End the suffering

Dear Prime Minister,

Sr Jane Keogh has been working with and for refugees in Australia for 15 years. She is currently visiting Manus Island. She wrote this message today:

Powerless and outraged on Manus. Find there is a mentally ill refugee walking the street with no clothes, sobbing uncontrollably on phone to a friend who is not allowed to visit and try to help him at the Transit Centre. Response mid Saturday- see case officer on Monday! Said, who will take responsibility if he suicides or harms someone before Monday. Given an email of ABF Lombrum to try, and told try going to gate and see if someone will let you in. We are going there now.
Why are people so ill kept in a place where there are no mental health fascilities?
This happened while we were on the way to the hospital to try and get something to stop ongoing months of sharp toothache for two who can’t touch their teeth without sharp unbearable pain. Why do we imprison people with normal teeth in a place with no dental service over years?
Yesterday some success finding private optometrist facilities for a refugee who has serious eye problems. In POM if you find a donor this is possible.
Thursday afternoon I arrived and found in POM a man with such severe back problems he can’t stand or sit and needs help to get to the toilet. Then another who already had operations but cannot walk without pain in his kidneys. He may lose a kidney. Another who has the bacterial stomach infection so many have here but whose condition is so serious he faints and cannot move around for long. Another who had surgery on his arm and since the operation he has no use of his arm and has no trust in second surgery now suggested. Others with huge painful cysts on the head and no improvement after a year of treatment here. Another man with no memory or concentration taken advantage of, disturbed one minute and laughing happily like a carefree child the next. Not enough room on facebook to write about just the health problems I’ve accidentally run into by my second day with refugees in PNG. I’m scared to meet another refugee because I realise now the depth of the health deprivation. Not enough space to highlight the care and support these men give to each other,
Resilient, brave men laughing now at Dutton”s stupidity and offering a prize to the first person to find Armani here among the refugee wardrobes.
— Sr Jane Keogh

End the suffering.