NACCHO Aboriginal Health #Redfernstatement Parliamentary Event @Congressmob Invite 14 February

redfern-statement

Background to the Redfern Statement

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55 leaders met today  9th of June 2016, in Redfern where in 1992 Prime Minister Paul Keating spoke truth about this nation – that the disadvantage faced by First Peoples affects and is the responsibility of all Australians.

Photo above NACCHO CEO Pat Turner addressing the national media

An urgent call for a more just approach to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs

“Social justice is what faces you in the morning. It is awakening in a house with adequate water supply, cooking facilities and sanitation. It is the ability to nourish your children and send them to school where their education not only equips them for employment but reinforces their knowledge and understanding of their cultural inheritance. It is the prospect of genuine employment and good health: a life of choices and opportunity, free from discrimination.”

Mick Dodson, Annual Report of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner, 1993.

The Redfern Statement

Download the 18 Page document here

Redfern Statement June 2016 Elections 18 Pages

Redfern Statement

A call for urgent Government action

 

NACCHO Aboriginal Health and Human Rights : Nomination open 2017 National Indigenous #HumanRights Awards

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 ” The National Indigenous Human Rights Awards recognises Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons who have made significant contribution to the advancement of human rights and social justice for their people.”

The awards were established in 2014, and will held annually. The inaugural awards were held at NSW Parliament House, and were welcomed by the Hon Linda Burney, MP and included key note speakers Dr Yalmay Yunupingu, Ms Gail Mabo, and Mr Anthony Mundine. A number of other distinguished guests such as political representatives, indigenous leaders and others in the fields of human rights and social justice also attended.

The Awards were presented by leading Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander elders, and leading Indigenous figures in Indigenous Social Justice and Human Rights. All recipients of the National Human Rights Award will be persons of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander heritage.

To nominate someone for one of the three awards, please go to https://shaoquett.wufoo.com/forms/z4qw7zc1i3yvw6/
 
For further information, please also check out the Awards Guide at https://www.scribd.com/document/336434563/2017-National-Indigenous-Human-Rights-Awards-Guide

AWARD CATEGORIES:

 

DR YUNUPINGU AWARD – FOR HUMAN RIGHTS
 
To an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person who has made a significant contribution to the advancement of Human Rights for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander peoples. Dr Yunupingu is the first Aboriginal from Arnhem Land to achieve a university degree. In 1986 Dr Yunupingu formed Yothu Yindi in 1986, combining Aboriginal (Yolngu) and non-Aboriginal (balanda) musicians and instrumentation.

In 1990 was appointed as Principal of Yirrkala Community School, Australia’s first Aboriginal Principal. Also in that year he established the Yothu Yindi Foundation to promote Yolngu cultural development, including Garma Festival of Traditional Cultures Dr Yumupingu was named 1992 Australian of the Year for his work in building bridges between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities across Australia.

THE EDDIE MABO AWARD FOR ACHIEVEMENTS IN SOCIAL JUSTICE

In memory of Eddie Koiki Mabo (1936-1992), this award recognises an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person who has made a significant contribution to the advancement of Social Justice for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Eddie Koiki Mabo was a Torres Straits Islander, most notable in Australian history for his role in campaigning for indigenous land rights.

From 1982 to 1991 Eddie campaigned for the rights of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders to have their land rights recognised. Sadly, he died of cancer at the age of 56, five months before the High Court handed down its landmark land rights decision overturning Terra Nullius. He was 56 when he passed away.

THE ANTHONY MUNDINE AWARD FOR COURAGE

 

To an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person who has made a significant contribution to the advancement of sports among Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Anthony Mundine is an Australian professional boxer and former rugby league player. He is a former, two-time WBA Super Middleweight Champion, a IBO Middleweight Champion, and an interim WBA Light Middleweight Champion boxer and a New South Wales State of Origin representative footballer. Before his move to boxing he was the highest paid player in the NRL.

In 2000 Anthony was named the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Person of the Year in 2000. He has also won the Deadly Award as Male Sportsperson of the Year in 2003, 2006 and 2007 amongst others.

He has a proud history of standing up for Indigenous peoples, telling a journalist from the Canberra Times: “I’m an Aboriginal man that speaks out and if I see something, I speak the truth.”

NACCHO Aboriginal Health News: @AMSANTaus and Redfern #ACCHO welcomes @KenWyattMP appointment

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Aboriginal medical services have proved the longevity of Aboriginal people, so we need the bigger spread and more Aboriginal medical services probably in the next 5-10 years.

We probably need another 100 to 150 Aboriginal medical services throughout the whole country, in cities and remote communities as well, so we’ll be pressuring Ken to make available more funds for the establishment of Aboriginal Medical Services.”

Sol Bellear AM, Chair  of the Aboriginal Medical Service in Redfern

It’s absolutely critical, we need people who understand our health and wellbeing and some of the important illnesses Aboriginal people get that say their non-Aboriginal counterparts don’t,

We have every confidence in Minister Wyatt, he has the experiences, the necessary qualifications, and the contacts and understanding, particularly with his expertise and knowledge having worked in Indigenous health in his past career.

He also knows a lot of leaders around the country and he knows where to get the correct information if he requires it, and we’re certainly willing, ready and able to help him if he requires it and calls upon us.”

AMSANT’S Executive Officer, John Paterson, explained it’s extremely important the minister for Indigenous Health is Indigenous.

The Aboriginal Medical Service in Redfern and the Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance of the Northern Territory are pleased to have Ken Wyatt as the new Minister for Aged Care and Indigenous Health, but have called for improvement.

Ken Wyatt was appointed yesterday as the Minister for Aged Care and Indigenous Health after a cabinet reshuffle brought about by the resignation of Susan Ley.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says Mr Wyatt’s previous experience as a bureaucrat within the Indigenous Health area makes him an ideal appointment to role.

Sol Bellear AM, Chair  of the Aboriginal Medical Service in Redfern, acknowledged Minister Wyatt’s long commitment to Indigenous health, but also recognised there is always room for improvement.

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VIEW recent NITV NACCHOTV interview with Sol Bellear

These comments from the Indigenous medical community have not been lost on the first ever Indigenous Federal Minister, who has already called for a new approach to addressing the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Mr Wyatt says it will take a whole of government approach to create lasting change.

Mr Wyatt  told the ABC:

“There’s this construct around Aboriginal health that is based on Aboriginal Community-controlled health services and organisations and specific programs that have been funded by the Commonwealth.

But if we’re truly serious, then what we should be doing is saying, ‘alright, how does the health sector, including all the ACCHOs then tackle this issue collectively to make sure that 800 thousand Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in this country have their health conditions improved?… the levels of, and prevalence rates of certain illnesses, tackled in a way that sees a reduction?”

AMSANT Lending a helping hand

AMSANT has been working on creating programs that tackle mental health issues, with a particular focus on intergenerational trauma.

Mr Paterson said he wants to meet with the minister as soon as possible, to present AMSANT’s research and get government support to start implementing the programs.

“We’ve done enough research, now it’s about implementation and action and that’s where we want to encourage governments,” he said.

“We have two experienced psychologists, one Indigenous psychologist, that have been working and looking at all different models overseas and internationally and we believe there are a couple of models that could be implemented in our Aboriginal communities here in our nation,” he said.

“There’s plenty of data and plenty of information, all we require is a willingness of governments and ministers to put the appropriate resources in that area.”

He added that tackling intergenerational trauma in communities could start to change the face of First Nations health entirely.

“You’ll see an increase in children’s attendance at school, their confidence, their general health and wellbeing, and you’ll see people having the confidence to approach issues that they may have been reserved or hesitant about in the past,” The Executive Officer said.

“This underlying trauma and stress that families have experienced because of whatever reasons you know – government policy back in the day, the stolen generation, the removal of kids, you know some families have never ever had some of those experiences treated,” he continued.

“And you can see it being played out now so we really need to focus and invest in some wrap around programs and the right counsellors and psychologists for those families and individuals that are experiencing this intergenerational trauma and stress.

“There is a way forward here and there is a process that can help tackle the underlying issues that many of us still face.”

Paterson said he also wants to talk to Minister Wyatt about ensuring specialist services are available in the NT, that Aboriginal Australians stop dying years earlier than their non-Aboriginal counterparts, and that preventative programs are implemented to tackle chronic diseases.

NACCHO #Health Press Release : #AIHW reveals the extent of the health crisis facing Aboriginal communities

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“In a wealthy country such as Australia, I am appalled by the unacceptable gap in the health of Aboriginal people and non-Aboriginal people.  More than one-third (37%) of the diseases or illness experienced by Aboriginal people are preventable.

“We need to act before another generation of young Aboriginal people have to live with avoidable diseases and die far too young.

If we are serious about turning this crisis around we need sustained investment in evidence-based programs for Aboriginal people, by Aboriginal people, through Aboriginal community controlled health services –  a model we know works.

Matthew Cooke Chair of NACCHO pictured above with Vice Chair Sandy Davies 

New figures show that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people experience ill health at more than double that of non-Indigenous Australians.

The peak Aboriginal health organisation, the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO) said the report highlights the urgent need for a rethink on actions to address the already known and growing crisis in Aboriginal health.

The report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) released today shows Aboriginal Australians experience a burden of disease at 2.3 times the rate of non-Indigenous Australians.

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Download the report aihw-australian-burden-of-disease-study

NACCHO Chair, Matthew Cooke, said it is the first ever in-depth study of the scale of disease in Indigenous communities.

See AIHW Press Release

“It’s given us a clearer picture of the real impact for Aboriginal communities of poor health in terms of years of health lives lost, quality of life and wellbeing and what the risks factors really are,” Mr Cooke said.

“It’s shown that we still have a massive challenge to address the overwhelming level of non-fatal burden in mental health in particular – which makes up 43 per cent of non-fatal illness in men and 35 per cent of these conditions in women.

The AIHW report found that injuries, including suicide, heart disease and cancer are the biggest causes of death in Aboriginal people. Levels of diabetes and kidney disease are five and seven times higher in Aboriginal people than non-Aboriginal people.

Mr Cooke said the report must trigger a rethink on how health programs are funded and delivered to Aboriginal people.

“The risk factors causing health problems include tobacco use, alcohol use, high body mass, physical inactivity, high blood pressure, high blood glucose and dietary factors – all of which can be addressed with the right programs on the ground and delivered by the right people.

“All levels of government should urgently act on this evidence; we need to see these findings translated into programs, policies and funding priorities that are proven to work. Too many programs aimed at addressing Aboriginal health are still fragmented, out of touch with local communities, unaffordable or inaccessible.

“If we are serious about turning this crisis around we need sustained investment in evidence-based programs for Aboriginal people, by Aboriginal people, through Aboriginal community controlled health services –  a model we know works.”

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NACCHO #RedfernStatement meeting outcomes : Minister and Indigenous Organisations Leadership Press Releases

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  1. We have a contribution to make and what we want from engagement is to co-design solutions with the Government in a collaborative and respectful way that recognises the values of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples”

Rod Little, Co-Chair of National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples.

“Today, I have listened closely to the views of a range of Indigenous leaders and acknowledged the significant areas where we share common ground,”

Minister Scullion see his full press Release below (2)

A number of leading Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Organisations met with Minister Scullion to forge a pathway for engagement and to demand that our solutions be co-designed

A number of leading Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Organisations met with Minister Scullion to forge a pathway for engagement and to demand that our solutions be co-designed

National Congress in collaboration with leading Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander representative organisations as signatories to the Redfern Statement 2016 met with the Indigenous Affairs Minister calling for the Government to urgently continue engagement with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Controlled Organisations and peoples to ensure the First Peoples of this country have a say about their future and future success of Australia.

It is critical that Australia’s First Peoples are properly represented at the national level to ensure meaningful engagement with government, industry and the non-government sectors to advance the priorities of our people.

“In the last generation we’ve had numerous seminal reports which have repeatedly emphasised that our people need to have a genuine say in our own lives and decisions that affect our peoples and communities. This has not been acted on. We are completely dissatisfied with the engagement to date”

This first step in responding to the Redfern Statement brought together a number of leading Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Controlled Organisations all calling for the development of mechanisms to ensure meaningful, genuine and regular engagement.

The meeting provided an opportunity to develop a greater degree of understanding and mutual appreciation of the complexity of the Indigenous Portfolio which requires a whole of government approach.

The next steps must include:

– A meeting between the Prime Minister and the leading signatories of the Redfern Statement;

– At least an annual National Summit with the Prime Minister and his cabinet to share knowledge between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Government representatives;

– A whole of Government approach to co-construct policies to ensure that our pathway forward is co-designed by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the Government; and

– A commitment from the Government to develop intergovernmental mechanisms to ensure First Peoples have a voice at the highest levels of Government to ensure the Government’s focus reflects our values and priorities.

“This Parliament has an unprecedented nation-building opportunity to meaningfully commit to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people determining what success looks like for them and for their communities” Mr Little concluded.

Strengthening engagement with Indigenous leaders -The Ministers Release

The Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Nigel Scullion, and the Co-Chairs of the National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples, Dr Jackie Huggins and Mr Rod Little, today hosted Indigenous leaders at a forum to work through issues raised in the Redfern Statement.

The forum with the 18 lead signatories of the Redfern Statement was an opportunity for all participants to engage with each other and the Minister in a spirit of goodwill to discuss ways to improve outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

“Today, I have listened closely to the views of a range of Indigenous leaders and acknowledged the significant areas where we share common ground,” Minister Scullion said.

“The forum continues the Turnbull Government’s approach of working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as part of a close engagement with communities to ensure policies and programmes deliver the best outcomes for our First Australians.

“I wish to thank the participants and everyone else who was involved in developing the Redfern Statement. I share the aspirations of the statement and look forward to working with today’s forum participants into the future to implement measures that will improve outcomes for our First Australians.

“We are investing $4.9 billion over four years in the Indigenous Affairs portfolio and I reaffirmed today my commitment to ensure every dollar in my portfolio delivers an outcome for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

“We are funding more Indigenous organisations than ever – with 55 per cent of funding under the Indigenous Advancement Strategy now being provided to Indigenous organisations.

“The forum was also a good opportunity to dispel some of the myths and false statements that have been circulated around the Indigenous Affairs portfolio.

“For example, claims that there had been a $500 million cut in the Indigenous Affairs portfolio are simply false and those making these statements know that the savings from Indigenous Affairs programmes were less than half that figure with significant funds reinvested in new initiatives like the successful Remote School Attendance Strategy.

“I committed to work with my colleagues in Commonwealth and state and territory governments to ensure programmes and activities across governments are delivering the outcomes that they should be.

“The Coalition Government is deeply committed to working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to bring about the changes necessary to deliver better outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.”

The Redfern Statement was issued by a number of Indigenous organisations during the 2016 election campaign and included a series of recommendations from these organisations in relation to policies and programmes impacting on First Australians.

Minister Scullion has been working with the Co-Chairs of Congress since he was re-appointed as Minister for Indigenous Affairs to organise today’s forum.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NACCHO #RedfernStatement meeting today : Indigenous Affairs Minister Scullion to face some of his most vocal and influential critics

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“We are looking forward to the workshop and a new narrative moving forward in the way that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs is negotiated,”

“We hope [the workshop] will bring some answers and some new direction, engagement and a new relationship.”

National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples co-chair Jackie Huggins 

Download Redfern Statement here

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“I would like to explore strategies to progress issues outlined in the Redfern Statement — and note there are significant areas in which it aligns with the Government’s Indigenous reform agenda,”

“I share the aspirations outlined in the Redfern Statement and see the workshop as an important step to bring about positive and sustainable change. We must connect through genuine dialogue, and I am looking forward to a continuing and constructive conversation.”

Indigenous Affairs Minister Nigel Scullion will face some of his most vocal and influential critics, when he holds a workshop with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders leaders on the Redfern Statement today reports Anna Henderson on the ABC

NACCHO Aboriginal Health News Alert : Major #Redfernstatement by leadership for #healthelection16

Picture above NACCHO CEO Pat Turner with some of the leaders meeting today

During the election campaign, 18 Indigenous groups, backed by prominent human rights, legal, health and education organisations, launched the Redfern Statement.

The lengthy document called for urgent action to reverse half a billion dollars in federal funding cuts and a review of the way federal funding is distributed.

It further made a case for the inclusion of a specific Closing the Gap target for reducing Indigenous imprisonment.

One of the most controversial proposals was to reverse the Abbott government decision to move the Department of Indigenous Affairs into the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

The statement calls for the department to be re-established and “managed and run by senior Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander public servants”.

The National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples spearheaded the Redfern Statement, which has suffered significant funding cuts under the Coalition and has had a rocky relationship with the Minister.

But the organisation’s co-chair Jackie Huggins is optimistic about today’s meeting and what it can achieve.

Don Dale triggers new approach

Dr Huggins said the scandal engulfing the Northern Territory youth detention system appeared to have contributed to the Minister’s new approach to the portfolio.

National Congress of Australia's First Peoples co-chair Jackie Huggins speaks.

A number of the positions in the Redfern Statement are at odds with current government policy, but Senator Scullion has stressed his interest in finding common ground.

Dr Huggins has agreed there is room for compromise on all fronts.

“There is room for negotiation tomorrow and into the future,” she said last night.

Senator Scullion released a statement announcing the workshop at the end of last month, and said it will “build on the Government’s reforms” and provide an opportunity for stronger ties with the signatories.

“I would like to explore strategies to progress issues outlined in the Redfern Statement — and note there are significant areas in which it aligns with the Government’s Indigenous reform agenda,” Minister Scullion said.

“I share the aspirations outlined in the Redfern Statement and see the workshop as an important step to bring about positive and sustainable change. We must connect through genuine dialogue, and I am looking forward to a continuing and constructive conversation.”

The National Congress is hoping the workshop will be followed by a meeting with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull directly.

Dr Huggins said she thought the Government and Indigenous groups were in agreement on about 80 per cent of the statement.

Statement calls for Indigenous-run portfolio

Dr Huggins said there was a strong case for Indigenous public servants to run a stand-alone portfolio.

“It’s not working at the moment and obviously there is a flaw in the system and we would say certainly, with people who are doing those jobs, in terms of the bureaucracy, in terms of really having the cultural capability to carry out the work that needs to be done, there’s a real bottleneck here,” she said.

“The best way to address it is to employ senior Aboriginal bureaucrats who can transcend the barriers, that know within their own communities what’s happening.”

Former prime minister Tony Abbott carried through an election promise to move Indigenous Affairs into the prime minister’s department.

Mr Abbott promoted Indigenous Affairs to be one of his top priorities and argued the departmental change would ensure the portfolio was given the prominence it deserved.

A number of Abbott government policy and budget decisions face criticism in the Redfern Statement