Today representatives of AAN presented the Say No to Racial Politics petition to Mr Rick Brown, Senior Advisor to Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews. Jill Sergeant (AAN Treasurer) and Nicole Cunningham, (ordinary committee member), delivered a strong call for leadership by the minister and from all politicians in opposing racism.
View the photos of the petition presentation on our Moblog.
There was some discussion of the impact of racism on our communities and Mr Brown put forward the Coalition’s view on the refugee intake policy. Read the Minister’s Statement on the Refugee and Humanitarian Intake 2007 – 2008.
Our delegation offered to act as a resource for the coalition on an ongoing basis, in respect to cross-cultural issues. Jill stated that as members of mixed families we are “at the cutting edge” in building cross-cultural relationships and have considerable expertise to offer.
Mr Brown agreed to present the petition and supporting documentation to the Minister, and to utilise AAN as a resource in future consultations.
We are very happy with the outcome because it was a great opportunity to start dialogue with the Coalition about issues that deeply affect and distress our communities.
The petition gathered 1,773 signatures from all around Australia and overseas, and many signatories added comments. These comments, as we pointed out to Mr Brown, are a valuable resource as they reflect a range of opinions and experiences from the Australian public.
Thanks once again to all who supported the petition! We are very pleased and honoured to have been able to present to the Ministry your strong pro-African statement against racism and stigmatisation.
We plan to provide more detail about the meeting shortly.
We will now start negotiating for a meeting to discuss these issues with the relevant Labor MP.