WGAR News: Police used to break blockade by Aboriginal women of Lake Tyers

Newsletter date: 26 Mar 2011

* Police used to break blockade by Aboriginal women of Lake Tyers
* Other Lake Tyers blockade articles
* Background to blockade by Aboriginal women of Lake Tyers
* Aboriginal groups protest against nuclear waste dump
* Background to Muckaty Station nuclear waste dump
* Churches hope that Australia will continue to urge the Australian Government to end Intervention
* More on Tony Abbott's call for new NT Intervention
* Background to Tony Abbott's call for new NT Intervention
* Other Northern Territory (NT) Intervention articles
* Background to the Northern Territory (NT) Intervention
* National Close the Gap Day - March 24


- News

Indymedia Australia: Police used to break picket at Lake Tyers
24 Mar 11: "The Age reported that police were used to escort the Administrator, Simon Wallace-Smith through the blockade established on the 8th of March by the women of Lake Tyers to protest the lack of community control in Lake Tyers. ... There is a benefit for the blockade this Friday in Melbourne. Leanne Edwards, spokesperson for the group told the ABC that the group plans to re-enact a march on Parliament House carried out by Aboriginal elders in 1963."

Age: Police bring officials through protest lines at Lake Tyers
23 Mar 11: "POLICE escorted Victorian officials through a blockade at East Gippsland's Lake Tyers settlement yesterday, where there is a dispute over the running of the settlement. Indigenous women imposed the blockade two weeks ago after the state government refused to rescind the appointment of an administrator. The administrator, Simon Wallace-Smith, who was appointed eight years ago, passed through the blockade early yesterday with other officials, driven in by police. A spokeswoman for the protesters, Leanne Edwards, said the women did not attempt to stop the officials."

7 News: Administrator breaches Aboriginal trust picket
22 Mar 11: "The Victorian Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Jeanette Powell, is still refusing to talk to Aboriginal people blockading the Lake Tyers Aboriginal settlement near Lakes Entrance. The protesters have been blockading the Aboriginal trust property for two weeks, calling for self-determination. The government-appointed administrator broke through the picket line early this morning with a police escort."


- Audio

Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association:
CAAMA Radio News 24-03-2011
24 Mar 11: "The solicitor representing the Lake Tyers Aborignal community says the Victorian Government is not willing to sit down and speak about legiitimate community concerns abour self governance."

ABC Gippsland: Minister stands firm on Lake Tyers protest
22 Mar 11: "Victorian Aboriginal Affairs Minister Jeanette Powell says she will not meet with protestors who have been blockading the entrance of the Lake Tyers Trust in East Gippsland for the past two weeks. The Minister told ABC Gippsland's Mornings Program she was not prepared to meet with aggrieved members of the Aboriginal community until the protest was called off and all staff, including the Trust's administrator was allowed in."

- News

The Native Press: Women Blockade Lake Tyers
22 Mar 11: "A group of Aboriginal women have blockaded the road to Lake Tyers Aboriginal Trust in East Gippsland in protest against current administration arrangements over the site. ... The women claim the current administration arrangements over Lake Tyers Aboriginal Trust are akin to a "Northern Territory-style intervention." Freehold title of the Lake Tyers settlement was transferred to Aboriginal people in 1970. But the women want more community involvement in the Lake Tyres Aboriginal Trust, which is administered by the Department of Justice and Aboriginal Affairs Victoria."

ABC: Lake Tyers protesters plan march for autonomy
21 Mar 11: "Protesters from the Lake Tyers Aboriginal Trust say they will re-enact a march on Parliament House carried out by Aboriginal elders in 1963. The protesters have maintained a blockade of the trust property near Lakes Entrance for two weeks, calling for self-determination. A spokeswoman for the group, Leanne Edwards, says residents are being dictated to by a government-appointed administrator. She says Aboriginal elders fought to have the trust property signed over to Indigenous people in 1970."

Intercontinental Cry:
Australia: Lake Tyers Women Holding Blockade Against the Government
21 Mar 11: "For the past two weeks, Indigenous women from the community of Lake Tyers, in East Gippsland, Victoria, have been holding a blockade against the state government's self-imposed rule over their community. The blockade officially went up on March 8, International Women's Day, in an effort to stop the government-appointed administrator ... and his staff from gaining entry to the community. For the past six years, Lake Tyers has been governed by a policy similar to the Northern Territory Intervention; a policy that, the Women say, is an insult to Elders and their own rights and aspirations as Indigenous Peoples."


WGAR News: Aboriginal women of Lake Tyers are staging a blockade (12 Mar 11)

WGAR News: More on the blockade by Aboriginal women of Lake Tyers (16 Mar 11)
[scroll down page] http://indymedia.org.au/2011/03/16/wgar-news-federal-court-challenge-ove...

WGAR News: Protest blockade by Lake Tyers Aboriginal women continues (21 Mar 11)

WGAR News: More on the blockade by Lake Tyers Aboriginal women (23 Mar 11)
[scroll down page] http://indymedia.org.au/2011/03/23/wgar-news-international-day-for-the-e...


- Audio

ABC PM: Aboriginal groups protest against radioactive waste dump
23 Mar 11: "The Senate today is preparing to pass controversial legislation allowing a national radioactive waste dump to be built on Aboriginal land in the Northern Territory. ...
Dianne Stokes says traditional owners are prepared to stop radioactive material being transported through their country.
DIANNE STOKES: Number one there's challenging, doing dancing on the country, marching the bridges, closing Tennant Creek for the waste dump to come through there. Past Three Ways, east of Three Ways no one is going to come through there. On railway, no one's going to come through there. No waste dump's coming through any of them land."


Beyond Nuclear Initiative’s weblog:

Beyond Nuclear Initiative:
Muckaty: http://beyondnuclearinitiative.wordpress.com/muckaty/

YouTube: Muckaty Voices

Proposed Radioactive Waste Dump at Muckaty, NT
Briefing Paper - February 2011
Jim Green B.Med.Sci.(Hons.), PhD
National nuclear campaigner - Friends of the Earth, Australia
Friends of the Earth: http://www.foe.org.au/anti-nuclear/issues/oz/nontdump/Dump%20briefing%20...

Nuclear Territory News: Waste Dump News:

WGAR News: Nuclear waste dump in the Northern Territory (2 Mar 10)

WGAR News: Muckaty Station Nuclear Waste Dump (20 Mar 10)

WGAR News: Nuclear Waste Dump (28 Mar 10)

WGAR News: Muckaty Radioactive Waste Dump (4 Apr 10)

WGAR News: National day of action against Muckaty nuclear waste dump: 12th April!

WGAR News: Nuclear Waste Dump: Senate inquiry in Darwin; Nationwide protests (17 Apr 10)

WGAR News: Update: Muckaty Station Nuclear Waste Dump (23 Apr 10)
[scroll down page] http://indymedia.org.au/2010/04/22/wgar-news-raw-sewage-dumped-in-ampila...

WGAR News: Update on Muckaty Station Nuclear Waste Dump (2 May 10)

WGAR News: "Muckaty Voices" film; Senate Report into nuclear waste dump plan (16 May 10)

WGAR News: Federal Court legal challenge over nuclear waste dump (13 Jun 10)

WGAR News: PM Gillard: No change on Muckaty nuclear waste dump (12 Jul 10)

WGAR News: Legislation passes enabling a nuclear waste dump to be built at Muckaty, NT (1 Mar 11)

WGAR News: Federal Court challenge over nuclear dump resumes in August (16 Mar 11)

WGAR News: Interview with Kylie Sambo, Mark Lane and Dr. Jim Green about Muckaty nuclear waste dump (21 Mar 11)
[scroll down page] http://indymedia.org.au/2011/03/21/wgar-news-protest-blockade-by-lake-ty...

WGAR News: Nuclear waste legislation must wait until objections heard in Federal Court (23 Mar 11)
[scroll down page] http://indymedia.org.au/2011/03/23/wgar-news-international-day-for-the-e...


- Media Release

National Council of Churches in Australia:
WCC Voices Concern Over Plight of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People
24 Mar 11: "The World Council of Churches (WCC) has voiced its concern about the plight of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples at its recent Central Committee meeting in Geneva.
The WCC statement follows on from a visit to the Northern Territory by a WCC “Living Letters” Team which visited several Aboriginal communities and heard stories and experiences of the Intervention. The Living Letters team expressed concern about the discrimination, oppression and racism they observed and which many Aboriginal people experience on a daily basis. ...
The Reverend. Tara Curlewis, General Secretary of the National Council of Churches in Australia (NCCA) and an advisor for the WCC Central Committee said "This statement is very significant as it is in response to the Living Letters visit to Northern Territory communities. Members of the WCC Central Committee were shocked to hear what has happened in Australia in recent years. One leader said 'Surely this isn't happening in Australia? I thought Australia was better than this!'"
Last week the NCCA Executive welcomed the WCC report and statement, the churches hope that Australia will adhere to the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and continue to urge the Australian Government to end the Intervention."

See full statement:
World Council of Churches: Statement on the Situation of Indigenous Peoples of Australia
22 Feb 11: "The WCC Central Committee, meeting in Geneva 16-22 February, 2011, therefore: ...
Urges the Australian government to end the “Intervention” and instead to engage in proper consultation and negotiation processes which are genuinely inclusive of Aboriginal Peoples, which will better empower and enable them to identify their own aspirations, issues of concern and which will involve their full participation in creating and implementing solutions; ... "

- News

Anglican Media Melbourne: World Council of Churches condemns NT’s indigenous “Intervention”
24 Mar 11: "The World Council of Churches (WCC) has issued a strong statement condemning many aspects of the Australian federal government’s “Intervention” into indigenous communities in the Northern Territory, which began in 2007 under the Coalition and continues today under the Labor government. In 2010, the WCC sent a “Living Letters” team to Australia to visit indigenous communities and gather their experiences of the Intervention. On their return, they reported discrimination, oppression and racism towards indigenous Australians on a daily basis." Jane Still


- Statement

AIA: Amnesty International claims proposed ‘new intervention’ doomed to fail
23 Mar 11: "Amnesty International has expressed dismay at Opposition Leader Tony Abbott’s calls for a ‘new intervention’ in the Northern Territory, warning against the imposition of another round of blunt policies doomed to fail. ...
Since the roll out of the Northern Territory Emergency Response in 2007, Amnesty International has criticised successive governments for a lack of meaningful consultation with Indigenous communities and the blanket implementation of a raft of racially discriminatory measures.
“It’s unbelievable to me that the intervention - a racially discriminatory policy that has ultimately humiliated and disempowered thousands of Aboriginal people in the Territory - is being trumpeted as a success by the Opposition Leader,” said Rodney Dillon, Indigenous Rights Campaigner, Amnesty International Australia."

- Audio

Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association:
CAAMA Radio News 24-03-2011
24 Mar 11: "The Minister for Central Australia Karl Hampton says that if the Federal Opposition leader Tony Abbott wants to know what is happening in Alice Springs he should come to town and talk with local people about local issues."

- News

Age: PM tells Abbott to butt out of NT trip
25 Mar 11: "OPPOSITION Leader Tony Abbott has been told he is not welcome to travel to the Northern Territory with the Prime Minister to tackle Aboriginal welfare during a private meeting with Julia Gillard. ... A spokesman for Ms Gillard said: ''The Prime Minister will travel with her minister, who has been working closely on this matter for several years, rather than with Mr Abbott.''"

Australian: Joint trip to Alice rejected by Julia Gillard
25 Mar 11: "JULIA Gillard has rejected Tony Abbott's offer of a joint trip to trouble-ridden Alice Springs in a late afternoon meeting with him yesterday, telling the Opposition Leader the government would stick with its current approach to solving the crisis. The Prime Minister said she would instead travel to Alice Springs with Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin."

Australian: Abbott, PM must visit together, says Aboriginal activist
24 Mar 11: "ABORIGINAL and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner Mick Gooda has appealed to the Prime Minister to travel to Alice Springs with Tony Abbott, arguing that the bipartisan approach to indigenous affairs must not splinter and new solutions must be found to growing dysfunction in Alice Springs. Mr Gooda told The Australian he believed Mr Abbott's letter asking Julia Gillard to go to Alice Springs with him was sincere and necessary -- and only if they travelled together would indigenous disadvantage be addressed."


WGAR News: Opposition leader, Tony Abbott, calls for new Northern Territory (NT) Intervention (23 Mar 11)
[scroll down page] http://indymedia.org.au/2011/03/23/wgar-news-international-day-for-the-e...


- News

7 News: Welfare Management 'Discriminatory': Gooda
10 Mar 11: "The Gillard government's policy of income managing people on welfare is likely to be challenged on the grounds it discriminates against indigenous people, an Aboriginal leader says. Social justice commissioner Mick Gooda thinks the practice of quarantining half the welfare cheques of all vulnerable people in the Northern Territory arguably affects indigenous people more than others. ... Government officials told a budget estimates hearing in late February that 94 per cent of the nearly 16,000 people being income-managed in the NT are indigenous."


Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
Northern Territory National Emergency Response: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northern_Territory_intervention

STICS (Stop the Intervention Collective Sydney): http://stoptheintervention.org/

IRAG (Intervention Rollback Action Group): http://rollbacktheintervention.wordpress.com/

Melbourne Anti-Intervention Collective: http://maicollective.blogspot.com/

ANTaR (Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation) - NT intervention: http://www.antar.org.au/issues_and_campaigns/nt_intervention

'concerned Australians': http://www.concernedaustralians.com.au/

Jobs with Justice: http://jobswithjustice.wordpress.com/

Defending Indigenous Rights: http://defendingindigenousrights.wordpress.com/

Intervention walk-off's Blog: http://interventionwalkoff.wordpress.com/

WGAR (Working Group for Aboriginal Rights): http://wgar.info/


- Media Releases

Australian Human Rights Commission:
Growing number of Australians support National Close the Gap Day this year
23 Mar 11: "Tens of thousands of Australians are set to pledge their support for closing the 10 – 17 year Indigenous life expectancy gap in events around the country as part of National Close the Gap Day tomorrow (Thursday March 24).
More than 850 National Close the Gap Day events have been registered in schools, workplaces and other community venues across all states and territories in an unprecedented show of support for the campaign. This is almost a 50 per cent increase in the number of events registered last year.
Co-chair of the Close the Gap Campaign Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner Mick Gooda said people power was crucial to achieving Indigenous life expectancy equality within a generation."

ANTaR - Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation:
People power must persist for Gap to Close
24 Mar 11: "The National Director of ANTaR, Jacqueline Phillips, says the large gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians in life expectancy and life opportunities will only close if the public pressure on politicians persists for many more years.
Speaking on the eve of National Close the Gap day, Ms Phillips said "the progress that has been made in the five years since the grass-roots campaign for health equality was launched shows people can make a real difference in positively influencing the political agenda."
"The Close the Gap campaign has also shown that there are many successful programs designed and run by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people that can produce positive results if they are given reliable, adequate support.""

Rachel Siewert: National Close the Gap Day sends powerful message
24 Mar 11: "Australian Greens Senator Rachel Siewert says the growing number of Australians paying recognition National Close the Gap Day sends an inspiring message that improving life expectancy and health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are national priorities.
“It is exciting to see community support for National Close the Gap Day strengthening each year,” Senator Siewert, Australian Greens spokesperson for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Issues said today. “This growing support is an inspiration for those people working tirelessly, often without recognition towards improved health outcomes.
“National Close the Gap Day and the ongoing Close the Gap community campaign send a unified message which strengthens support for measures which improve the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people,” said Senator Siewert."

- Audio

The Wire: Closing the Gap Day
24 Mar 11: "Across the country today almost 900 events are being held to raise awareness of the gap in life expectancy that still exists between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians. But how far have we got to go after five years of campaigning? Jacqueline Phillips - National Director of Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation, Nigel Scullion - Shadow Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Selwyn Button - CEO of Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council"

- News

Koori Mail: 'People power' needed to close gap
[scroll down page] http://www.koorimail.com/index.php
24 Mar 11: "TENS of thousands of Australians are expected to take part in a record 850 Close the Gap Day events around the country today, pledging their support for closing the 10-17 year Indigenous life expectancy gap. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner Mick Gooda says such 'people power' will be crucial to achieving Indigenous life expectancy equality within a generation."

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WGAR: Working Group for Aboriginal Rights (Australia)
WGAR Website: http://wgar.info/