A group of more than 30 protesters called for better treatment of refugees at a lunchtime rally in the Hargreaves Mall on Thursday.
The Bendigo protest was part of a national day of action on the fifth anniversary of the re-opening of Nauru and the opening of the Manus Island detention centres.
The protesters were made up of Rural Australians for Refugees (RAR) Bendigo, Amnesty and Grandmothers Against the Detention of Refugee Children.
RAR Bendigo also delivered a letter to Senator Bridget McKenzie and Federal Member for Bendigo Lisa Chesters urging them to support the Refugee Protection Bill, which seeks to safeguard refugee rights.
The Bill calls for a sustainable and equitable response to the protection and processing of people seeking asylum and refugees in the Asia Pacific region.
It also seeks to ensure family unity and childrens’ interests are at the heart of decisions made under the Act.
“We are seeking a humane approach to the treatment of refugees,” Melissa Abel, secretary of RAR Bendigo, said at the rally.