Qantas Expert Statement

Public Statement Regarding Deportations to Danger

The position of airlines in respect of participation in forced deportations to danger is clear.

Under the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, the corporate responsibility to respect human rights means taking measures to avoid causing or contributing to adverse human rights impacts. This applies regardless of the size or structure of the business, and over and above local laws.

To discharge their responsibility, airlines should not participate in deportations where there is evidence that the fundamental human rights to an adequate legal process have been denied, as well as where there is a real risk of serious, irreparable harm to an individual.

Relevant international legal and human rights standards in relation to the deportation of asylum seekers include the Refugee Convention, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the Convention against Torture and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Given the inadequacy of Australian law and policy in upholding these standards, airlines should engage a heightened due diligence process in order to determine the potential for contribution to adverse human rights impacts before conducting any deportations as a provider of services to the Australian government.

Contribution to human rights abuses and failure to discharge their international obligations can do damage to a company’s reputation, undermine its social licence to operate, and pose material risks to a company’s financial interests.

 

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Media about the Stop Deportations to Danger campaign: Rapper MIA urges Australian airlines to refuse forced deportations
Arts stars join airline deportations push |  Aussie Rock Royalty Slams Qantas’ Refugee Deal As ‘Publicly Toxic’ |  Qantas, Virgin targeted over role in refugee repatriation |  Qantas and Virgin pressured to refuse to take part in removal of asylum seekers |   Australian airlines under pressure not to comply with deportation orders | Airlines in Australia face increasing pressure over refugees | Qantas faces shareholder rebellion over role in forced deportations Qantas upholds role in forced deportations of refugees | LGBTI Australians Back Campaign to Stop Qantas Deporting Refugees and more …

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Signatories

Behrouz Boochani, Kurdish journalist, human rights defender, poet and film producer who has been detained on Manus Island since 2013

Aamer Rahman, comedian, writer
Abdul Hekmat, freelance journalist and writer
Alana Hunt, artist
Alex Kelly, film maker
Dr Alice de Jonge, Senior Lecturer, Monash Business School
Alison Croggon, writer and critic
Emeritus Professor Alison Mackinnon, AM, University of South Australia
Ana Kokkinos, film and television director and screenwriter
Andrew Bovell, writer for theatre, film and television
Andrew Bradley (Quro), musician, artist
Anita Heiss, author, poet, satirist, social commentator
Anna Krien, journalist, essayist, fiction writer and poet
Assoc. Professor Anne Brown, peace worker and scholar
Anthea Vogl, National Convener, Academics for Refugees
Antony Loewenstein, independent journalist, author and film-maker
Angela Smith, deportation researcher
Aran Mylvaganam, Tamil Refugee Council
Archie Law, Chair, Sydney Peace Foundation
Asher Wolf, journalist, human rights defender
Ben Oquist, Executive Director, The Australia Institute
BenjaminLaw, author, broadcaster and TV screenwriter
Brendan Doyle, Secretary, Blue Mountains Refugee Support Group
Professor Brigitta Olubas, School of the Arts and Media, UNSW
Bryce Taylor, founder MIND
Brynn O’Brien, Executive Director Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility, member of the Multi-Stakeholder Advisory Group on Implementation of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights
Carolina Gottardo, Director, Jesuit Refugee Service Australia
Carrillo Gantner AO, Chairman, Sidney Myer Fund
Chris Nash, Professor of Journalism (Adjunct), School of Media, Film and Journalism, Faculty of Arts, Monash University
Christine Milne, Global Greens Ambassador and former Leader of the Australian Greens
Christos Tsiolkas, author, playwright, essayist and screen writer
Christopher Gordon, composer, Deputy Mayor of the City of Ryde
Dr Chrisoula Lionis, writer, curator, The University of Manchester
Claire Mallinson, National Director, Amnesty International Australia
Claire Palmer, barrister
Craig Foster, football broadcaster
Delia Falconer, author and 2018 winner of the Walkley-Pascall prize for Arts criticism
Dennis Altman AM FASSA, Ambassador Human Rights Law Centre, Patron, Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives and Gay and Lesbian Foundation of Australia
Professor Denise Bradley AC
Debbie Stothard, Secretary General and Coordinator, International Federation for Human Rights
Diana Sayed, human rights lawyer
Drusilla Modjeska, writer
Elaine Pearson, Australia Director, Human Rights Watch
Dr Elise Klein (OAM), Senior Lecturer, Development Studies, School of Social and Political Sciences, University of Melbourne
Eugenia Lim, artist
Fiona Katauskas, cartoonist, illustrator
Frances Rush, CEO, Asylum Seekers Centre Sydney
Adjunct Professor George Newhouse, human rights lawyer, National Justice Project
Gail Jones, novelist and Professor of Literature
Glenn Osboldstone, Lawyers for Fores
Hannah Kent, writer
Hoda Afshar, visual artist
Holly Throsby, musician
Isabelle Reinecke, Executive Director; Founder, Grata Fund
James Bradley, novelist and critic
Janet Holmes à Court
Jennifer Robinson, Barrister, Doughty Street Chambers, London
Jessie Taylor, President, Liberty Victoria
Jiva Parthipan, artist
Lee Rhiannon, former Senator for NSW
John Butler, singer, songwriter, music producer
Josie Naughton, CEO and co-founder of Help Refugees
Judith Lucy, comedian and radio, television and film actress, author
Jacquie Widin, President, SEARCH Foundation
Dr Julia Dehm, lecturer, La Trobe Law School
Associate Professor Justine Nolan, Faculty of Law, University of New South Wales, member of the Multi-Stakeholder Advisory Group on Implementation of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights
Kate McCartney, writer, director, performer
Kate Lee, Executive Officer, Union Aid Abroad, APHEDA
Keren Adams, Director of Legal Advocacy, Human Rights Law Centre, member of the Multi-Stakeholder Advisory Group on Implementation of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights
Kon Karapanagiotidis OAM, CEO, Asylum Seekers’ Resource Centre
Lizzie O’Shea, lawyer and writer
Linda Jaivin, author and translator
Luke Fletcher, Executive Director, Jubilee Australia
Lyn Harrison, CEO, House of Welcome
Madeleine Bridgett, barrister and Co-Chair Business and Human Rights Sub-Committee, Australian Lawyers for Human Rights
Mahmoud Salameh, cartoonist, visual artist
Margaret Hughes Bennelong Friends of Refugees & Amnesty International Australia
Margaret Pomeranz AM, film critic, writer, producer and television personality
Margaret Throsby AM, ABC broadcaster
Marieke Hardy, writer, broadcaster, television producer
Mark Seymour, rock legend
Melissa Parke, former federal member for Fremantle and Minister for International Development
MIA, Tamil hop hop queen
Michelle de Kretser, novelist
Mireille Juchau, novelist
Nayuka Gorrie, Kurnai/Gunai, Gunditjmara, Wiradjuri and Yorta Yorta writer
Nicky Minus, Cartoonist
Nigel Westlake, composer, performer and conductor
Neil Armfield AO, theatre, film, opera director
Nick Hanna, lawyer
Nur Shkembi, curator, writer
Dr Omid Tofighian, American University in Cairo, University of Sydney
Professor Paul Redmond AM, Faculty of Law, University of Technology Sydney, member of the Multi-Stakeholder Advisory Group on Implementation of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights
Paul Power, CEO, Refugee Council of Australia
Parisa Asvadi, refugee, scientist, activist
Peter O’Brien, Principal, O’Brien criminal and civil solicitors
Phil Glendenning AM, Director, Edmund Rice Centre & President, Refugee Council of Australia
Rawan Arraf, human rights lawyer
Rhyll McMaster, poet and author and great niece of founding CEO of Qantas Sir Fergus McMaster
Rihab Charida, filmaker
Robin de Crespigny, author, filmmaker
Robert Henderson, Economics, Finance and Banking Consultant and formerly chief economist (markets) with National Australia Bank
Rona Glynn-Mcdonald, Co-director YLab
Father Rod Bower, Rector, Anglican Parish of Gosford and Archdeacon of the Central Coast
Sara Saleh, GetUp! Board Director, activist, poet
Sarah Dale, Centre Director & Principal Solicitor, The Refugee Advice and Casework Service
Dr Safdar Ahmed, Artist and Director, Refugee Art Project
Sam Wallman, comics-journalist and contributing editor to Overland Literary Journal
Shankari Chandran, lawyer and writer
Shen Narayanasamy, Director No Business in Abuse and GetUp Human Rights Sophie Cunningham (AM), writer
Sophie Black, Head of Publishing, The Wheeler Centre
Stephen Jolly, Yarra Councillor
Srisha Sritharan, Australian Poetry Slam Sydney, NSW Champion
Dr Shelley Marshall, Senior Research Fellow, Graduate School of Business and Law, RMIT University
Simon Holmes à Court, Senior Advisor, Climate and Energy College, Melbourne University
Tessa Khan, international human rights lawyer
Professor Terri-ann White FAHA, director UWA Publishing
Thomas Keneally AO, Ambassador, Sydney Asylum Seeker Centre, novelist and playwright
Tim Winton, writer
Tim “Tigermoth” Paterson, musician, artist
Tim Lo Surdo, Democracy in Colour
Tim Hollo, Executive Director, The Green Institute
Tom Zubrycki, documentary filmmaker
Tony Wheeler AO, publishing entrepreneur, businessman and travel writer, co-founder of the Lonely Planet guidebook company
Van T Rudd, visual artist
Yassmin Abdel-Magied, author, engineer
Zeina Iaali, artist

Phil Vernon, Managing Director, Australian Ethical Investment
Raj Thamotheram, founder & chair of Preventable Surprises
Matt McAdam, Responsible Investment professional
Pablo Berrutti, Responsible Investment professional
Simon O’Connor, Responsible Investment professional
Simon Sheikh, Managing Director, Future Super
Terry Pinnell, Chair Ethical Advisers Co-op

Sharan Burrow, General Secretary, International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC)
Allen Hicks, National Secretary, Electrical Trades Union of Australia
American Federation of Teachers
Annie Butler, Federal Secretary, Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation
David Smith, National Secretary, Australian Services Union
Graham Smith, Federal Secretary, Australasian Meat Industry Employees Union
Grant Phillips, Secretary, Newcastle & Northern branch, Australasian Meat Industry Employees Union
Jeanne Rea, National President, National Tertiary Education Union
John Dixon, General Secretary, NSW Teachers Federation
Jo-anne Schofield, National Secretary, United Voice
Josh Cullinan, Secretary, Retail and Fast Food Workers Union
Luke Hilakari, Secretary, Victorian Trades Hall Council
Meredith Hammat, Secretary, UnionsWA
Michele O’Neill, President, Australian Council of Trade Unions
Michael Thompson, NSW State Secretary, National Tertiary Education Union
Mick Nairn, President, Fire Brigade Employees’ Union
Michael O’Connor, National Secretary, Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining and Energy Union
Natalie Lang, Branch Secretary, Australian Services Union, NSW and ACT Services Branch
Paddy Crumlin, National Secretary, Maritime Union of Australia
Paul Bastian, National Secretary, Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union
Sam Huggard, Secretary, New Zealand Council of Trade Unions
Susan Hopgood, Federal Secretary, Australian Education Union
Tim Kennedy, National Secretary, National Union of Workers

 

 

Human rights experts, business experts, investors, academics and union leaders are welcome to sign this open letter. Please email katie@accr.org.au.