Leading civil society organisations working with people who have been detained in Australia’s immigration detention system have raised concerns over Australia’s failure to meet the deadline for implementing the Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (OPCAT).
The groups, which include the Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC), warn that the failure to meet the deadline has serious implications for people detained by Australia in its immigration detention system.
Australia’s obligations under OPCAT require a comprehensive and effective oversight mechanism to protect people in detention. Without that oversight in place, there is a continued risk of breaches of human rights in detention settings across Australia, including within Commonwealth-run immigration detention facilities.
The organisations have written to the Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs and the Minister for Home Affairs with seven broad recommendations to assist Australia to meet its obligations under OPCAT.