“We are a nation made of ‘boat people’. I grew up right next door to Sydney’s the Endeavour Hostel in the 80s where playgrounds and open spaces prevailed not the barbed wire and barbed words of now. I was a ‘skip’ surrounded by the children of immigrants and refugees fleeing persecution from as far away as behind what was then called the ‘Iron Curtain’ or as close as East Timor. It made for brilliant conversations, great insights and some fantastic lunchtime swaps.
These days of course those very same childhood friends would instead be languishing in isolated, humid hell-holes and I would never have had the joy of off-loading my peanut butter or vegemite sandwiches for some far more fabulous prawn crackers! Our nation is so much the poorer for the way we treat our most vulnerable.” -Tammy Franks MLC