Palm Sunday Walk for Justice & Freedom for Refugees – Shared statement


March 20, 2023

The Uniting Church of Australia, Synod of Victoria and Tasmania and Uniting Vic.Tas stand together in solidarity with refugees, people seeking asylum and their supporters across Australia to call out the injustices of Australia’s current immigration policies. 

The Uniting Church of Victoria and Tasmania and Uniting Vic.Tas, its community services organisation, provide care and support to people seeking asylum; treating them as equals and defending them against oppression and persecution. We support the creation of fair and efficient asylum processes underpinned by international human rights principles.  

We have a long history of engagement with newly-arrived people and systemic advocacy for better treatment of refugees and people seeking asylum. Our services assist many people seeking asylum in our community, some of whom have been waiting for many years for their applications to be resolved. Whilst we welcome the Australian Government’s recent granting of permanent settlement to refugees on Temporary Protection Visas and Safe Haven Enterprise Visas who arrived prior to 2014, we firmly believe that ALL refugees deserve permanent visas and access to family reunion.   

This Palm Sunday (2 April 2023), we re-affirm our commitment to people who have been forced to flee war, violence and persecution. We recognise their courage, resilience and inner-strength. 

Starting in the 1980s, churches across Australia have joined together on Palm Sunday in capital cities across the country to march together for peace. This rally has gone on to become an annual ecumenical event that draws people from many faith and non-faith backgrounds to march together to show support for public policy issues that are of importance to them.  

As part of this year’s Walk for Justice for Refugees, we’re calling on the Australian Government to immediately address a number of issues which we believe are crucial to improving the lives of refugees and asylum seekers. In Melbourne, the march will start at 2.30 pm at the State Library of Victoria, 328 Swanston Street, Melbourne.  


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