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Don't make the mistakes of NT in the Kimberley

Media Release
Rachel Siewert 30 Oct 2008

The Australian Greens today called for caution in rolling out the NT Intervention to areas such as the Kimberley, instead pushing for continued funding with a more community based focus.

"While we definitely need to address the long term underinvestment in Indigenous communities, what is needed is an evidence based approach that aims to build on what already works," said Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert.

"Out of the nearly half a billion dollars that has been spent on the Intervention to date, very little has gone on child protection. A huge amount of the much needed investment has been spent on administration, not services."

"In Senate Estimates last week we heard that 13 of the 16 planned safe houses had been constructed, however due to health concerns associated with fumes, these had not been put into active use," said Senator Siewert.

"What is needed is better understanding of individual community needs, with more investment in decent housing, education and health services."

"With Indigenous disadvantage in areas such as the Kimberley, we certainly shouldn't be following the heavy handed, top down approach applied by Brough and Howard."

"Indigenous Australia needs the attention and level of investment we currently see in the NT, but not the populist politics and racist approach that has been applied alongside," she concluded.

For more information or media enquiries please call Tim Norton on 0418 401 180

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