Responding to the ALP’s Indigenous affairs policy platform announced this morning, Oxfam Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People’s Program Manager Justin McCaul said:
“Oxfam welcomes this comprehensive response by the ALP to the issues put forward in the Redfern Statement last week.
“Indigenous leaders and organisations came together a week ago to lay out in great detail the key areas that require an urgent, coordinated national response from government. This announcement from the ALP signals its willingness to meet this challenge.
“Oxfam is a founding member of the Close the Gap coalition, along with the many leading Indigenous organisations working to improve the life expectancy of Indigenous Australians.
“We hear the frustration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people at the lack of engagement with Indigenous leadership and the cuts to funding to address the ongoing shortfalls in health and education, as well as tackling issues such as the unacceptable rates of Indigenous incarceration.
“Oxfam has called for an overhaul of the maligned Indigenous Advancement Strategy and we welcome the ALP’s commitment to abolish this inadequate funding process for a more strategic and equitable funding mechanism that targets the real needs and priorities of Indigenous organisations.
“We welcome the promise to convene a national summit within the first 100 days government if Labor is elected on 2 July.
“The Coalition has not yet made any significant announcement in response to the calls from Indigenous leaders. The ball now sits in its court and Oxfam hopes for a similar response before the election.”
The ALP’s Indigenous affairs policy platform includes abolishing the Indigenous Advancement Strategy, a commitment to fund the National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples and an emphasis on funding Aboriginal community controlled organisations.
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