The Australian Psychological Society (APS) welcomes the long-awaited release of the Australian Human Rights Commission’s report, The Forgotten Children, from its Inquiry into Children in Detention, and looks forward to the Government’s response.
The APS calls for all children in immigration detention to be released immediately, including those on Nauru, which the report makes clear is a particularly harmful environment.
APS President Professor Mike Kyrios says, “The report makes for distressing reading and catalogues the wide variety of psychological harms detention causes children, as well their parents. Detention is no place for children."
“Psychologists will be extremely concerned at the report’s findings, in particular that 34 % of children in detention centres had mental health disorders of sufficient seriousness that if they were living in the Australian community they would require treatment. Less than 2% of children in the Australian community have such high levels of mental ill-health,” he says.
The APS supports the Commission’s recommendation that children currently or previously detained at any time since 1992 have access to government-funded mental health support. This recognises the significant and ongoing adverse mental health consequences of detention.
Read more here: http://www.psychology.org.au/news/media_releases2015/12Feb/ Media Release, Feb 12, 2015.