Asylum in Australia

There are approximately 30,000 asylum-seekers affected by these measures, labelled by the Australian Government as the so-called ‘legacy caseload’. Negative political rhetoric and the resulting community stigmatisation of this group of asylum-seekers has also had a harmful impact on them.

People who seek international protection have endured traumatic experiences before arriving in Australia and their resilience is eroded by punitive measures they experience in Australia. Many asylum-seekers suffer from clinically diagnosable mental disorders including anxiety, depressive disorders and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

UNHCR Regional Representation in Canberra closely monitors this situation and works to promote respect for the international human rights of asylum-seekers in Australia.

Legal Representation

Mental Health and Legal Representation for Asylum-Seekers in the "Legacy Caseload"    Mary Anne Kenny, Nicholas Procter, Carol Grech (2016)

Legal Assistance for Asylum-Seekers                Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law (2015)

'Fast Track' Process

'Fast tracking' refugee status determination    Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law (2015)

'Fast tracking' statistics                                Refugee Council of Australia (2017)

Migration and Maritime Powers Legislation Amendment (Resolving the Asylum Legacy Caseload) Act 2014: What it means for Asylum-Seekers Refugee Council of Australia (2015)

The Migration and Maritime Powers Legislation Amendment (Resolving the Asylum Legacy Caseload) Bill 2014 Submission                 Refugee Advice and Casework Service (2014)

Mental Health

Managing and Understanding Psychological Issues Among Refugee Applicants: Guidelines for Best Practice                                          University of New South Wales (2013)

The Impact of Detention on the Health of Asylum Seekers: A Systematic Review                                Trine Filges, Edith Montgomery, Marianne Kastrup, Anne-Marie Klint Jørgensen (2015)

Guidelines on the Judicial Approach to Expert Medical Evidence International Association of Refugee Law Judges (1997)

Towards the Restoration of Individualized Assessment of Mental Health in Refugee Law Cecilia Bailliet (2009)

Part I—The mental health impacts of migration: the law and its effects Failing to understand: refugee determination and the traumatized applicant Zachary Steela, Naomi Frommerb and Derrick Silovec (2004)

Psychological research relating to Refugee Status Determination procedures