Paul Parker (Posted December 22, 2015 at 8:03 am): I …

Comment on Cultural museum for Alice: That’s how it could be done by Bob Durnan.

Paul Parker (Posted December 22, 2015 at 8:03 am): I am not so pessimistic. People need to remember that the Alice Springs situation is pretty unusual compared to most other places that have contemplated the complicated project of planning to build a contemporary cultural centre.
There are moves afoot towards mediating disputes, repairing damaged relationships, and building cultural bridges; and there is leadership adequate to the task.
It is just long, difficult work, by its very nature.
Alice combines the presence of a large mass of “immigrant” Aboriginal individuals, numbering several thousand, mostly from the central Australian hinterland, with a much smaller local network of traditional owner and custodian families, many of whom were displaced during the colonial period, and some of whom have intermarried with members of the immigrant groups.
Alice Springs also boasts an unbroken line of detailed knowledge about traditional culture and social practices in the area, carried by some of the TOs and their associated custodian families who have re-occupied the town following the demise of the old systems of displacement and control.
Many of these TOs and custodians had been shipped away, in the early to mid-twentieth century, to missions, assimilation settlements, welfare homes, pastoral leases, mines and foster homes.
When you add to this volatile mix the fact that most of the local traditional owner families were subjected to the full brunt of colonial occupation, gun-enforced pastoral settlement, missionary interventions, lawless mining rushes and feral prospectors, all accompanied by succeeding waves of deadly new diseases, rogue cops and the misguided fracturing of their families by often over-enthusiastic child welfare practitioners, it is a wonder that so many of these families have survived in some form. Many have not.
Therefore it is little wonder that there is still more healing time needed for some of these families, for mediating, and mending some of the fractures that have arisen between them.
Other players in the town would do well to keep this in mind, and provide non-partisan support and solidarity, rather than pick away at the exposed wounds.
If it is going to happen, it needs to be done properly. Great patience is required.
Still, it is good to see Steve Brown and other local leaders here willing to offer unconditional support for the general project, and to see a number of others, both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal, willing to put their heads up and provide leadership in the effort to explore ways forward on these complex issues.

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.


Be Sociable, Share!