Uniya Jesuit Social Justice Centre Uniya
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Location : Education : Refugees : Advocacy

Networking and tactics

There is a burgeoning number of organisations concerned about the human rights of Asylum Seekers. There are some principles and practical tactical advice for those who wish to engage in advocacy for asylum seekers and refugees:

  1. Endeavour to persuade and not coerce.
  2. Our greatest strength lies in projecting our values.
  3. There is great power in questions. Try and ask the right and potent question.
  4. To be credible we must understand the complexity of the situation.
  5. It is futile to engage in a destructive mode of public discourse.
  6. A regime of attack and counter-attack only reinforces the status quo.
  7. Do not ask refugees to relive their nightmares.
  8. Emphasise sameness rather than difference in work with refugees and asylum seekers.
  9. Use visuals in any communication.
  10. Break a complex message down and make it accessible.
  11. Give a clear and consistent message with basic facts.
  12. Recognise and affirm those politicians working for change.
  13. It is critically important to analyse the policies of opposing parties and to highlight the differences.
  14. Work positively with the incumbent party at both state and federal level and acknowledge - wherever possible - the positive.
  15. Offer solutions not just criticism.
  16. Do not assume that people who oppose you are racist.
  17. Ensure that the debate about asylum seekers does not stay solely in the realm of the law. It is also an ethical issue.

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