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The Forum > Article Comments > Government doing something for Indigenous people not with them ... > Comments

Government doing something for Indigenous people not with them ... : Comments

By Sara Hudson, published 29/6/2010

To date $77 million in government funding has gone into Outback Stores - this seems an awful waste of resources.

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$77 million on Outback Stores,eh?
Hmmm!
That would buy a lot of Kentucky frieds and two litre bottles of Coke.
Heck. let 'em have it. So what? That's better than all those ponk bats that killed some poor devils quickly.Slow death is an entirely different thing.

socratease
Posted by socratease, Wednesday, 30 June 2010 10:13:22 PM
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Socratease,

Why do you think it is so slow ? Half of the unemployed population in remote Aboriginal communities is dead before forty. There's the gap: forty years in remote communities amongst unemployed peole - and less than ten years in the cities amongst employed Aboriginal people.

And surely one pathway to cheaper fruit and vegetables etc. in remote communities would involve reviving the gardens and orchards that the missions set up, along with their chook-yards and dairy cows ? Yes, not every community can do that (it would be sort of nice if ONE community was doing it !) but at those communities where there were once flourishing gardens, i.e. where there is enough water, those enterprises could be supplying neighbouring communities which do not have water with fresh fruit, vegetables, eggs and milk. What proportion of all of the remote communities would that cover ? 80 % ? 90 % ?

Of course, apart from the inclination to put the work in, communities would need to modify their leasing arrangements, to allow groups within communities to have exclusive use of a few acres out of their millions of acres, to grow food without harassment, for sale at reasonable (e.g. city) prices. Those who do not want to pay for food grown with local labour, on the grounds that it is grown on Aboriginal land, should be totally free to harvest all the food they like on the rest of 'their' land.

I'm not holding my breath.

Joe Lane
Posted by Loudmouth, Thursday, 1 July 2010 9:49:33 AM
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Good Gawd,Loudmouth, you're thinking of putting those poor indigenous people to WORK!!
Build more CentreLinks closer toi them.get it right!!
You've been off your medication far too long,mate.
socratease
Posted by socratease, Thursday, 1 July 2010 4:57:30 PM
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Actually, when you examine the early history of many Aboriginal communities they were simply holding stations for cheap labor for the agricultural and cattle industries. Many Aboriginal people worked for less than half the wages of their white co workers or were given rations instead on wages.

All of my fathers generation worked from a very young age on cattle properties of farms whose produce sustained and grew the non Aboriginal townships dotted across the northern reaches of Australia. Many of them worked on their own traditional lands, lands that were given by government to white pastoralists for a pepper corn rent or lease. Aboriginal people were not by law - allowed to own or lease crown land. The opinion put forward here by Sarah Hudson is in my view correct in terms of how badly designed government funding programs are for remote communities. The rationale for funding changes every three years with the change of government and especially Ministers of Aboriginal affairs who invariably 'try their hand' at solving 'Aboriginal problems'.

But itís often the design of programs, the lack of real consultation, a complete ignorance of the economic history of the region (and especailly the Aboriginal labor history) welfare dependency and no transfer of skills that see sustainable changes occurring.
Posted by Rainier, Monday, 5 July 2010 2:56:30 PM
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