RISE eX-detainees wholeheartedly welcome the action taken by over 100 musicians who have divested from Australia’s abusive Refugee detention industry. RISE eX-detainees have been working with a group of Australian based musicians over the last three years via Eclipse, a musicians collective, to achieve this important solidarity pledge.

RISE strives to abolish mandatory detention of Asylum seekers in and outside Australia, whether it be one day, two days or more. We eX-detainees strive for self-determination where eX-detainees and detainees are in charge of the public discourse in which our community is addressed and talked about.

RISE Founder and eX-detainee, Ramesh Fernandez said while we commend all the musicians who signed the pledge, we also acknowledge that this is long overdue. Such solidarity actions help our eX-detainee community to get closer to our goal to abolish Refugee mandatory detention policies and shut down detention centres permanently. We must put pressure on all those organisations and individuals who benefit from the Refugee detention business. Our oppressed lives are not your capitalist pay walls”.

The musicians who have pledged to divest

  • Will not participate in any events that are sponsored by Refugee detention profiteers
  • Will not perform at any events that hire security companies who are part of the Refugee detention supply chain
  • Will not perform at any events or gigs sponsored by the Australian Department of Home Affairs or Department of Immigration

eX-detainees at RISE are aware of the fact that agreeing to the above pledge, will impact musicians financially – especially, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander musicians during this COVID-19 pandemic. By divesting from the detention industry during this difficult time, these musicians have shown meaningful solidarity towards the eX-detainee and detainee community in Australia and offshore. They have taken a stand to not be complicit in Refugee detention torture by the Australian government.

The way RISE operates, the eX-detainee and refugee movement isn’t just about speaking about the evils of border imperialism but also taking practical and effective action to abolish institutionalised abuse and torture of refugees seeking protection. It is a fact that money assigned to look after those in detention goes into the hands of private companies while our people are subjected to gross human rights violations. The current mandatory detention regime has been used to win elections since 1992 and our people have continuously been used as political pawns in this racist state. Since 1992, billions of dollars have been made from detention centres in Australia. Enough is Enough!

The detention divestment campaign is unique in that it is initiated, controlled and directed by eX-detainees – Get Involved http://riserefugee.org/topic/detention-divestment/

‘Nothing About Us Without Us’
eX-detainee Community
RISE: Refugee Survivors and eX-detainees