WGAR News: Visit to Australia by Amnesty International Secretary General Irene Khan (21 Nov 09)

WGAR: Working Group for Aboriginal Rights (Australia)

WGAR website: http://wgar.info/

Visit to Australia by Amnesty International Secretary General Irene Khan
Government progress report on the NT Intervention
Upcoming NT Intervention Protests
Other NT Intervention Articles
Other Aboriginal Articles


- News

National Indigenous Times:
Indigenous poverty as 'morally outrageous' as torture: Amnesty head
19 Nov 09: "The poverty experienced by many Aboriginal people is as morally reprehensible as torture and must be eradicated, Amnesty International secretary-general Irene Khan says. In Australia for a week-long visit, Ms Khan has also called on the Rudd government to end the discriminatory measures of the Northern Territory intervention into remote Indigenous communities. They were "stigmatising and disempowering an already marginalised people", she said."

Koori Mail: Amnesty criticises intervention
[scroll down page] http://www.koorimail.com/index.php
18 Nov 09: "AMNESTY International says it's 'morally repugnant' that many Indigenous people live in poverty in a country as rich as Australia. In Canberra today, the human rights agency's Secretary General Irene Khan described compulsory income quarantining under the NT intervention as 'a blunt instrument' that unnecessarily pitted one set of human rights against another, and said the Federal Government was not genuinely engaging with Indigenous people."

ABC: ‘Tide of human tragedy’ affecting Aborigines
18 Nov 09: "The Secretary-General of Amnesty International has criticised the Federal Government for its failure to lift Aboriginal people out of dire poverty. Irene Khan says she is appalled by conditions in the remote Aboriginal communities she recently visited in the Northern Territory. She says the human rights of Aboriginal people are being violated."

Rollback the Intervention: Latest News
[scroll down page] http://rollbacktheintervention.wordpress.com/
16 Nov 09: "Members of IRAG [Intervention Rollback Action Group] met with Irene Khan, Secretary General of Amnesty International, and the Amnesty team. Ms Khan was presented with a book of the statements collected over the past year from Aboriginal people attending convergences and gatherings, from individual Aboriginal people, and other relevant statements. Information was also given verbally on people’s experiences under the NT Intervention. Amnesty has a strong commitment to ensuring the Racial Discrimination Act is reinstated and that any special measures comply with Australia’s international obligations."

National Indigenous Times:
INTERVENTION TALES: Amnesty head shocked by conditions in Central Australia
16 Nov 09: "The Secretary General of Amnesty International [Irene Khan] has likened conditions in Central Australia to the poorest parts of Africa and Asia, and described the gap between rich and poor in this country as the most stark she's even seen. ... The 2006 Sydney Peace Prize winner is in Australia this week as part of a campaign by Amnesty International to urge the Rudd government to reinstate the Racial Discrimination Act to the Northern Territory emergency intervention legislation. Her trip includes a meeting with the Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Jenny Macklin in Canberra tomorrow (Tuesday), and an address to the National Press Club later in the week."

ABC: Shocking conditions in Utopia: Amnesty
16 Nov 09: "Irene Khan visited the Utopia region yesterday to assess the impact of government policies, such as the Northern Territory Emergency Response. She says intervention policies such as the suspension of the Racial Discrimination Act are contributing to Aboriginal poverty in Central Australia."

- Audio

ABC PM: Amnesty condemns NT intervention
18 Nov 09: "The Secretary General of Amnesty International [Irene Khan] has met the Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin in Canberra to tell her of Amnesty's condemnation of the Northern Territory intervention. ... From our Canberra studio this afternoon, Irene Khan told me that she'd seen Jenny Macklin after visiting the Aboriginal community at Utopia in the Northern Territory."

Rollback the Intervention: Audio
"November 15 2009: Barkly Shire President Rosalie Kunoth-Monks opens session with Amnesty International secretary general Irene Khan at Utopia , NT (5 mins)"

- Action

Amnesty International Australia: The unheard truth in the heart of Australia
19 Nov 09: " "In the heart of this first world I found scenes more reminiscent of the third world. That Indigenous peoples experience human rights violations on a continent of such privilege is not merely disheartening, it is morally outrageous. The moral imperative to eradicate such poverty is no less an imperative on government than to eliminate torture." Irene Khan ... This was the reaction of Amnesty International Secretary General Irene Khan upon her visit to the Utopia Homelands last week."


- Background

WGAR News: NT Intervention: Government progress report on the NT Intervention (15 Nov 09)
[scroll down page] http://perth.indymedia.org/?action=newswire&parentview=148730

- Opinion

Green Left: Gov't report condemns NT intervention
18 Nov 09: "The Northern Territory Emergency Response, a “tough love” government intervention into remote NT Aboriginal communities, has been renamed by the federal ALP government. Its official name is now "Closing the Gap NT". However, a new government progress report on the intervention has revealed it’s causing the huge gap between Aboriginal people and non-Aboriginal people to widen." Peter Robson

National Indigenous Times:
THE POINTED VIEW: Spin over substance in intervention report
12 Nov 09: "The Minister for Indigenous Affair's take on "evidence-based" policy is concerning, writes LARISSA BEHRENDT*. There is no doubt that this Minister of Indigenous Affairs is good at spin. She has deflected all range of policy failures with the trite phrase, "I just care about women and children". ... The Minister has a tendency to spin what she claims are positive outcomes from the Northern Territory intervention." Larissa Behrendt, Professor of Law at the University of Technology, Sydney

National Indigenous Times:
TERRITORY TALKIN': News from a flailed state
12 Nov 09: "It's unlike Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin to hide her light under a bushel, but TT can't help noticing that an intervention review report has been posted on the FaHCSIA website without the usual drum-roll and fanfare of trumpets. And it's not even called the 'intervention review' anymore, having morphed into the warmer and cuddlier title of 'Closing the Gap in the Northern Territory'. "Why is it so?" Julius Sumner Miller would doubtless have wanted to know." Graham Ring, based in Darwin


Stop the Intervention
[scroll down page] http://stoptheintervention.org/
"Ralley Thursday, 26 November 2009
12:30 pm @ FaHCSIA office, 280 Elizabeth Street, Sydney (near Central)
Unconditionally restore the Racial Discrimination Act: Racism is not a special measure"

Rollback the Intervention: Upcoming Events
[scroll down page] http://rollbacktheintervention.wordpress.com/
"13 February 2010 “SORRY IS NOT ENOUGH”
National Day of Action
Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra, Byron Bay,
Alice Springs, Darwin, Perth
2nd Anniversary of the Apology to the Stolen Generations
Still no compensation
Still a racist NT Intervention
Still Deaths in Custody
Less jobs, more imprisonment for Aboriginal people"

Stop the Intervention
[scroll down page] http://stoptheintervention.org/
"Request for endorsement of protests on February 13, 2010
On the 13th of February 2010, Stop the Intervention Collective Sydney (STICS) is organising a protest as part of a national day of action against the NT Intervention and for Aboriginal rights."

Stop the Intervention
[scroll down page] http://stoptheintervention.org/
"Statement by representatives from "prescribed communities"
A call for protests on February 13, 2010
Macklin breaks another promise - Racism is not a "special measure" "


- Background on the Northern Territory Intervention

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
Northern Territory National Emergency Response


- Radio

CAAMA Radio News AM
(Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association):
19 Nov 09: "The Racial Discrimination act will not be reinstated in the Northern Territory this year."

- News

ABC Alice Springs: 2010 vote for Racial Discrimination Act
19 Nov 09: "The Federal Government will not reinstate the Racial Discrimination Act in the Northern Territory this year. The former government suspended the laws as part of the Northern Territory intervention. Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin plans to introduce legislation next week to reinstate the Racial Discrimination Act - but it will not be voted on until next year."

National Indigenous Times:
Aboriginal woman appointed NT anti-discrimination commissioner
18 Nov 09: "An Aboriginal woman will serve as Anti-Discrimination Commissioner of the Northern Territory for the first time. NT Attorney-General Delia Lawrie on Tuesday named Patricia Miller to the position, after several days of controversy and speculation surrounding the appointment. ... In the role, Dr Miller said she would play an important part in the reinstatement and enforcement of the national Racial Discrimination Act."

National Indigenous Times:
Dodson wants an end to income management
18 Nov 09: "COMPULSORY income management is doing nothing to improve the wellbeing of Aborigines in Northern Territory communities, indigenous leader Mick Dodson says. The Australian of the Year says the measure, one of the more extreme elements of Federal intervention, has the capacity to do enormous damage. "Especially when it's targeted at Aboriginal people," he told a national welfare conference in Canberra on Tuesday."

Australian: Housing reviews remain secret
17 Nov 09: "THE Northern Territory government has rejected the need for public scrutiny of the crisis-plagued Strategic Indigenous Housing and Infrastructure Project, refusing to release its external reviews into the first stage of the Aboriginal housing program."

Australian: Home scheme falling short
16 Nov 09: "FOUR out of five proposed renovations to houses in several central Australian communities have been scrapped because of cost blowouts in the crisis-ridden $672 million Aboriginal housing program, which is yet to build a single house."

ABC: Indigenous kids' lung problems 'not followed-up'
16 Nov 09: "A senior Northern Territory doctor says the federal intervention documented serious lung problems in thousands of Indigenous children but not enough resources have been provided to follow-up the issue."

National Indigenous Times:
TWO WORLDS: Power to the forgotten people
12 Nov 09: "NIT editor-at-large CHRIS GRAHAM* has been travelling through Central Australia, reporting on the NT intervention. You won't believe what he found."


- Research Monograph

Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research:
Power, Culture, Economy: Indigenous Australians and Mining
"Jon Altman and David Martin (Eds)
Research Monograph 30 / 2009"

- Opinion

National Indigenous Times:
NIT FORUMS: Restoring identity before it's too late
12 Nov 09: "Governments must get serious about providing proper reparations to members of the Stolen Generations, writes VAVAA MAWULI*." Vavaa Mawuli, a senior solicitor in the Indigenous Justice Program at the Public Interest Advocacy Centre

- News

National Indigenous Times:
Last bomb testing land to be returned to traditional owners
18 Nov 09: "The final section of the former British Maralinga nuclear test site in South Australia is to be handed back to its traditional owners. The state government on Tuesday introduced legislation to parliament to allow for Section 400, an area of 3,100 square kilometres, to be returned to the Maralinga Tjarutja people."

National Indigenous Times:
Freddo charges against Aboriginal 12-year-old likely to be dropped
18 Nov 09: "A 12-year-old Aboriginal boy charged with receiving a chocolate Freddo Frog is almost certain to have charges against him withdrawn following the intervention of the West Australian police commissioner. The boy, who appeared on Monday in Northam Children's Court, east of Perth, has indicated he will plead not guilty to counts of receiving a Freddo Frog and a novelty sign, allegedly stolen from stores in the area."

National Indigenous Times:
Healthy food needed on outback shelves: report finds
17 Nov 09: "More can and must be done to ensure community stores in remote Aboriginal communities are providing fresh and healthy food at a reasonable cost, an inquiry has found. Heart disease, diabetes, kidney failure and obesity are major problems in Indigenous communities nationwide. But a federal inquiry into outback stores, tabled in federal parliament on Monday, has found fresh produce in remote locations is 20 per cent more expensive than in cities."

Croakey: Is the NT leading the way in primary health care reform and Indigenous health partnerships?
11 Nov 09: "The launch on Remembrance Day of Pathways to community control was a poignant moment for Stephanie Bell, chairperson of AMSANT [Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance Northern Territory]. For the first time, the Commonwealth and a “state” government—the Northern Territory—had reached an agreement with the Aboriginal Community Controlled health sector to expand community-controlled primary health care across a whole jurisdiction."

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WGAR: Working Group for Aboriginal Rights (Australia)