Aboriginal workers to protest intervention

October 9, 2010
Photo: Mark Kilpatrick

WAVE HILL — Aboriginal workers in the community of Kalkaringi — site of the famous 1966 Gurindji walk-off — will stage a protest on October 20 against what they call “a return to the ration days”.

Under the NT intervention introduced in 2007, Aboriginal workers on Community Development Employment Projects have been pushed onto work-for-the-dole. They now work for welfare payments only, half of which they receive on a Basics Card that can only be spent on food, clothing and medical supplies.

John Lehman, a Gurindji man organising the protest, told CAAMA Radio on October 4: “It's devastating our lives, it's not doing any good. The government's saying that it's making things better but it hasn’t —the intervention has had no effect whatsoever; it's just made things worse.

“I’m from Kalkaringi. and everyone knows about the Wave Hill walk-off from long ago. Now for the old people, things are coming back again. Those laws. Old people think ‘we're gonna fight again’.”

To support the demonstration, or for more information, contact John on 0457 286 387.

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