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First Nations Peoples’ Issues

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Government’s own Community Development Program (CDP) evaluation indicates poor outcomes  

The Government’s evaluation of the CDP program reveals no secrets: people’s lives are worse, First Nations peoples are more likely to be penalised and are penalised more often which is what communities and researchers have been saying for a long time.

“This CDP evaluation still doesn’t get to the heart of the issue –why people in remote regions, 83% of whom are First Nations peoples have to be subjected to a work for the dole scheme that is far harsher and more punitive than their city counterparts,"Senator Rachel Siewert said.

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Industry that has preyed on vulnerable people must pay up

The financial services industry has a record of preying on vulnerable people and the deliberate targeting of people in remote First Nations communities is particulararly egregious.

"During the Royal Commission we heard sickening evidence of companies targeting regional and remote areas for funeral insurance often signing people up who had little understanding of what the policies meant, language barriers and the use of Aboriginal “branding” to trick people into thinking they were signing up with an Aboriginal organisation, Senator Rachel Siewert said. 

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Greens commend Triple j and councils around Australia for acknowledgement that January 26 excludes First Nations peoples and denies our shared history

The Australian Greens commend organisations and councils around the country who decided not to hold celebrations or official ceremonies on January 26.

“While Mr Morrison believes he can force Australians to celebrate a date that marks dispossession and violence, a growing number of Australians, councils and organisations around the country know that January 26 is a painful day for First Nations peoples and choose not to celebrate, Greens spokesperson on First Nations issues Senator Rachel Siewert said.

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Minster Price must extend consultation for WA Woodside project

The Australian Greens are calling on the federal Minister for the Environment, Melissa Price to extend the notification period for Woodside’s dredging and pipeline proposal near WA’s Dampier Archipelago marine reserves.

“Releasing unpopular information and in particular environmental assessment documentation just before Christmas and other public holidays is one of the oldest tricks in the book. This is a very important area and oil and gas activity needs careful assessment, Rachel Siewert, Australian Greens Senator for WA said. 

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Australian Greens welcome Triple j holding firm on moving Hottest 100 countdown

The Australian Greens have welcomed Triple j holding firm on their commitment to move their Hottest 100 countdown from January 26.

“More and more people in our community, as well as organisations and institutions around the country are joining the movement for justice, Australian Greens spokesperson on First Nations issues Senator Rachel Siewert said today.

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Senate votes down Greens motion to Change the Date, despite another year of growing community momentum

I’m disappointed that the Senate has voted down my motion calling on the Government to consult with First Nations communities to change the day we celebrate Australia.

“We have seen some exciting developments this year with more local councils and community leaders working for justice in their communities.

“It’s disappointing that after the strong community support for the Uluru Statement from the Heart and the tabling of the report on Constitutional Recognition just last week that the major parties won’t even commit to this small step.

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Senate inquiry into rural and remote mental health recommends strategic approach, investment in workforce and community led approaches, particularly in First Nations communities

The senate has today tabled the Community Affairs References committee report into the Accessibility and quality of mental health services in rural and remote Australia.

“Myself and Senator O’Neill referred this issue to inquiry after the Royal Flying Doctor Service released a major report sparking a national conversation around the state of mental health and services in rural and remote regions, Senator Rachel Siewert, Australian Greens spokesperson on mental health said.

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Australian Greens table minority report to Joint Select Committee on Constitutional Recognition relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples

The Australian Greens have tabled a minority report to the final report of the Joint Select Committee on Constitutional Recognition relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.

"We have sought through the years of discussion on constitutional recognition to get multiparty support for constitutional recognition in a form that is supported by First Nations Peoples and capable of being supported by an overwhelming majority of Australians.

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Labor does deal with Government to make newly arrived migrants wait for Newstart for four years    

The Australian Greens are extremely disappointed by reports that the Government has done a deal with ALP that will mean newly arrived migrants will have to wait four years before they can access working aged payments like Newstart.

"The ALP have condemned newly arrived migrants who can’t find work to poverty, Senator Rachel Siewert said. 

“This is an outrageous attack on our multicultural community and I’m frankly surprised that members of the Labor party thinks it’s okay for people to come to our country and basically receive no support when they need it.

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Senate supports Greens motion to abandon discriminatory Community Development Program (CDP) Bill 

The senate has today supported a Greens motion to abandon the CDP Bill that is currently before the senate.

“The Government should not be pushing ahead with this Bill – they haven’t consulted on these changes and there are better options available which are proposed by First Nations peoples, but once again this Government have ignored First Nations peoples, Senator Rachel Siewert said.

“Minister Scullion failed to release the final evaluation of the CDP and says that they are still “consulting” with communities before releasing it.

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