In reply to “Greens” (Posted November 16, 2012 at 9:12 …

Comment on Country Liberals: Resolve takes the place of frustration by Bob Durnan.

In reply to “Greens” (Posted November 16, 2012 at 9:12 pm): You are confused. The Liberals were not in power for over two decades of self-government in the Territory. That was a separate political party known as the Country Liberal Party, or CLP. Unlike the CLP, the Liberals have some quite credible achievements in Indigenous affairs. For example, it was the Liberal Party that drafted and passed the Aboriginal Land Rights Act NT, which is regarded internationally as best practice in the recognition of rights in land held by pre-existing Indigenous groups in circumstances of colonisation and settlement.
It was the Liberal Party that ensured strong Aboriginal sacred areas protection in NT legislation, and required the NT government to provide for the processes of claiming community living areas on pastoral leases, and town camp leases in towns in the NT. The Liberal Party created the ADC and NAC, as well as training and employment programs for people living in remote communities. More recently, it was the Liberal Party which began expanded primary health care funding in remote regions, funded the initial rollout of Opal fuel and expanded youth services, vastly increased Commonwealth housing programs, and moved to intervene with massive emergency resources in an effort at trying to help prevent the further social disintegration of Aboriginal families and communities in remote regions.
On the Labor side, it was ALP governments which established the Aboriginal Land Fund Commission and its successors. Other ALP achievements include the Woodward Royal Commission into Land Rights, funding for Aboriginal Hostels and Indigenous Business Australia, ATSIC, the Deaths in Custody Royal Commission and associated reforms, the Council for Reconciliation, the Stolen Generations enquiry, and funding for many valuable services, such as the Aboriginal community-controlled health, legal and education sectors.
Most importantly, it was Labor which recognised Native Title Rights in legislation, and established a process for settling claims to these rights.
There are a myriad of other achievements in the Indigenous affairs area by both Labor and the Liberals.
It is immature and glib for the Greens to just dismiss the Liberal and Labor efforts as “hopeless”. They were not always perfect, but they have come a long way in the last forty years, and done a lot of good which is too rarely acknowledged. It is very easy to identify shortcomings, but many failed programs had to be tried in order to find out what actually worked for the benefit of the people.
On the other hand, it could well be argued that the approach of the Greens to Indigenous affairs is hopelessly immature and opportunistic, as they continually invest their political capital in emotionally charged issues, without taking care to negotiate beneficial outcomes within the realms of what can be realistically achieved in these situations.

Recent Comments by Bob Durnan

Elferink and Gooda clash over underage marriage
Peter, Posted June 30, 2017 at 2:30 pm: some young girls may resist promised marriage more strongly these days, but I doubt whether some are in a position to do so.
It has been authoritatively reported by youth workers in Alice Springs and Tennant Creek in the last few years that rape of young women is rife in these towns.


I’m not kungka, I’m arelhe
Does anybody know if the hours when the Arrernte words teaching program is held at the Apmere angkentye-kenhe are available somewhere on the net, or anywhere else?
I thought I had seen it advertised for every Wednesday night at 6pm, but this doesn’t appear to be the case?
I have gone there at this time, found it closed, and no notice or info on the door.
Anybody wanna clarify here?


Judge Borchers’ position should be assessed: CAALAS
Alex, of course one part-time worker with CAALAS is not able to, in your words, “work closely with EVERY SINGLE young person going throughout Central Australian court system, their family, community, lawyer, school and other service-providers to provide the young person with the support they need to get back on track and stay out of trouble”.
That is exactly my point, and why it is wrong for you to lay the blame on that worker, as you did when you wrote “if your PART-TIME advocacy programme co-ordinator did her job after this child’s court appearance in March, then he wouldn’t have appeared in court again in May.”
As I said earlier: That advocacy programme co-ordinator performed her job with great diligence and dedication, and cannot be held to blame for any alleged failure of duty of care, as the case load of such cases far exceeds the ability of one worker to cover even a small proportion of them. She was doing her job very well, covering as many of the cases as she could, but she wasn’t a magician. So your cheap jibe at her reputation is wrongly placed, and you should withdraw it.


Judge Borchers’ position should be assessed: CAALAS
Evelyne Roullet, Posted June 22, 2017 at 1:42 pm: Ralph was not talking about where or how the kid should be housed. He was referring to the bigger issue of the huge trauma in his life, caused by the alleged killing of his mother by his father. Kids who experience this level of trauma need intensive help and support, and we need to make sure that they get it, from wherever it may be best available.


Judge Borchers’ position should be assessed: CAALAS
Alex, on June 22, 2017 at 11:44 am you said, and I quote: “If your PART-TIME advocacy programme co-ordinator did her job after this child’s court appearance in March, then he wouldn’t have appeared in court again in May.”
So you cast an aspersion on her. It is entirely unwarranted.
Don’t wriggle out, apologise.


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