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The Montmorency Asylum Seekers Support Group (MASSG) aims to support people who have sought asylum in Australia and to defend and promote their right to do so. We do this by assisting individuals in our community, by contributing to organisations supporting asylum seekers (e.g ASRC), by working to raise awareness and compassion within our community, and by campaigning for change in government policies and practices.

To read our newsletters, click here.

To join our mailing list for news and notices of events, email massginfo@gmail.com.

Gillian Triggs is Speaking Up in Eltham!

ELTHAMbookshop, Montmorency Asylum Seekers Support Group (MASSG) & Social Justice Group, St Francis Xavier Parish, Montmorency

warmly invite you to hear

Gillian Triggs  SPEAKING UP

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When: Monday, November 19th ,  6.30pm – 8.00pm

Where: Clarke Auditorium, Eltham College of Education, 1660 Main Road, Eltham.

Entry: $55/Single; $65/couple – includes one signed copy of the book (RRP$45.00) OR one $40.00 gift voucher & refreshments.  Teenagers 12-18 year old free entry

10%of the sales will be donated to a MASSG project.

Prepaid early bookings essential: ph 9439 8700, visit ELTHAMbookshop, 970 Main Road Eltham or go to the Bookshop Events page.

 Gillian will be in conversation with historian Clare Wright, author of  the Stella Prize winner, The Forgotten Rebels of Eureka Street.

The Chocolate Lilies will sing Gillian’s book in on the night.

Professor Gillian Triggs served as President of the Australian Human Rights Commission from 2012 to 2017, advocating for the disempowered, the disenfranchised, the marginalised. She withstood relentless political pressure and media scrutiny as she defended the defenceless for five tumultuous years.  Her new book, Speaking Up, shares with readers the values that have guided her convictions and the causes she has championed.

— And she will not rest until Australia has a Bill of Rights.

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE FLYER AND SEND IT TO YOUR FRIENDS

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What’s happening locally?

FOOD DRIVE

A Food Drive is being conducted by MASSG.  Donations will go to the Foodbank at the Asylum Seekers Resource Centre  and can be delivered to

52 Looker Road, Montmorency, Thursday 1st November to Monday 19th November

or to MASSG’s Were Street stall in the park, Sat Nov 17th  9.30am to 2.30pm

Enquiries: Pam 9439 1853 or Jocelyn 9432 0416.

Thank you for your compassion in action!

Click here for the flyer about our food drive Please download it and send it to your friends.

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Current issues

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Kids off Nauru

As the pressure mounts on the Australian government to resolve the humanitarian crisis of offshore detention, a coalition of NGOs and charities is driving a desperate campaign to get the endangered children off Nauru.  On the KidsoffNauru site they have set up a resource to help concerned citizens find and phone their MP. It provides access to the contact details for your MP and hints about what to say and how to answer objections. Read the statements coming from doctors, churches, international bodies – view the list of over 200 organisations (including MASSG) supporting the campaign – and give just five minutes to phone your MP! Then send this message on to your friends.

Every day brings another story of a child selfharming and a family in despair – and of the shockingly hearltess  responses of Minister Dutton and stern rebukes of our courts. Read more in our current newsletter.

 Labor’s asylum seeker policy: make your voice heard!

The Federal ALP conference is delayed until December, and the Victorian State conference avoided even debating the issues. Mr. Shorten has indicated ‘no interest’ in revisiting boat turnbacks.  But the draft Labor policy now available improves Labor’s stance.  Read the draft policy here and a summary of the MASSG submission on Labor Draft Policy here. If you share our hopes for change in Labor policy you can send your message instantly to all Labor Senators and Members of Parliament, using the list we have compiled of their emails. Download our  –Labor parliamentarians email list 2017  – and paste it into the BCC field of your email. MASSG strongly believes the ‘bipartisan’ support for cruel policies to asylum seekers must end, and that Labor must confront the fact that its silence allows those policies to continue.

Cuts to STATUS RESOLUTION SUPPORT SERVICES (SRSS)

What is SRSS and why does it matter?  It was a regular payment to assist with basic living costs to asylum seekers in Australia, who are on a temporary visa, and waiting for a decision about their immigration status.  The payment is about 85% of Newstart – really low – but its removal could affect 13,299 people including 4,059 children between 0-17 years of age from 4th June. Information and call to action here.

Processing of the claims has blown out to 2020.  Those who can’t find work are effectively being starved out.  Help will be needed for food, housing, medical expenses, social inclusion and jobs. There is comprehensive information on the RAR Website and Refugee Council of Australia.

What can you do? Write or phone Malcolm Turnbull to stop these changes being rolled out. Sign the RCOA Petition – Aim –  5,000 signatures in 3 months

helpAsylum seeker students losing Centrelink benefits

An urgent appeal has been started to help a group of young Melbourne asylum seekers who have achieved tertiary places but lost all Centrelink support through the latest government move to deprive those on bridging visas of support. Read more here about the appeal and their  situation.  You can donate by direct bank transfer:  account name is “Youthplus Foundation”. BSB: 064786
Account: 523030100. Ref: LSP  –  to tag your donation to this fund.   For more information, contact Colin Long by email or ph. 0403920361.

Our story

In 2001 the Tampa tragedy hit the headlines, and the Australian population learned, for the first time, about the plight of asylum seekers attempting to enter our country by boat.   One morning in 2003 a small group of friends met for coffee and soon began discussing the latest news about asylum seekers. These kindly women were horrified that people could come here and go hungry in a land of plenty. They decided to meet monthly and collect non-perishable food which would be given to the Asylum Seekers’ Resource Centre.  And so the Montmorency Asylum Seekers’ Support Group was born.

Fourteen years later it still exists……. think for a moment about that. Fourteen years! Over those 14 years, Australia built an indelible reputation for cruelty, selfish rejection of those in need and shameful defiance of international condemnation. And for 14 years the Montmorency Asylum Seekers’ Support Group has spoken out against those policies, lobbied those who make them and helped those hurt by them.

Get involved!

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