewpoint author (Paragraph 4)
Supporting arguments (paragraph 5)
Models and Theories (Paragraph 6)
Conclusion (Paragraph 7)
Personal Reaction (Paragraphs 8 and 9)
Implications of the study

The EEOC has defined sexual harassment in its guidelines as:
Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:
· Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment, or
· Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as a basis for employment decisions affecting such individual, or
· Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.

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White privilege and black disenfranchisement

White privilege and black disenfranchisement
White privilege and black disenfranchisement

What kind of interventions (changes) can be made in policing to stop the ongoing reproduction of white privilege and black disenfranchisement?

We understand that the reproduction of white social supremacy, (which is the disparate subordination of people of color compared to whites,) is also perpetuated by other institutions like education systems, financial systems, real estate markets, and the family. However, we are asking you to focus on policing.

Grading rubric (what you will be graded on)

Directly answering the question;

Demonstrate an understanding of the readings;

Using your own scholarly sources retrieved from the electronic library;

Proper length and format (a page means approximately 250 words, double-spaced, in 12 point Courier or Times Roman font, with one inch margins all around);

Accuracy of spelling and grammar (use spell-check and then proofread a printed draft of your paper for spelling, grammar and structural problems);

Use of properly cited quotations or references when referring to the book, articles or other reading material;

Name at the top of the first page (there is no need for a title page, a cover or a folder).

HELPFUL POINT: In a scholarly essay, if you quote from the book, or from some other source, you should include the citations in the essay.

It could appear as follows: Most “racial and ethnic minorities in the United States live in California, Texas, New York, Florida and Illinois” (Walker, Spohn and DeLone, 2014, p. 14). or According to Walker, Spohn and DeLone (2015, p. 14) most “racial and ethnic minorities in the United States live in California, Texas, New York, Florida and Illinois.”

If you don’t use a direct quotation, just their idea which you put in your own words, then you don’t need the page number, just the author and date. At the end of the essay you should list the references or bibliographic sources that you cited.

Each listing should include the author(s), date, title, source or publisher and place of publication. For example: MacIntosh, P. (1998). White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack.

In P. Rothenberg (Ed.), Race, Class and Gender in the United States: an Integrated Study (pp. 165-169). New York: St. Martin’s Press. Tyler, T. (2015).

Policing in Black and White: Ethnic Group Differences in Trust and Confidence in the Police. Police Quarterly, 8(3)322-342. 1.

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