3 Feb 2014

Australian Human Rights Commission to probe detention of children

2:23 pm on 3 February 2014

The President of Australia's Human Rights Commission says she will lead an inquiry into the detention of children in Australia's asylum seeker processing centres, including those abroad.

Professor Gillian Triggs says the inquiry will investigate the impact of immigration detention on the health, well-being and development of the children in the camps.

She says many children have been denied the freedom of movement and are spending important developmental years living behind wire in highly stressful environments.

The inquiry will also measure progress since the commission's last investigation in 2004 which found that long periods of detention created a high risk of serious mental harm, and whether Australia is meeting its obligations under UN Convention on the rights of the child.

The Commission expects the inquiry to be completed by the end of the year.