Saturday, June 23, 2007

Aboriginal Affairs

There will be a federal election in Australia around September this year. The media climate in Australia is very political as a result. On Friday the Prime Minister announced a radical plan to combat child abuse on Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory. The plan includes taking control of 60 Aboriginal communities, banning alcohol and pornography and compulsory medical examinations for all children under 16 years of age. The plan has ignited quite a debate and it is sure to continue if it come to be implemented. The report that is described as inspiring the Federal action is called Little Children are Precious and is available online HERE.
I feel the problems that will arise from such an approach will outweigh the present horrors. It would be better if those child protection services that are already in place should receive proper funding to deal with their backlog of cases. The community of Katherine in central Australia currently has one child protection Officer who is trained working with four Aboriginal assistants. How they are supposed to deal with the enormous range of problems is unknown. More background HERE.

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