Lately we’ve heard a lot about ‘supposed’ Australian values from Malcolm Turnbull and Peter Dutton. Theirs is not a message of tolerance and multiculturalism but a deliberate incitement to fear people with different customs, different skin colour, different religions -who already live here or who seek safety in Australia. As well, Peter Dutton demonises refugees by implying they are paedophiles.
As an alternative to Turnbull’s Australian values, Grandmothers propose Grandmothers’ Values. We taught these values to our own children and our grandkids. Let me share a few with you:
Respect Human Rights, the value of caring and compassion for the vulnerable.
Respect for all people, regardless of where they came from.
It’s never OK to bully and dehumanise others.
Every child and every person has the right to live in safety free of fear, and the right to seek asylum.
We teach our grandkids to always tell the truth, not to lie.
It’s not OK for our kids, our grandkids, or anyone to accept such behaviour. Grandmothers are calling it out right now, today, that lying for political advantage cannot be tolerated. These camps must be closed and refugees brought here. We demand that this systematic abuse in our name must end.
As Grandmothers and Friends, we will not stop until there is freedom and safety for all refugee children held by or on behalf of the Australian government.