St Anthony of Padua Catholic Church Toongabbie

The extraordinary support the government has provided gives a comforting safety net to some of us, but sadly not all of us. Indeed, the very people left out are some of the most vulnerable in our community – but we can all stand together so there’s #NoOneLeftBehind

Thousands of our brothers and sisters who are temporary visa holders, including people seeking asylum and protection, are suffering deeply and need our help.

The Diocese of Parramatta Social Justice Office as well as many other Catholics in our community call on the Federal and State governments to extend a vital safety net - financial support, Medicare, and adequate shelter - to everyone in need within the Australian community, regardless of their visa status, during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Click on this link https://www.change.org/nooneleftbehind to sign the petition and hear Niraj and his family’s story.

To keep you updated, Bishop Vincent and the Diocese of Parramatta has

  • Signed a joint statement of over 100 community groups to include all migrant workers in the JobKeeper program (attached) which ran in the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age newspapers on the 7th of April ahead of parliament sitting on the 8th of April.
  • Signed and helped promote a private letter to the Prime Minister from 43 Catholic Leaders calling for a release for people from detention and into safe shelter as well as the broadening of the safety net for all people seeking protection, including women at risk from domestic violence.
  • After a lack of response from the private letter we will make a public statement next week, seeking to generate media attention 
  • Signed an open letter from the Refugee Council of Australia to the Prime Minister which will be sent at the end of this week
    Promoted the above petition and is working with a national coalition to bring more attention to the #NoOneLeftBehind campaign

Pope Francis in his Easter Sunday message to members of social movements around the world said:

“I hope that this time of danger will free us from operating on automatic pilot, shake our sleepy consciences and allow a humanist and ecological conversion that puts an end to the idolatry of money and places human life and dignity at the centre. Our civilisation — so competitive, so individualistic, with its frenetic rhythms of production and consumption, its extravagant luxuries, its disproportionate profits for just a few — needs to downshift, take stock, and renew itself.

“You are the indispensable builders of this change that can no longer be put off. Moreover, when you testify that to change is possible, your voice is authoritative. You have known crises and hardships … that you manage to transform — with modesty, dignity, commitment, hard work and solidarity — into a promise of life for your families and your communities.”

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