Disappointment in MITA decision

Hume City Council is disappointed that the $29 million Australian Government proposal to upgrade the Melbourne Immigration Transit Accommodation Centre (MITA) will commence.

Under the proposal, MITA, which is based on Camp Road in Broadmeadows, will detain high risk offenders, such as those who have had visas cancelled on serious character grounds.

Hume Mayor, Councillor Drew Jessop, said that although Council was disappointed by the decision, it would work with the Australian Government to ensure there were jobs for locals and would advocate for the site’s best outcome.

“In our submission to the Australian Government, Council made it clear that we have concerns around the expansion of services within MITA,” Cr Jessop said.

“We believe that the site would have been better used to invest in community services and facilities that support and strengthen Hume.
“Council is also of the firm view that the site would deliver far greater benefits to the community if it was used for economic development and employment opportunities, not detention of high-risk detainees, given its strategic position.
"However, in light of the decision, we will work with the Australian Government to ensure the site’s full potential is realised.
"We will also work with the Australian Government to ensure any additional employment opportunities that arise from the upgrade are made available to the local community in the first instance.
“Given the significant community interest in the site, we expect that the operators of MITA will work closely with local residents and groups to ensure they are fully consulted through the process.”
In February 2017, Council, along with other community representatives, responded to the Australian Government’s inquiry titled “Proposed Melbourne Immigration Transit Accommodation Project, Broadmeadows, Victoria”.
The full report can be accessed here.

Posted on 9:00 AM, 5 June 2017

Updated : 9:50 AM, 6 June 2017

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