Serco and G4S are peas from the same pod

In Australian political life, only the Greens are hammering away against the privatisation of detention centres:

Australia’s immigration detention system is failing, and this makes the need for transparency greater than ever, according to Senator Sarah Hanson-Young.

Senator Hanson-Young, Greens spokesperson on Immigration, says she is concerned at reports that immigration service provider SERCO may have sub-contracted unlicensed security guards in a number of detention facilities in the Northern Territory.

“Anyone who works in the immigration detention system should have appropriate training and knowledge to work in such a sensitive area, so we are extremely concerned at any evidence that standards are slipping – but there is a wider problem here,” Senator Hanson-Young said.

“From evidence at estimates hearings it is clear that there is no real public oversight of service providers like Serco. This is the critical problem with using private contractors to run a sensitive system like immigration detention.

“This also flies in the face of Labor’s commitment in 2007, when it promised to return the management of detention centres to public hands.”

We know the future and it’s Britain. Multinationals given extraordinary powers to treat refugees as numbers to be managed:

The UK Border Agency has launched its second investigation this month into allegations of mistreatment of a man being forcibly deported through Heathrow after being refused asylum.

José Gutiérrez, 37, from Colombia, needed hospital attention after G4S security guards escorted him on to a British Airways flight. He was subsequently removed from the plane before take-off.

His experience – on the evening of 6… October – came only a few days before Jimmy Mubenga, a 46-year-old Angolan refugee, collapsed and died after employees of the same private security firm put him on to another BA flight at Heathrow. Gutiérrez’s partner, Teresa Ramsey, contacted the Guardian after reading of Mubenga’s death.

Text and images ©2024 Antony Loewenstein. All rights reserved.

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