Newsletter date: 11 May 2012
* Quakers in Australia support Yolngu Nations Assembly rejection of Stronger Futures Bills
* Josephite SA Reconciliation Circle in support of Yolgnu Nations Statement
* CRA: Catholic Religious support the Yolngu Nations Statement
* Women for Wik respectfully support the Yolgnu Elders' Statement
* STICS: From the bush to Bankstown - communities prepare to fight 'Stronger Futures' implementation
* Presentation Sisters Victoria - Letter to the Hon. Jenny Macklin
* Public Statement protesting against the Stronger Futures Bills
* WFFR: Stronger Futures (SF) legislation is 'No Future'
* Amy McQuire: Sydney Launch of NT Consultations Report 2011
* UnitingJustice: Uniting Church calls on Senators not to pass Stronger Futures legislation
* Josephites urge Senate to reject Stronger Futures Bill?
* Michael Brull: Shameful second intervention slips under the radar
* Rachel Siewert: Greens set for debate on NT Intervention expansion
* More 'Stronger Futures' Legislation related articles
* Background to 'Stronger Futures' new NT Intervention laws
* Background to the Northern Territory (NT) Intervention
* Sovereign Union: Police and state allow drug trafficking into Aboriginal communities
* Walmadan Tent Embassy, north of Broome, WA
* Background to the Aboriginal sovereignty movement
WGAR News: Several organisations express support for the Yolngu Nations Assembly Statement (10 May 12)
'concerned Australians' compilation:
Churches, Religious, Organisations and Reconciliation Groups
"Calls to Abandon the Stronger Futures Legislation, and Calls to Support the Yolngu Nations Assembly Statement"
Respect and Listen compilation:
"Statements and Media Releases ... calling to abandon the Stronger Futures Legislation and supporting the Yolŋu Nations Assembly Statement"
WGAR News: Yolngu Nations Assembly Statement concerning 'Stronger Futures' laws and NT policies (4 May 12)
* QUAKERS IN AUSTRLIA SUPPORT YOLNGU NATIONS ASSEMBLY REJECTION OF STRONGER FUTURES BILLS:
- Media Release
Quakers Australia: Quakers in Australia support Yolŋu Nations Assembly rejection of Stronger Futures Bills
'concerned Australians': http://concernedaustralians.com.au/media/stronger_futures_yolngu/Quakers...
2 May 12: "Members of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) in Australia support the Statement made by Yolŋu Nations Assembly (see attachment) to the Australian Federal and Northern Territory Parliaments calling on the Senate to discard the Stronger Futures Bills in full.
We also endorse the call made by Yolŋu Nations Assembly for the Federal and Northern Territory Governments to 'end their interventionist policies and agendas, and return to a mindset of partnership based on the principles of selfdetermination'."
* JOSEPHITE SA RECONCILIATION CIRCLE IN SUPPORT OF YOLGNU NATIONS STATEMENT:
Josephite SA Reconciliation Circle In Support Of Yolgnu Nations Statement
'concerned Australians': http://concernedaustralians.com.au/media/stronger_futures_yolngu/Josephi...
3 May 12: "The Josephite SA Reconciliation Circle, together with our mentor, Kaurna Elder Dr Alitya Rigney join our voices with those of the Yolgnu Nations Assembly who released their Statement yesterday, May 2, 2012. Together with the Assembly, we 'reject the Stronger Futures Bill (and those associated) and call on the Senate to discard these Bills in full.'
Since the inception of the Intervention into the NT in 2007, our Circle has campaigned against this disempowering legislation. Now, in support of the Yolngu Nations, we once again call on both Federal and NT Governments to work with Aboriginal communities rather than impose their own decisions.
Many of our members have a teaching background so realise the effectiveness of children learning in their own language. Together with the Yolgnu Nations, we therefore also call 'for an end to the Northern Territory Government’s Compulsory Teaching in English for the First Four Hours of Each Day policy.' ... "
Background to the use of Aboriginal languages in NT schools
Last updated: 7 May 2012
* CRA: CATHOLIC RELIGIOUS SUPPORT THE YOLNGU NATIONS STATEMENT
Catholic Religious Australia (CRA): Catholic Religious support the Yolŋu Nations Statement
'concerned Australians': http://concernedaustralians.com.au/media/stronger_futures_yolngu/Catholi...
6 May 12: "Catholic Religious Australia acknowledges with respect and fully supports the Yolŋu Nations Statement.
Catholic Religious Australia supports the Yolŋu Nations' call to reject the legislation of the 'Stronger Futures Northern Territory 2011 Bills'.
"We have joined with the many Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and other Australians who have often spoken about the need to consult Aboriginal people and their Elders in the planning of actions and recommendations that will affect their lives rather than legislating and imposing obligations and rules."
Catholic Religious Australia urges the Federal Government and the Northern Territory Government to listen to the Yolŋu Nations and their requests to abandon this legislation, to honour the legitimate role of the Land Councils and to end interventionist policies.
The Yolŋu Nations clearly state that the way forward is through partnership based on the principles of Self-determination."
* WOMEN FOR WIK RESPECTFULLY SUPPORT THE YOLGNU ELDERS' STATEMENT:
Women for Wik respectfully support the Yolgnu Elders' Statement
STICS: [scroll down page] http://stoptheintervention.org/facts/stronger-futures-legislation/yolngu...
11 May 12: "Women for Wik respectfully support the Yolgnu Elders' Statement in their determined opposition to The Stronger Futures Legislation.
This legislation will undermine the human rights of Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory until 2022 - and will renew and even expand some of the harshest measures under the Howard Government's' Northern Territory Emergency Response for ten more years according to ANTar.
We join an increasing number of national organisations and concerned individuals supporting this important Statement."
* STICS: FROM THE BUSH TO BANKSTOWN - COMMUNITIES PREPARE TO FIGHT 'STRONGER FUTURES' IMPLEMENTATION
- Media Release
Stop the Intervention Collective Sydney:
From the bush to Bankstown - communities prepare to fight 'Stronger Futures' implementation
Green Left: http://www.greenleft.org.au/node/50971
9 May 12: "Remote NT communities are joining with the south-western Sydney suburb of Bankstown in a pledge to challenge the implementation of 'Stronger Futures' legislation which is set to be debated in the Senate today. ...
In an historic statement from Arnhem Land last week, Yolŋu Elders pledged to refuse to negotiate any leases, including mining exploration leases, while the government pushed ahead with 'Stronger Futures'. ...
Mathew Dhulumburrk, a Gupapuyngu Elder from Ramingining, was part of the Yolŋu Makarr Dhuni, (Yolŋu Nations Assembly) which issued the statement against Stronger Futures last week:
"We do not want another decade of discrimination here at Ramingining. After five years, it feels like the water level has climbed up to our neck. Another ten years will bring it way over our heads. The government is drowning us slowly and wonders why twice as many of our young people are attempting suicide. There is no valid reason to discriminate against Yolŋu in this way."
"We put out a statement last week and we stand by that. We will not be co-operating with the government when they try and bring in Stronger Futures. We will not sign any leases over our land. We want to determine our own future and run our own communities. We need laws and support that will let us do that", concluded Mr Dhulumburrk."
* PRESENTATION SISTERS VICTORIA - LETTER TO THE HON. JENNY MACKLIN:
Presentation Sisters Victoria - Letter to the Hon. Jenny Macklin
'concerned Australians': http://concernedaustralians.com.au/media/stronger_futures_yolngu/Present...
2 May 12: "Dear Ms Macklin, ...
We urge you to listen to the voices of the peoples of the 8 nations in the Western, Central and East Arnhem Land at Yolngu Nations Assembly to "end their interventionist policies and agendas, and return to a mindset of partnership based on the principles of Self-Determination". ... "
* PUBLIC STATEMENT PROTESTING AGAINST THE STRONGER FUTURES BILLS:
Hon Robyn Layton AO QC, Prof. Peter Buckskin PSM FACE, Dr Irene Watson, Dr Lester-Irabinna Rigney PhD, MACE:
Public Statement protesting against the Stronger Futures Bills
'concerned Australians': http://concernedaustralians.com.au/media/stronger_futures_yolngu/Robyn_L...
3 May 12: "We sign this Public Statement to express our strongest support for the Abiriginal Yolgnu Nations Assembly representing some 8,000 Aboriginal people in west, central and east Arnhem Land who oppose the passage of these Bills in the Senate. ...
We support the Yolgnu Nations in their call on " both the Australian Federal and Northern Territory Governments to end their interventions policies and agendas, and return to a mindset of partnership based on Self-Determination"."
* WFFR: STRONGER FUTURES (SF) LEGISLATION IS 'NO FUTURE'
- Media Release
Whitehorse Friends For Reconciliation Inc. (WFFR):
Stronger Futures (SF) legislation is 'No Future'
'concerned Australians': http://concernedaustralians.com.au/media/stronger_futures_yolngu/White_H...
4 May 12: "'Stronger' call by Northern Aboriginal Elders to discard Stronger Futures legislation package
Whitehorse Friends for Reconciliation is one of many small community groups which regularly gather to discuss ways of enhancing reconciliation and respectful relationships between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Australians. We work through local community awareness-raising, and through lobbying members of all parliaments, both state and federal. ...
Whitehorse Friends for Reconciliation (WFFR) acknowledges the Yolŋu Nations Assembly in their struggle, and supports their statement, ...
WFFR asks the Government also to honour their commitment to the UNDRIP and human rights principles.
The legislation is due to be debated in the senate in May. We call on the leaders of our country and each Senator to personally read the Makarr Dhunni (Yolŋu Nations Assembly) statement, ... "
* AMY McQUIRE: SYDNEY LAUNCH OF NT CONSULTATIONS REPORT 2011
- Sydney launch
Respect and Listen:
"NT Consultations Report 2011: By Quotations"
was launched by
Graeme Mundine, Executive Officer, ACM Sydney Archdiocese ...
and Amy McQuire, Editor, Tracker Magazine
please click here for her speech
Published by 'concerned Australians' February 2012 http://www.concernedaustralians.com.au/#NTCR2011 "
Amy McQuire: Sydney Launch of NT Consultations Report 2011
"Thank you all for being here, and thanks to 'concerned Australians', for inviting me to help launch this book. Before I get into anything else, I want to stress how incredibly important the NT Consultations Report 2011 is. It harnesses the voices of the previously unheard, and the presently ignored. ... What I’ve found while reading through its glossy pages, is an overwhelming theme running through each comment - that we need control back in our hands, that we haven’t been properly consulted, and if we have, than we haven’t been listened to, and that overwhelmingly
the promises - for new houses, for better education, for safer communities, have been broken. ... "
For the order form: http://www.respectandlisten.org/uploads/downloads/ca/NTCR2011_Order_Form...
For a book review: http://www.respectandlisten.org/uploads/downloads/ca/NTCR-Book-review.pdf
* UNITINGJUSTICE: UNITING CHURCH CALLS ON SENATORS NOT TO PASS STRONGER FUTURES LEGISLATION
UnitingJustice Australia: Uniting Church calls on Senators not to pass Stronger Futures legislation
9 May 12: "The Uniting Church's justice unit UnitingJustice Australia has written to Senators urging them to reject the Stronger Futures legislation scheduled for debate in the Senate today. National Director of UnitingJustice Rev. Elenie Poulos expressed her concern that the legislation, which renews and extends conditions of the NT Intervention, is being pushed through 'under the radar' in Budget Week without adequate consultation with Indigenous people."
* JOSEPHITES URGE SENATE TO REJECT STRONGER FUTURES BILL?:
- Media Release
Leaders of the Congregations and Provinces of the Sisters of St Joseph, Australia:
Josephites urge Senate to reject Stronger Futures Bill?
'concerned Australians': http://concernedaustralians.com.au/media/stronger_futures_yolngu/Sisters...
2 May 12: "The Sisters of St Joseph throughout Australia are urging Senators to reject the Stronger Futures legislation when it comes before the Senate in Early May.
Josephites continue to question the government’s proposed expansion of compulsory income management, its punitive welfare policy, and particularly the new proposal (SEAM), which aims to increase school attendance by tying welfare payments to days that students are present at school.
Speaking as a Leader of the Sisters of St Joseph right across Australia, Sr Anne Derwin echoed the ongoing disappointment of many Australians.
'This latest bill reminds us once again of all our concerns about the previous legislation. ... ' Sr Anne said."
* MICHAEL BRULL: SHAMEFUL SECOND INTERVENTION SLIPS UNDER THE RADAR
- Analysis / Opinion
ABC Drum Opinion: Shameful second intervention slips under the radar
10 May 12: "Right now, Australian political commentary is focussed on the budget. For a while, it will be the major topic of the day for journalists and the media. In the midst of all this, it appears that something awful is going to slip under the radar. That is, the second intervention. A raft of the so-called Stronger Futures bills is going to be debated in the Senate. The Coalition and Labor support intervention two. The Greens have valiantly struggled against the intervention, to little avail. And when these laws pass, it will mean 10 more years of intervention." Michael Brull, is studying a Juris Doctor at UNSW and is involved in Stop The Intervention Collective Sydney (STICS)
* RACHEL SIEWERT: GREENS SET FOR DEBATE ON NT INTERVENTION EXPANSION:
- Media Release
Rachel Siewert: Greens set for debate on NT Intervention expansion
9 May 12: "The Australian Greens will today vote 'No' if the Government brings on the Strong Futures Legislation in the Senate to extend and expand the NT Intervention.
"If the Government and Coalition continue to support the Intervention, the Greens will then propose a range of amendments to the flawed legislation," Senator Rachel Siewert, spokesperson on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Issues said today.
"People in the NT are facing the prospect of 10 more years of the intervention.
"The Greens have taken a strong and consistent stance against the Intervention since it was introduced under the Howard Government. Since then, the ALP Government has continued it and is now expanding it.
"We strongly oppose this legislation, but I am not going to sit back and watch the Government and Coalition rush this through the Senate without trying to limit the harm it will cause.
"The Greens amendments address some of the most significant areas of concern. ... "
* MORE 'STRONGER FUTURES' LEGISLATION RELATED ARTICLES:
- Analysis / Opinion
Northern Rivers Echo: Red tape binding the vulnerable
10 May 12: "An aspect of the intervention that has proven to be one of the most controversial is income management, an anodyne term for quarantining 50-100% of Centrelink payments, insuring that they are spent on essentials such as housing, food and clothing, and not on alcohol, gambling and pornography. Another stated goal is to protect vulnerable people from financial exploitation. While the response has sometimes been mixed, opposition from many of those forcibly enrolled into the program shows no sign of dissipating." Martin Oliver, a freelance journalist with an interest in social justice
Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association:
CAAMA Radio Online News 10.05.2012
10 May 12: "* The Gillard Labor Government has committed more than 3. Billion dollars over 10 years towards implementing Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory as part of a 5.2 billion dollar national package to help close the gap nationally on Aboriginal disadvantage.
* The Australian Greens say they will vote 'No' if the Government brings on the Strong Futures Legislation in the Senate to extend and expand the NT Intervention."
National Indigenous Radio Service: Elders have had their rights taken away: Assembly
10 May 12: "Spokesperson [for the Yolgnu Nations Assembly] Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra says Stronger Futures is worse than the Howard Government's Emergency Response strategy and the key to formulating positive policy in the Territory is consultation. "I emphasise two things that hurt the most. "Just out of the blue, we were told that the special measure will extend for another 10 years and no negotiation, no dialogue. "Number two was that the Minister [for Indigenous Affairs Jenny Macklin] will take most of the measures under her control. "It's taking away the power, the authority, the right from the elders of our eight nations.""
Stronger Futures debate resumes in Senate
Herald Sun: http://www.heraldsun.com.au/ipad/senate-debates-nt-intervention/story-fn...
10 May 12: "THE Labor Federal Government dropped the ball on the Northern Territory intervention program in Aboriginal communities, the Senate has heard. Debate on the Government's Stronger Futures laws resumed in the Senate yesterday. ... Last week, a group of traditional owners, the Yolngu Nations Assembly which represents 8000 people in west, central and east Arnhem Land, threatened to revolt against the legislation. ... The Australian Greens have signalled they will oppose the bills."
SBS World News: NT-style income curbs rile Sydney groups
9 May 12: "The Stronger Futures laws, to continue the Howard government's NT intervention, may meet resistance in Sydney's southwest as well as the NT. The federal government could face resistance to its income management policy from people in Sydney as well as remote Northern Territory Aboriginal communities. The government's Stronger Futures laws, designed to carry on the Howard government's NT intervention, are expected to pass the parliament with bipartisan support."
* BACKGROUND TO 'STRONGER FUTURES' NEW NT INTERVENTION LAWS:
Last updated: 10 May 2012
* BACKGROUND TO THE NORTHERN TERRITORY (NT) INTERVENTION:
Last updated: 29 April 2012
* SOVEREIGN UNION: POLICE AND STATE ALLOW DRUG TRAFFICKING INTO ABORIGINAL COMMUNITIES
- Media Release
Sovereign Union: Police and state allow drug trafficking into Aboriginal communities
10 May 12: "Michael Anderson, interim spokesperson for 'Sovereign Union' states in a Media Release that is very clear that the drug traffickers are vigorously targeting Aboriginal communities in various parts of Australia, and there is a lack of real interest by the state police. Instead of rigorous police investigations many communities find that the police are targeting and harassing them instead of the perpetrators.
Mr Anderson said that police and state officials appear to be only too happy that Aboriginal communities are being targeted by the drug trade in order to maintain the impression that our communities are totally dysfunctional and therefore need intervention of one type or another. It is difficult for the community members to understand why police appear to take no action when names and addresses are given of those trafficking drugs into the communities."
* WALMADAN TENT EMBASSY, NORTH OF BROOME, WA:
Walmadan Tent Embassy (James Price Point)
Sovereign Union: http://nationalunitygovernment.org/content/walmadan-tent-embassy-james-p...
"On the 14th September, 2011, Kimberley Traditional Owners launched a Tent Embassy at Walmadan (James Price Point), 60 klms north of Broome WA. In an early morning ceremony Joseph Roe lit the fire with ash sent from the fire of the Canberra Aboriginal Tent Embassy, where their fire has been burning for 40 years. In a statement read by Dr Anne Poelina, Michael Anderson from the original Tent Embassy said "It is an absolute joy to know that the people of the Kimberley are now making your statement loud and clear"."
Facebook: Goolarabooloo and Lurujarri Heritage Trail
* BACKGROUND TO THE ABORIGINAL SOVEREIGNTY MOVEMENT:
Last updated: 10 May 2012
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