Since 2001, the Border Crossing Observatory estimates 840 people have died between Australia and Indonesia, including the equivalent of eight kindergarten classes of children.
Policies of deterrence have become the “common sense” approach when it comes to what should be done about asylum seekers – both in terms of stopping the boats and in terms of saving lives.
The problem is that both these assumptions are largely unjustifiable based on the evidence.
Deterrence has not decreased deaths
Deterring irregular border crossings does not necessarily decrease border related deaths. Evidence suggests in some contexts deterrence can simply displace…