Greens lock themselves in cage to protest refugees detained in Park Hotel


Four Greens MPs have locked themselves inside a cage outside the Park Hotel to protest the refugees being detained there.

Samantha Ratnam MLC, Ellen Sandell MP, Sam Hibbins MP and Dr Tim Read MP were all locked inside the Freedom Cage on Wednesday in solidarity with the 32 refugees indefinitely detained in the Hotel.

Since November 2019, these men have been detained cruelly and indefinitely in Melbourne, first at the Mantra Hotel in Preston and now at the Park Hotel in Carlton, right in the heart of our community.

Leader of the Victorian Greens, Samantha Ratnam, said it was inhumane to allow dozens of asylum seekers to be held in poor living conditions away from their families.

She added it was high-time the Victorian Premier advocated to the Prime Minister for their immediate release. 

During the last sitting week of Parliament, Premier Andrews shot down and dismissed the Greens when they asked if he would use his platform to advocate for the release of the 32 refugees.

The tragic reality is, until both the Liberal and Labor parties abandon their cruel, punitive policies of offshore detention and accept refugees, Australia will continue to cruelly lock up vulnerable people seeking asylum. 

Quotes attributable to Leader of the Victorian Greens, Samantha Ratnam MLC:   

“Dozens of refugees have been cruelly detained in Melbourne for years now and both our state and federal governments have done nothing about it.

“Today my Greens colleagues and I locked ourselves in the Freedom Cage in an act of solidarity and as a plea.

“We’re urging the Victorian Premier to advocate to the Prime Minister for the immediate release of the 32 men currently locked up in the Park Hotel.

“The inaction of our Premier and Prime Minister to date has been nothing short of inhumane.”

Four Greens MPs standing inside cage outside Park Hotel
Photo credit: Julian Meehan