FREEDOM RIDE TO CANBERRA                                                                    


Action - Federal Parliament

Grandmothers Against Detention of refugee Children in their electorates are called on to do everything in their power in the next weeks to win the hearts and minds of the people and the politicians.  We must bring the children and families in intolerable conditions on Nauru to Australian community settings

News from the Freedom Ride to Canberra.

We went 300 of us on the Freedom Ride and Day of Action in Canberra March 15th 16th and 17th We told our elected representatives that we would NOT stand by and allow the detention of babies, children, and their families.

WE said loudly and clearly that we would NOT stand by and watch 267 asylum-seekers in Australia be returned to Nauru

How did we do it?

We came from Melbourne and Sydney regional NSW and Victoria and from Tasmania and the Northern Territory

Buses and cars travelled up the Hume Highway from Federation Square in Melbourne, linking at Violet Town with participants from Bendigo and Ballarat – on to Wangaratta  and a walk to independent Cathy McGowan’s office to encourage her support for the refugees.  With cars festooned with purple, we continued through Gundagai to meet up in Canberra with our colleagues from Sydney, regional NSW, the Northern Territory and Tasmania.

DAY OF ACTION in Canberra on Wednesday 16th March  began with a cavalcade of cars and buses driving to Parliament House  grounds at 8.30am to a stirring rally. Surrounded by 1000 children-shaped cut outs, and at many meetings with parliamentarians throughout the day, grandmothers put their case clearly and vehemently for justice and compassion.  Speakers at the rally, Dr Gwenda Davey and Dr Anne Mijch from Grandmothers , Sarah Hanson Young from the Greens Melissa Parke from the Australian Labor Party and independent Andrew Wilkie all  joined with us in the call to: Free the Children from Detention.

And at the end of the day our voices were heard loudly in the foyer of Parliament House singing: We Shall Overcome – We shall Free the Children.  When we did that, we knew Grandmothers are brave, and we sang and danced some more right outside Parliament House.


Walking in Melbourne to Free the Children


The grandmothers preparing for the big launch at St Paul's on 6 September.

Image courtesy Australian Human Rights Commission