Friday, January 28, 2005

The way the world works: Abbott

Abbott rejects Indigenous health funding appeal?

Federal fascist Health Minister Tony Abbott has rejected a call by the Australian Medical Association (AMA) for a doubling in funding for Indigenous health.

A Productivity Commission report out today paints a bleak picture for Aboriginal Australians. The report says Aboriginal Australians are more likely to drop out of school, go to jail, smoke and live in poverty.

And I might add, more likely to end up in jail or die in custody? Bleak indeed! And I'm sure that the Indigenous people could add a lot more to that list of problems in their sometimes isolated communities.

Abbott says there will be an increase in funding in the next Budget, but he says the Government cannot double its contribution.

"I don't think it's realistic to suddenly more than double Indigenous health spending and think that you are suddenly going to get results which are twice as good," he said.

"I just don't think the world works that way."

But what if doubling the Indigenous health spending makes indigenous people equal to non-indigenous people? That means you were ripping them off! Is that really how the world works?

The West Australian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation said the major parties in WA need to focus on the continuing problem of chronic diseases in Indigenous communities.

How the world works for Indigenous people Mr Abbott?

The organisation said it has had to cancel vital research projects because its state funding has been cut by almost $500,000.

Spokeswoman Vanessa Davies says the organisation wants a pledge that adequate funds will be restored.

"What happens is that some of the priorities and strategic directions for Aboriginal health fall along the wayside - there's no mechanism there or limited mechanism for all of the AMSs to get together to be speaking with Government about setting and establishing those sorts of priorities," she said.

By Sorry 28 January 05


Hill primed for war!
Australian Caretaker Defence Minister Robert Hill has announced a multi-million dollar upgrade of the Pearce Air Force base in Western Australia. Hill says $87 million would be spent on a major upgrade of the base, which is Australia's main flying training facility.

Defence people need to vote for the Greens
Caretaker Prime Minister John Howard will today unveil a plan to step up the fight against terrorism in the region, using specialist teams of Australian Federal Police (AFP) that could be sent to work in neighbouring countries.

Auditor Generals damning defence report
The Defence Department computer system upgrade has cost Australia tens of millions of dollars in a gigantic bungle, according to the Federal Opposition. The Commonwealth auditor-general has issued a damning report into the project.

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Deploying an extra 30 troops to Iraq was not a deepening of Australia's involvement because they were being sent to protect those already there, Defence Minister Robert Hill said yesterday.

Indonesian Election: Australia $48 Million?
Australian Payoff Call to Arms Bali Bombing Indonesia? Stated as a given for an anti-terrorism initiative? But it could have just as easily have been a payment for the Bali Bombings - 1012 Call to Arms.

Is that how the world really works?


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A national reconciliation group says the federal Government's main-streaming of Indigenous services into government departments will continue to isolate Aboriginal public servants.

Vanstone defends asking Aborigines to wash for fuel
The Federal Government has defended its offer to provide a remote Indigenous community with petrol bowsers and new health programs, if it meets conditions including ensuring children shower every day.

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Aboriginal leader Geoff Clark says he gatecrashed a meeting of federal and state Aboriginal affairs ministers today to highlight the plight of Aboriginal people.

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Michael Long has emerged from a meeting with the Prime Minister in Canberra saying it is still the beginning of his journey.

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A spokesman for the Palm Island community in north Queensland says the funeral for a man who died in police custody may be another two weeks away.

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The Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission (HREOC) has issued a warning about the Federal Government's plan to link Aboriginal welfare to behavioural change.

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The Federal Government says it is still considering a radical plan to rebuild the Aboriginal welfare system, which could make financial assistance dependent on behavioural change?

UN rates Indigenous health poorly
The Australian Nursing Federation says the United Nations has rated Indigenous Australians as having the second worst quality of life in the world after China.

Poverty cycle must be addressed: Ridgeway
The Democrats' Aden Ridgeway says Prime Minister John Howard should stop beating up on people who are on welfare, and focus on solving the national Indigenous unemployment rate.

Whitewash over Hickey's death
The New South Wales coroner has cleared police of any responsibility for the death of Aboriginal teenager Thomas 'TJ' Hickey.

1. ATSIC abolition: the story so far. The last few months have seen both major parties buying into Indigenous Affairs in destructive and politically opportunistic ways. First the ALP and then the Government announced they would abolish ATSIC, but now the decision has been referred to a Senate Committee so the full implications of the Government's proposal can be examined. For more information on the Senate Inquiry into Indigenous Administration call 02 6277 3419 or go to:

AMA calls for extra health funding for Aborigines
The Australian Medical Association (AMA) is asking for an extra $450 million a year to be spent on the health needs of Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders.

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Reconciliation dreaming
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Amnesty sees lack of progress on reconciliation
Amnesty International says the Federal Government must be held accountable for its commitments to Indigenous services.

The bone has been pointed at Howard
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Indigenous Social Justice Association Djadi Dugarang

Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research: Aboriginal Crime
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