Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Nose hairs neat and tidy

Presumably to encourage asylum seekers to make productive use of time and divert their attention from life in detention, immigration detainees are offered points for participating in constructive activities such as sport and self-betterment classes. The accrued points can be exchanged for various goodies such as "battery-operated grooming gadgets, cigarettes, phone cards, snacks and confectionery". So the federal government is rewarding good behaviour with fattening junk food and deadly tobacco products. WTF?

And the most popular battery-operated gadget is not the iPod:
The Department of Immigration and Citizenship this week confirmed that the Christmas Island centre had recently received a bulk delivery of taxpayer-funded nose-hair trimmers.

The department refused to say how much they cost, but sources told The Sunday Times the figure was about $7000.
Again I ask, WTF?

Regardless, the rewards don't seem to be working:
A group of asylum seekers on Christmas Island has gone on hunger strike as other detainees continue a rooftop protest at the island's main detention centre.

An unspecified number of detainees at the island's lower-security Phosphate Hill facility had advised they were engaging in "voluntary starvation'', an Immigration Department spokesman told AAP.
Oh well, if they do voluntarily starve to death they will die with well-groomed nostrils.


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