#LGBT shelters
#Rainbow railroad
22 June 2019

I want info about shelters for LGBT people in Australia

Hello. Sorry for this question. Im from Russia, and i wanna know about the shelter for lgbt people in Australia? And how can i prove discrimination.I would be appriciate for this information

Elizabeth Parenteau

Hello. Sorry for this question. Im from Russia, and i wanna know about the shelter for lgbt people in Australia? And how can i prove discrimination.I would be appriciate for this information
Hello Michelle,
Thank you for taking the time to reach us to AlterHéros. I will do my best to answer your question and support you with what your request. If I understand correctly, you are asking yourself a few questions about the support you might be able to receive regarding the discrimination you are currently living in Russia.
First of all, I’m really sorry to hear that you’re victim of discrimination. I know that a lot of information is currently blocked for you and that makes it difficult to access services and find some support. Please know that we are here for you and you can send us your questions. In your message, you bring up the possibility of going to Australia and prove that you are victim of discrimination based on how you identify yourself in your country. While not a lot of information is available online and a lot of websites are blocked in Russia, I will do my best to inform you on what I was able to find:
In order to access protection, asylum seekers are required to be assessed to determine their status as a refugee. The process provides recognition of an individual’s status as a refugee, and allows for the entitlements and rights afforded to this refugee status. In Australia, obtaining refugee status provides the avenue for the issuing of a protection visa.
The majority of people who are provided protection by Australia are processed through the Humanitarian Program and its respective onshore and offshore programs. Those who arrive in Australia without a valid visa follow one of a number of processes depending on when they arrived.
The offshore program processes people who have been given refugee status by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and people who have been sponsored by Australian citizens or permanent residents or Australian-based community organisations. The onshore program processes people who apply once they are in Australia.
Different processes are followed for people who arrive in Australia with a valid visa and people who arrive without a valid visa.
People who arrive in Australia with a valid visa, whether it be a tourist or working visa, can submit a written application for refugee status with the Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection. The application is then assessed by an officer of the department to establish whether the asylum seeker is entitled to protection. If the application is accepted, the person is granted a permanent protection visa. If the application is rejected the person can apply to have the decision reviewed by the Refugee Review Tribunal.
If an application for refugee status is rejected, the asylum seeker has the option to lodge an application for a review of this decision with the Refugee Review Tribunal (RRT). This is in circumstances where there has either been a refusal to grant a protection visa or cancellation of a protection visa. The RRT is an independent government statutory body with its members appointed by the Governor-General. The RRT reviews decisions made by officers of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. RRT members review the department’s primary decisions, applying the same criteria. The RRT is a merits review body which makes decisions within the same legislative framework as the primary decision maker, in this case the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. If the RRT is unable to make a decision favourable to the applicant asylum seeker on the written evidence available, it must give the applicant the opportunity for a hearing. A fee must be paid by the applicant if the RRT affirms the original refusal decision. There are two possible outcomes of the review: the RRT overturns the original decision and grants refugee status or the RRT upholds the original decision. If the RRT upholds the original decision, the asylum seeker can apply to the Federal Circuit Court of Australia for judicial review of the RRT’s decision to assess whether the RRT made a jurisdictional error. The Minister for Immigration and Border Protection has powers under the Migration Act to substitute a decision made by the RRT with a decision that is more favourable to the applicant. The minister has the power to make decisions on individual cases, if all other avenues of review and appeal have been exhausted. In this case, an asylum seeker may seek the personal intervention of the Minister for Immigration. The minister may change the decision of a tribunal where it is in the public interest to do so. The minister rarely intervenes.
People who arrive in Australia without authorization or a valid visa have usually come by boat and are deemed by the government to be Illegal Maritime Arrivals (IMAs). They are subject to different processes to people who arrive with valid visas and are eligible for different visas and support. People who arrive on or after 13 August 2012 without a valid visa are prevented, by legislation, from applying for a visa until the Department of Immigration and Border Protection is ready to process their application. They are eligible for a Temporary Protection visa (TVP) or a Safe Haven Enterprise visa (SHEV). They are not eligible for a permanent Protection visa. Any valid visa application for permanent protection lodged before 15 December 2014 by a person who is regarded as an “illegal or unauthorized arrival”, will be taken to be an application for a temporary protection visa. For those who are detained in offshore processing centres, the status determination process is guided by local law in Papua New Guinea or Nauru.
The Immigration Advice and Application Assistance Scheme is available to support people to apply for protection. Under the scheme registered migration agents assist eligible applicants who have arrived lawfully in Australia and are considered ‘disadvantaged’ against a range of criteria. From 31 March 2014, the Australian Government has made this scheme unavailable to people who arrived without authorization or a valid visa. Instead of legal assistance, asylum seekers are able to access online information and resources about the application and assessment process.
The ‘enhanced screening process’ is a brief interview, undertaken by Department of Immigration and Border Protection officials, and determines whether a person is either ‘screened in’ and able to progress to apply for refugee status, or ‘screened out’, and returned to where they have come from.
I’m not sure if you’ll have access to this website, but it provides more information about the screening process: https://www.humanrights.gov.au/our-work/asylum-seekers-and-refugees/publications/tell-me-about-enhanced-screening-process
Australia’s non-refoulement obligations prohibit the removal of anyone from Australia to a country where they are in danger of death, torture or other mistreatment, including arbitrary detention. Under the enhanced screening process an individual is interviewed by two officers from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC).
If you do decide to visit Australia, I would recommend choosing a city like Sydney or Melbourne since they offer a good variety of services for the LGBT communities. If I am not answering your question correctly or if you would be interested in having more information about the options available in other countries like Canada, please don’t hesitate to let me know.
Some international LGBT organizations such as the Rainbow railroad (www.rainbowrailroad.com) could also probably get you in contact with people that could help you explore your options more deeply. I hope this short answer will help you look into different options for you.
We thank you for your trust and please don’t hesitate to send us a message if you feel the need to!
Elizabeth, for AlterHéros