|February 12th, 2008||#1|
Australia's Aborigines: A Timeline
Published: February 12, 2008
A timeline of key dates and facts about Australia's Aborigines:
_ 1788 British settlers establish a penal colony in Sydney, leading to skirmishes between the colonialists and local Aboriginal clans. Aborigines are believed to have numbered about 750,000 at the time of settlement and to have inhabited Australia for up to 70,000 years.
_ 1789 The first cases of smallpox, brought by the settlers, are reported among Aborigines and kill hundreds.
_ 1791 Officials grant parcels of land around Sydney to convicts who have served their time, beginning years of dispossession of Aborigines that continues as white settlers disperse throughout Australia. Clashes between Aborigines and settlers lead to tens of thousands of deaths among Aborigines and hundreds of settler deaths.
_ Jan. 1, 1901 The Commonwealth of Australia is formed, but the constitution excludes Aborigines from the national census, leaving them to be considered "fauna."
_ 1910 State governments introduce policies to remove mixed-blood Aboriginal children from their families, arguing the children would be better off because the race now estimated at around 60,000 nationally was doomed to extinction.
_ 1937 Assimilation of mixed-blood Aborigines by force if necessary is adopted as official policy at a meeting of federal and state officials, while Aborigines living a "tribal life" are to stay on reserves.
_ 1967 In a landmark referendum, Australians vote overwhelmingly in favor of changing the constitution to count Aborigines in the census, effectively granting them voting rights and ending constitutional discrimination.
_ 1970 The last laws granting authorities wide powers to take Aboriginal children away from their families are abolished, though many Aborigines say statistics show the government is still more likely to take Aboriginal children into foster care than white children for reasons such as abuse.
_1976 The federal government passes legislation granting Aboriginal ownership to large parts of the Northern Territory, kicking off a new movement to reclaim traditional lands.
_1992 The highest court rules that Aborigines held a form of ownership to Australia before the settlers arrived, a landmark decision that results in legislative recognition of native title rights over some government-owned lands_ and years of acrimonious debate about the issue.
_1997 A national inquiry says policies removing Aboriginal children from their parents caused massive trauma to 100,000 children and their families, and recommends the "stolen generation" be compensated. Prime Minister John Howard refuses an official apology, but hundreds of thousands of Australians attend so-called "Sorry Day" events.
_ 2007 Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is elected, and promises a formal apology to those Aborigines taken from their families on behalf of the government. The apology is due in Parliament on Wednesday.
|February 12th, 2008||#2|
[Here's an email circulating in Australia in response to the government's official apology to abos (2/13/08). It contains many facts about human subsidies given aborigines.]
AUSTRALIAN APOLOGY TO THE ABORIGINAL POPULATION
We apologise for giving you doctors and free medical care, which allows you to survive and multiply so that you can demand apologies.
We apologise for helping you to read and teaching you the English language, thus opening up to you the entire European civilisation, thought and enterprise.
We feel that we must apologise for building hundreds of homes for you, which you have vandalised and destroyed.
We apologise for giving you law and order which has helped prevent you from slaughtering one another and using the unfortunate for food purposes.
We apologise for developing large farms and properties, which today feed you, where before, you had the benefits of living off the land and starving during droughts.
We apologise for providing you with warm clothing made of fabric to replace the animal skins you used before.
We apologise for building roads and railway tracks between cities and building cars so that you no longer have to walk over harsh terrain.
We apologise for paying off your vehicles when you fail to pay the instalments.
We apologise for giving you free travel anywhere, whenever.
We apologise for giving each and every member of your family $100.00 and free travel to attend an aboriginal funeral.
We apologise for not charging you rent on any lands when white people have to pay.
We apologise for giving you interest free loans.
We apologise for developing oil wells and minerals, including gold and diamonds which you never used and had no idea of their value.
We apologise for developing Ayers Rock and Kakadu, and handing them over to you so that you get all the money.
We apologise for allowing taxpayers money to be paid towards a daughters' wedding ($8,000.00 each daughter).
We apologise for giving you $1.7 billion per year for your 250,000 people, which is $48,000.00 per aboriginal man, woman and child.
We apologise for working hard to pay taxes that finance your welfare, medical care, education, etc to the tune of $1.2 billion each year.
We apologise for you having to approach the aboriginal affairs department to verify the above figures.
For the trouble you will have identifying the "uncle toms" in your own community who are getting richer and leaving some of you living in squalor and poverty. We do apologise.
We really do.
We are only too happy to take back all the above and return you to the paradise of the "outback", whenever you are ready.
|February 12th, 2008||#3|
Aboriginal crime in Australia
What is meant by the term, "Aboriginals are over-represented in jails"?
The journalists and PR experts working, at taxpayer expense, for the Aboriginal industry have created a number of terms best described as emotive propaganda. One such term is "Aboriginals are over-represented in jails"
You wouldn't think they would publicise such a fact. But the propaganda effect has turned a negative into a positive. The term has been picked up and used by the Aboriginal industry, judges and do-gooders to try and make us all feel guilty about jailing any Aboriginal, regardless of the crime.
There may be some validity to this term if Aboriginals received longer jail sentences than white offenders. But the reverse is the case. On average, Aboriginals receive 42% shorter jail terms than non-Aboriginals jailed for the same offence (read the article "Judges soft on Aboriginal criminals").
Why are Aboriginals "over-represented" in jails
Simply because they commit more crime. According to the University of WA crime research centre, while Aboriginals make up less than 3% of the population, they commit 20% of the violent crime in Western Australia.
The research centre also found that one in five assaults, one in three robberies, more than one in three homicides and about one in ten sexual offences are inter-racial. About 93% of those involve Aboriginal offenders and non-Aboriginal victims.
That is why Aboriginals are "over-represented" in the criminal justice system. No amount of posturing and emotional blackmail can change the facts.
The hidden victims of Aboriginal crime
While the judges and do-gooders protect Aboriginal criminals (mainly males) from justice, they help perpetuate violence against Aboriginal women and children
The judges and do-gooders should read the following statistics and then hang their heads in shame:
Up to 50 per cent of Aboriginal children are victims of family violence and child abuse
A survey carried out among 120 households in Adelaide found 90 per cent of the women and 84 per cent of the young girls had been raped at some stage of their lives.
In most States, more than 70 per cent of assaults on Aboriginal women are carried out by their husbands or boyfriends
Aboriginal women are 20 times more likely than non-Aboriginal women to be victims of violence
Source: The publication, Through Black Eyes, published by the Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care.
|February 12th, 2008||#4|
Judges soft on Aboriginal criminals
Judges sentence Aboriginals to 43% shorter jail terms than the rest of the population
If you are an Aboriginal felon then you can expect a jail term 42.8% shorter than a non- Aboriginal convicted for the same offence. The median aggregate sentence length for all offences for Aboriginals is 2 years, versus 3 years and 6 months for non-Aboriginals.
These startling figures, as shown in the table below, validate the public perception that judges are soft on Aboriginal criminals.
Scales of Injustice Offence (jail terms for non-Abo vs Abo)
Homicide 14 years 10 years
Assault 2 years 6 months 1 year 6 months
Sex offences 6 years 7 years
Other against person 3 years 3 months 3 years 3 months
Robbery 6 years 5 years 8 months
Break and enter 2 years 1 year 11 months
Fraud 1 year 8 months 2 years 6 months
Theft 1 year 1 year
Property damage 3 years 9 months
Justice procedures 9 months 9 months
Good order offences 4 months 14 months
Drug offences 4 years 6 months 2 years 3 months
Driving offences 6 months 7 months
Other traffic offences 6 months 8 months
Other offences 1 year 4 months 9 months
All Offences 3 years 6 months 2 years
|February 12th, 2008||#5|
The general consensus among scholars for the arrival of humans in Australia is placed at 40,000 to 50,000 years ago with a possible range of up to 70,000 years ago though not as widely supported. The earliest human remains found to date are that of Mungo Man which have been dated at about 40,000 years old.
At the time of first European contact, it has been estimated the absolute minimum pre-1788 population was 315,000, while recent archaeological finds suggest that a population of 750,000 could have been sustained.
[Population estimates of non-Whites are typically exaggerated by White-hating academics, in order to magnify the horror of European colonization.]
British colonisation of Australia began in Sydney in 1788. The most immediate consequence of British settlement - within weeks of the first colonists' arrival - was a wave of Old World epidemic diseases. Smallpox alone killed more than 50% of the Aboriginal population living in the vicinity of Sydney. The second consequence of British settlement was appropriation of land and water resources. The combination of disease, loss of land and direct violence reduced the Aboriginal population by up to 80% between 1788 and 1900. A wave of massacres and resistance followed the frontier of British settlement. By the 1870s all the fertile areas of Australia had been appropriated, and Indigenous communities reduced to impoverished remnants living either on the fringes of cities and towns or on lands considered unsuitable for settlement. Many Indigenous people adapted to European culture, working as stock hands or labourers. With the exception of a few in the remote interior, all surviving Indigenous communities gradually became dependent on the settler population for their livelihood. By the early 20th century the Indigenous population had declined to an estimated 150,000 from 190,000.
Commonwealth legislation in 1962 specifically gave Aborigines the right to vote in Commonwealth elections. The 1967 referendum allowed the Commonwealth to make laws with respect to Aboriginal people, and for Aboriginal people to be included when the country does a count to determine electoral representation. In the 1971 controversial Gove land rights case, Justice Blackburn ruled that Australia had been terra nullius before British settlement, and that no concept of native title existed in Australian law. In 1972, the Aboriginal Tent Embassy was established on the steps of Parliament House in Canberra. In 1992, the High Court of Australia handed down its decision in the Mabo Case, declaring the previous legal concept of terra nullius to be invalid.
|February 12th, 2008||#6|
The present Aboriginal population in Australia is around 460,000, which is about 2,27 % of the total Australian population. They live in all parts of Australia, but there is a large concentration in Queensland.
In 1972, the Aboriginal Land Right Commission was established to investigate how land could be returned to the Aboriginals. This was the first time that the Australian government acknowledged that land was taken away from the Aboriginals and that it was right to give it back. This research was limited to the Northern Territory, which directly fell under the Federal Australian Government.
|February 12th, 2008||#8|
The natural way to report the data below would focus on the extraordinary, by White standards, proclivity for crime the abos exhibit. Academic Broadhurst, predictably, sticks with the jew-leftist convention of portraying protected minority as the victim rather than the perpetrators. Leftists only mention minority groups and crime in two ways: to claim they are overrepresented in prison and as victims of crime. Omitted are the essential facts that they are victims of crimes committed by their own kind, and that they are not overrepresented in prison, they are committing far more jailable offenses, per capita, than other groups. As we see above, the actual fact of the matter is they are punished less heavily than Whites.
Aborigines and Crime in Australia
Crime and Justice, Vol. 21, Ethnicity, Crime and Immigration: Comparative and Cross-National Perspectives (1997), pp. 407-468
This article consists of 62 page(s).
- 16 times more likely in Western Australia to be victims of homicide and
- 6.5 times more likely to report crimes against the person to police than are non-Aborigines
- 9.2 times more likely to be arrested
- 6.2 times more likely to be imprisoned by lower courts
- 23.7 times more likely to be imprisoned as an adult
- 48 times more likely to be imprisoned as juveniles than non-Aborigines.
The increased overrepresentation from arrest to imprisonment appears largely a function of the very high levels of recidivism found among Aborigines:
- 88 percent of male Aborigines are rearrested compared with 52 percent of non-Aborigines
- 75 percent of Aborigines return to prison at least once compared with 43 percent of non-Aboriginal males.
States with a high Aboriginal "cultural strength" and socioeconomic "stress" index are the most punitive. "Cultural strength," "stress," and imprisonment are highly correlated and associated with those states with the most "frontier" characteristics.
[Entire article only available in paid archive.]
|February 13th, 2008||#9|
Brief History of Jew Attempts to Inculcate Guilt in White Australians
SYDNEY, Australia (JTA) -- In what could be described as Australia's
Yom Kippur, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd expressed Wednesday the one word
his predecessors refused to utter to indigenous Australians: Sorry.
Rudd's Labor Party wrested power from John Howard's Liberals Last
November on a platform that included apologizing to the "Stolen
Generations" -- up to 100,000 mostly mixed-blood Aboriginal children
who were forcibly removed from their families between 1910 and 1970.
The text of the motion on the Stolen Generations, which won bipartisan
support, acknowledged the "profound grief, suffering and loss"
inflicted on Aborigines.
Australian Jews, some of whom have been at the forefront of the
decades-long reconciliation effort, applauded the apology. "To the
mothers and the fathers, the brothers and the sisters, for the
breaking up of families and communities, we say sorry," Rudd said.
"And for the indignity and degradation thus inflicted on a proud
people and a proud culture, we say sorry." In a historic speech that
drew cheers and tears, Rudd said he hoped the apology would remove "a
great stain from the nation's soul." Mark Leibler, the co-chair of
Reconciliation Australia, a national organization that promotes
reconciliation, said Rudd's apology marked a "watershed" in Australian
history but that this should be just the beginning of the
reconciliation process. [Translation: now that the jews have got the Whites to admit guilt, they can start guilting money out of them at higher levels than they already are.]
"The shame as far as this country is concerned will not be cleared up
until we bridge the 17-year gap in the life expectancy between
indigenous and non-indigenous Australians," said Leibler, who attended
the apology ceremony in Canberra on Wednesday. Leibler is also the
chairman of the world board of trustees of Keren Hayesod/United Israel
Appeal and national chairman of the Australia/Israel and Jewish
Affairs Council. "We've suffered 2,000 years of [imaginary] persecution, and we
understand what it is to be the underdog and to suffer from
disadvantage," he said. Jews have been at the forefront of pushing for
civil rights in Australia.
In 1965, Jim Spigelman, a cousin of the Pulitzer Prize-winning
cartoonist Art Spiegelman and now chief justice of the Supreme Court
of New South Wales, led 30 students on the first Australian Freedom
Ride -- a journey into Outback Australia to protest racial
discrimination against Aborigines, who were not entitled to vote and
were prohibited from swimming pools, pubs and other public places. In
the country town of Moree, a racist mob attacked the students and,
according to newspaper reports at the time, Spigelman was smacked to
the ground. The man most Jews and Aborigines hail as having made the
greatest contribution to the cause of Aboriginal rights is Ron Castan,
a Jewish Australian dubbed by Aboriginal leaders as the "great white
[Precise parallels to the judeo-communist revolutionary work in the so-called civil rights movement of the 1960s in America.]
Castan, who died in 1999, was the lead counsel in the landmark 1992
Australian Supreme Court "Mabo judgment" -- named for plaintiff Eddie
Mabo -- which overturned the legal fiction that Australia was "terra
nullius," or an uninhabited land, when white settlers first arrived in
1788. Aborigines now own more than 10 percent of Australia's land
mass. In a 1998 speech, Castan implored the government to say it was
sorry, citing Holocaust denial in his argument. "The refusal to
apologize for dispossession, for massacres and for the theft of
children is the Australian equivalent of the Holocaust deniers --
those who say it never really happened," Castan charged.
In 1999, Howard proposed a motion expressing "deep and sincere regret"
for the injustices suffered by Aborigines, but the then-prime minister
said Australians "should not be required to accept guilt and blame"
for the policies of previous governments.
Aborigines number about 450,000 in an Australian population of 21
million. [Other estimates say they are 200,000] They are the most disadvantaged group in Australia, suffering
high rates of infant mortality, unemployment, alcohol abuse and
domestic violence. More than 100 members of the Stolen Generations
were present at Wednesday's ceremony, which was broadcast live on
national television and on giant screens across the country. "Our
faith teaches and emphasizes the universal principles of coexistence
and respect for human dignity and rights," [lied] Rabbi Mordechai Gutnick,
the president of the Organization of Rabbis of Australia, said in a
statement. "It teaches the need to recognize and rectify any failings
we may display in our interaction between our fellow man. To say
'sorry' in a meaningful manner goes a long way in ensuring that
mistakes and discrimination will not be repeated."
In addition to their activism on Aboriginal issues, Jews were
instrumental in leading the crusade against the White Australia
Policy, a series of laws from 1901 to 1973 that restricted non-white
immigration to Australia.
[Again: direct parallel to jews' work in America. Jews were the driving power behind the overturning of the 1924 immigration act that kept stocks in their current balance. After the 1965 "reform," immigration to America became over 90% non-White, to say nothing of illegal invasion, which burgeoned.]
The president of the Executive Council of
Australian Jewry, Robert Goot, said he is proud of the Jewish
community's ongoing commitment to reconciliation. Rudd's apology
marked "the beginning in a new chapter in the quest by indigenous
Australians for complete equality with their fellow Australians," Goot
observed. Rabbi Jeremy Lawrence of the Great Synagogue in Sydney said
in a speech on reconciliation last week that Jews must not "deny nor
stand by nor stand silent in the face of the pain of the Stolen
Generations. It is incumbent on us to acknowledge the wrong, to
apologize for the damage caused."
Noting the importance to Jews of the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial in
Jerusalem, the British-born rabbi said Australia should have a similar
institution for Aborigines. "There ought to be a national place where
people who have suffered can come and identify with their past and
understand that the incursion of their culture and heritage has been
recognized and an apology has been made," he said. Rudd's apology
comes more than a decade after a 1997 inquiry in Australia's
parliament, called the "Bringing Them Home" report, concluded that the
Aborigines suffered "an act of genocide aimed at wiping out indigenous
families, communities and cultures." The report urged the government
to apologize and offer compensation to the victims and their families.
The apology offers no recourse to compensation, although the issue is
now being hotly debated. It also reignited the so-called "history
wars" between those who believe the Stolen Generations were kidnapped
in a sinister attempt to breed out their Aboriginality and others who
say it was a benevolent attempt to save half-caste children from the
ills of Aboriginal society.
|February 14th, 2008||#10|
Join Date: Nov 2007
My views on the $orry situation are found below -
This episode looks at the ramifications of Kevin Rudd's decision to say 'sorry' to the so-called stolen generation. The cost of this decision will be HUGE.
The Voice - The Dash for Cash
Duration - 23 minutes 58 seconds
File Size - 5.48mb
Recording Date - December 20, 2007
As for the Aboriginal 'situation' expect a new episode of The Voice this weekend based on my article - Aboriginals - A personal account which I wrote a number of years ago.
|February 16th, 2008||#11|
Discussion of The Apology in second hour of
Radio Istina, February 14, 2008
|February 21st, 2008||#12|
John Roughan: Stolen generations story a distortion of history
5:00AM Saturday February 16, 2008
By John Roughan
When you see history being written you realise how much of it is mere legend.
Australia hasn't got a particularly exciting history. Once you've read past the convicts it becomes quiet and constitutional.
The closest they came to a civil convulsion was a goldfields rebellion by drunken Irish miners, much celebrated today at the "Eureka Stockade", that lasted all of a Sunday morning in 1853.
They have nothing like the colonial wars in this country.
The displacement of Australia's ancient pre-colonial population was a largely private, casual and dimly recorded atrocity. It haunts the country's story rather than leaving a catalogue of battles that could be mythologised today.
So they have invented a legend from living memory. By "they" I do not mean only Aboriginal revivalists. The "stolen generations" story, now carrying the official imprimatur of this week's Federal Government apology, is as much a creation of white authors, journalists, film-makers, scholars and even jurists freed from the need of forensic proof.
Just about everybody now believes that as recently as the 1950s Aboriginal children were being dragged from the arms of clutching parents by cold-hearted agents of the state for purposes that could not be good.
I would believe it too if I hadn't read a paper delivered by a Melbourne lawyer, Douglas Meagher, QC, to a seminar in 2000.
His suspicions of the stolen generation story had been aroused when reading the 1997 report of an inquiry by a fellow jurist, Sir Ronald Wilson.
Meagher, whose father was in the state government, was surprised by a reference to someone he had known quite well. He found it impossible to believe this person, a highly respected Aborigine who ran a holiday project in Melbourne for children from northern mission stations, would have been associated with a scheme the Wilson Report said was designed never to return the children.
His curiosity kindled, he studied the report for the evidence. The accusation turned out to be based on a woman, identified by a number, who said that when in Melbourne on the holiday scheme she was billeted with people who applied to adopt her. Which they did, the report said, without reference to her parents.
But 56 pages later, the same witness mentions that while she was in Melbourne her mother had died and, a few sentences later, that her father had died too. The report glosses over the fact that she had become an orphan, noting heavily, "She never saw her parents again."
Meagher gave several other examples of policies and practices at the time that have been grossly misinterpreted for the stolen generations story. The report treats children as "stolen" even when they were state wards rescued from abuse or neglect.
He went on to act for the Commonwealth in a court case brought by former mission children in the Northern Territory after the Wilson Report called their treatment "a crime against humanity".
The trial was devastating for the stolen generations tale. Far from being kidnapped, the evidence showed that many in the mission hostels had been placed there by their parents and went home for holidays. The exceptions were child welfare placements, subject to court orders from 1953.
The hostels had Aborigines on their staff. Parents, relatives and tribal elders freely visited. When the children grew up many exchanged Christmas cards with staff and happily attended reunions. In fact, the litigants were to be seen embracing the now elderly mission sisters and reminiscing happily outside the court.
These people had a typical 1950s education, lacking today's cultural sensitivity. That's bad enough if you believe constant cultural connections to be essential but it probably fails to outrage you. Hence the hype. Ever the lawyer, Meagher was reluctant to say the distortions were wilful. But they are, I suspect. They are a symptom of a late 20th century intellectual disease called post-modernism.
Post-modernism holds that nothing can be known for certain, that anything is valid if enough people need to believe it.
Post-modernism does not do history, it does 'histories". Writers don't have to verify what they are told, they are saluted for enabling the downtrodden to tell their stories.
But authors of the stolen generations seem to have generously egged the pudding. Witnesses in the Northern Territory case could not confirm some of the lurid tales publications attributed to them.
When post-modern social propagandists use terms like "stolen" most people take them literally. Feature writers, documentary makers and film directors read polemical studies of "stolen generations" and imagine G-men in fedoras descending on remote communities.
But if Australia feels better that a Prime Minister has said sorry, does it matter? Aborigines deserve an apology for worse. It's tough on the reputations of well-meaning people now mostly dead, but that's history. It will be corrected sometime.
|April 7th, 2008||#13|
Join Date: Jun 2004
|June 1st, 2008||#14|
Join Date: Oct 2007
Aborigines 'don't know rape is illegal'
By Tara Ravens
May 28, 2008 06:53pm
MORE than 90 per cent of people in Arnhem Land do not understand basic legal concepts, with many Aborigines under the impression that white society is "lawless", a report has found.
This has resulted in wrongful imprisonment and "massive confusion", with some communities still unaware that rape is considered illegal, says Richard Trudgen, CEO of the Aboriginal Resource and Development Services (ARDS).
In a report titled An Absence of Mutual Respect, researchers spoke to Yolngu people from a cross-section of the community, including interpreters, locals and community leaders.
They were quizzed on the 30 most commonly used English legal words such as bail, commit, arrest, charge and guilty.
The ARDS report found 95 per cent of Yolngu people were unable to correctly identify their meaning.
Only 17 per cent of responses from language professionals were correct while 90 per cent of community leaders, such as ATSIC members, school teachers and council representatives, had no understanding of the terms at all.
Ninety-seven per cent of Yolngu people born after 1967 fell into the lowest category of understanding.
"This research found that many Aboriginal people from Arnhem Land had little comprehension of what was happening in the legal system," Mr Trudgen said.
"This still leads to many outcomes that are unjust and can also be a factor in some people getting into further trouble.
"Many elders also believe it is one of the main reasons for increased crime on Aboriginal communities."
Mr Trudgen said the results explained the stark over-representation of Aborigines in territory prisons currently over 80 per cent and why increasing numbers of young males were falling foul of the law after moving to large urban centres.
"People thought that pleading guilty actually got them through the court quickly and they didn't go to jail," he said.
"There is massive confusion out there about white fella law point blank."
In conclusion, the report found many Aborigines were disempowered when it came to dealing with the legal system, and it recommended communication programs to bridge the gap.
It said Aboriginal people often thought they were functioning within a lawless society because "they don't understand it so they see it as lawless".
This can lead to "quite devastating consequences", said Mr Trudgen, who referred to the case of an elder who had asked him if rape was illegal.
"When I said yes, he told me `none of our young people know that'.
"This is 2008. When are we going to have an emergency response into communication in these communities?"
Researchers also interviewed some people in prison.
"When they realised what the term guilty meant they were able to identify some of the things that they were convicted of that they never had anything to do with," Mr Trudgen said.
|June 16th, 2010||#17|
Join Date: Mar 2008
Australia plans to change 'racist' policy that restricts how Outback Aborigines spend
Australia plans to change 'racist' policy that restricts how Outback Aborigines spend welfare
CANBERRA, Australia Australia plans to reform a policy criticized as racist for restricting how Outback Aborigines spend their welfare checks by applying it to recipients regardless of ethnicity, the prime minister said Wednesday.
The government introduced so-called "income management" into Aboriginal settlements in the remote Northern Territory three years ago. The policy aims to reduce alcohol and drug abuse by withholding part of Aborigines' welfare checks so the money can only be spent on essentials such as food, clothing and rent.
It was part of a package of radical measures aimed at tackling rampant sexual abuse of indigenous children.
Aborigines are the poorest ethnic group in Australia, and many Aboriginal communities survive almost entirely on welfare.
The government wants to extend the spending restrictions to everyone not just Aborigines receiving welfare payments in Northern Territory from July 1, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said Wednesday. People new to welfare will also have their spending restricted if social workers think they need help handling money.
The changes will depend on legislation proposed next week to the Senate, where the government holds a minority of seats.
The measures will "ensure that more welfare is spent on life's essentials like food, clothes and rent and less goes to alcohol," Rudd told Parliament.
It will "support and encourage families to make positive decisions about the critical things for their families like education, health and nutrition," he added.
The United Nations special rapporteur on indigenous human rights, James Anaya, last year described welfare management as "demeaning" and incompatible with Australia's obligations under indigenous and human rights conventions.
Irene Khan, secretary-general of the London-based human rights group Amnesty International, mirrored Anaya's criticisms after visiting squalid Outback camps last year, saying such measures targeting Aborigines compromised human rights.
Richard Downs, of the Alyawarr Aboriginal tribe in the Northern Territory, said he expected Aborigines would be disproportionately targeted under the loose rules of the new system.
"Indigenous people seem to be put in a class of criminals and people who can't manage their lives," Downs said.
Amnesty International Australia said in a statement that while the new regime would not be directly racially discriminatory, concerns remain that it would disproportionately effect Aborigines.
Aborigines make up about 2 per cent of Australia's 22 million-strong population. But almost 30 per cent of the Northern Territory's population of 200,000 is Aboriginal, the highest proportion in the country.
Opposition leader Tony Abbott told Parliament on Wednesday he supported the changes, indicating the legislation may pass in the Senate.
|June 16th, 2010||#18|
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: high rainfall coastal strip of the White Continent nation
The dark skins tend to group together publicly, but privately don't have much to do with each other.
Greeks are even accepted in "Black Boys" aboriginal football teams.
|July 31st, 2010||#19|
Join Date: Mar 2008
Israel memorial for Aboriginal protester
Israel memorial for Aboriginal protester
July 31, 2010 - 4:34PM
An Aboriginal elder is to be honoured for his unique role in opposing Nazi Germany's persecution of Jews, with a memorial to be unveiled at Israel's Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum.
|August 1st, 2010||#20|
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: high rainfall coastal strip of the White Continent nation