Congratulations to Jimmy Cocking for getting his motion up, and …

Comment on At last, public will get a say on Anzac Oval: Town Council by Alex Hope.

Congratulations to Jimmy Cocking for getting his motion up, and if the IAP2 principles could be made mandatory for NT government decisions as well as Council ones, that would be even better.

However if we are looking for a suitable template for governmental decision making we also to need to consider in every decision:

– what the evidence base is for the need for, and where appropriate the methodology of, the project;
– the pros, cons and relative costs of the options being canvassed (though perhaps this is implied in “the information they need to participate in a meaningful way” mentioned above;

and in our context, in addition to this, for decisions with a significant impact on Aboriginal people it is clearly necessary to consider

– what is the view of the appropriate Aboriginal group with authority to speak on the matter in question.

I find it quite ironic that there should be a view on Council that the ABORIGINAL traditional owners of Alice Springs should not have been specifically consulted about the siting of a national INDIGENOUS art gallery, let alone not been given a seat on the Government’s advisory committee in the first place.

Recent Comments by Alex Hope

Anzac Oval grab Minister rejects Coles Mural listing
One of the greatest heritage ironies was surely the decision by then minister Marion Scrymgour not to list the Rieff building, about where the credit union is now, a fine example of a tin shed dressed up as a shop in the best tradition of Alice in the 50s, with its attractive pressed metal verandah ceiling on the corner of Gregory Terrace and Hartley St.
The irony?
An Abooriginal minister allowing the destruction of a bit of whitefella heritage to allow the expansion of an Aboriginal-owned shopping centre.

Coles Mural: Government, Heritage Council fall silent
Who owns the wall anyway?
Presumably Coles only leases it.
Perhaps the owner would care to comment on the imposition that heritage listing might bring.
One could perhaps argue that the building would be more valuable with a historical mural than without?

A job program that actually works
Congratulations to all, and it will be great to see some local faces as I do my shopping.
About six or seven years ago Woolies ran a similar program and employed some local Aborigianl people, but none of them lasted very long once they completed the training.
It would be interesting to follow up this story in six months or a year to see how these new keen employees go, and whether they get the ongoing support needed to stay in the job, or even better, to go beyond entry-level positions.

Planning an Aboriginal art centre without Aboriginal people
I have been waiting all year to hear what Doris Stuart had to say on the matter, as the senior member of the family that speaks for the site.
Thank you to her and the Alice Springs News Online for the report.
How shameful that it seems that neither the NT Government nor the advisory committee with an Aboriginal majority took the fundamental step of consulting with Ms Stuart.
And if anyone doubts her goodwill towards the town, let us remember that as an act of practical reconciliation she facilitated the sacrifice of an Arrernte stone from a local sacred site, so that the one stolen from Karlu Karlu (Devils Marbles) and placed on Flynn’s memorial could be returned where it belonged.

Council shoots Anzac precinct gallery down in flames
Absurdity piled on absurdity.
First we have a government, proposing to build an Indigenous art gallery without reference to the Aboriginal custodians of the land they propose to use, and furthermore with apparently no consideration of how they might gain a consensus from the hundreds of groups of Indigenous people across the nation so as to give the “national” tag some credibility.
Secondly we have the absurdity of trying to force the local council to come on board and accept a site which is not only unacceptable to the traditional owners, but also to a large but as yet unknown properly ascertained proportion of ratepayers; which has also been chosen on the basis of dubious reasoning.
How long can this schemozzle keep running?

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