The majority voted in favour of a motion, introduced by Senator Stirling Griff (SA) and amended by Senator Kim Carr (Vic). Although motions like these don't make any legal changes, they are politically influential as they represent the will of the Senate.
That the Senate—
(a) acknowledges that 10 December 2017 is Human Rights Day which represents the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Rights, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly which established the equal dignity and worth of every person;
(b) recognises that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights represents a milestone document in the history of human rights which proclaimed the inalienable rights that everyone is inherently entitled to as a human being, regardless of race, colour, religion, sex, language, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status;
(c) observes that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was drafted by representatives of diverse legal and cultural backgrounds from all regions of the world and sets out universal values and a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations;
(d) notes that:
(i) children, as well as adults, have human rights and children also have the right to special protection because of their vulnerability to exploitation and abuse,
(ii) December also commemorates Australia's ratification of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1990, and
(iii) Australia's ratification of the Convention on the Rights of the Child means that Australia has a duty to ensure that all children in its care enjoy the rights set out in the treaty;
(e) further notes that:
(i) it has been over three years since the publication of The Forgotten Children report. The report revealed that the prolonged, mandatory detention of asylum seeker children causes them significant mental and physical illness and developmental delays, and
(ii) refugee children should not be detained in offshore processing centres for prolonged periods and should be resettled in third countries as soon as possible; and
(f) calls on the Turnbull Government to immediately accept New Zealand's offer to resettle refugees from Manus Island and Nauru and begin negotiating appropriate conditions, similar to the United States refugee resettlement agreement, to ensure people smugglers do not exploit vulnerable people and eligible refugees, particularly women and children, are resettled in third countries as soon as possible.