May 11, 2013
Women and children have begun arriving at Curtin Detention Centre in Western Australia’s Kimberley region for the first time in more than a decade.
A total of 138 asylum seekers have been transferred from Christmas Island to Curtin this week.
The first group of 74 people arrived on Wednesday and another group of 69 arrived yesterday.
There are a total of 49 families from Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
A Department of Immigration spokesman says each family has its own donga and bathroom and is separated from single men also held at the facility.
Curtin was closed by the Howard government after protests by detainees and reports of self harm.
It was re-opened to single men only in 2010 but this week the Immigration Minister announced plans for family groups to be moved back into the facility.
The department says paediatric staff, playgrounds, a library and extra shade areas will help make the centre more child-friendly.