A small but scary and upsetting update to the baby Asha story – her lawyers have now sent statements to media, saying they literally do not know where Asha or her family are, nor can they get in contact with them.
#LetThemStay protestors felt as though they had received an (albeit small) victory yesterday, as it was announced that Asha would not be deported to Nauru, and would instead be in community detention in Australia.
Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital in Brisbane posted an update this morning saying that Asha had been discharged from their care. And now, her family lawyer, Daniel Webb, Director of Legal Advocacy at the Human Rights Law Centre says they have not even been informed of the family’s whereabouts and are “concerned:
“We have not been told where our client is currently located.
We have formally requested access to our client repeatedly over the last 3 days but that access has been denied. We remain concerned for the welfare of our client, and request that we be able to speak to the family immediately to ascertain their welfare, location and receive instructions.”
The legal group also included statements from Natasha Blucher, Family Advocate:
“I am very concerned for this family’s welfare. The usual process for community detention is the family is free to come and go, contact whomever they wish and try and lead a normal life. I am still being denied access to this family, and they have been unable to call me and other support people. I don’t understand why this is happening given the Minister’s commitment yesterday was that he would remove the family to community detention.”
as well as Shen Narayanasamy, who is the Human Rights Director for Getup!:
“Yesterday, Immigration Minister Dutton fronted the nation’s press and announced Baby Asha and family would be moved into the Australian community. The Minister was forced into this policy backflip as a result of the community outcry and clinical decision made by Lady Cilento Hospital that neither detention in Brisbane, nor detention in Nauru was a safe home for this family.
Baby Asha’s family were then moved from the hospital at 4am this morning to an undisclosed location. The family’s lawyers and advocates have all been denied contact with this family. Currently, we do not know where Baby Asha is, and remain concerned for the welfare of this family.”
We will keep you updated as we know more information. In the mean time, lets all keep Asha and her family in our hearts today.