Peter Robson

Aboriginal leaders from Arnhem Land met with Prime Minister Kevin Rudd on July 23 and called for the restoration of the Racial Discrimination Act. The act was suspended in June 2007 to allow for the passing of the bi-partisan Northern Territory (NT) intervention legislation.
On June 21, Indigenous affairs minister Jenny Macklin announced that her government would begin to end funding for infrastructure to remote Northern Territory (NT) Aboriginal communities that she deemed were “economically unviable”. This is the Rudd Labor government’s first major attack on Aboriginal land rights since taking power.
In a blow to the Northern Territory intervention policy, the Australian Medical Association (AMA) announced on June 15 that it will pull out of recruiting medical staff for the program, which it argued the government was dramatically underfunding.
The minister for Indigenous affairs, Jenny Macklin, announced a review committee on June 6 for the federal intervention into Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory. The announcement came as the widely criticised intervention — often referred to as the "NT invasion" — approaches its 12-month anniversary on June 21. The terms of reference for the review are limited to assessing the intervention's progress and improving its implementation and "service delivery".
“The thought of our beautiful Camden accommodating to this religion is a disgrace … This Islamic school will change the town forever”, “Hayley”, a Camden resident, was quoted by the November 6 Sydney Morning Herald as saying in relation to an attempt to build an Islamic school in the far-outer Sydney suburb.
The federal government’s intervention into remote Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory has largely failed to produce significant improvements in health or housing, an NT health department employee told Green Left Weekly on May 29.
Only 35 of the 7500 Aboriginal children examined as part of the federal government’s Northern Territory “intervention” have been referred to child authorities for suspected abuse, according to figures released by the federal health and reported in the May 19 Brisbane Courier Mail.
The Residents’ Action Movement has been growing rapidly in the last month (with around 100-300 people joining per week) as a result of the popularity of their key campaign — to remove the 12.5% goods and services tax on food.
While Mount Isa welfare organisations are alarmed about not being able to provide for the large influx of Aboriginal people who have fled the federal government’s Northern Territory intervention, the government is looking to expand this racist bipartisan policy.
Aboriginal delegates to the 2020 summit, chaired by PM Kevin Rudd, expressed anger that it failed to agree on a treaty between Black and white Australia. They are also dismayed that there was no clear recommendation to form a new Indigenous representative body to oversee government policy.

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