More baloney, presumably sautéed in that good old Adelaide-sourced sherry, …

Comment on Urgent talks with NT government as organisation cannot pay its bills by Bob Durnan.

More baloney, presumably sautéed in that good old Adelaide-sourced sherry, brought to us by Janet, the master chef of cooking up verbal tripe (Posted January 20, 2013 at 1:04 pm). Ms Brown makes the ridiculous, totally untrue assertion that “when Labor [was] in charge [Delia Lawrie] ignored the plight of vulnerable children in the Territory.”
The Martin and Henderson Labor governments resourced child welfare services more than 300% above the wretchedly neglectful level that the previous CLP government judged appropriate.
To this day child welfare workers are still struggling to cope with the dysfunctional child welfare culture that had been allowed to fester Territory-wide during the 23 years of CLP governance.
Delia Lawrie fought long and hard to gain extra funding and set in place a catch-up effort. Delia was the one who genuinely cared about “the plight of vulnerable children in the Territory”.
Janet is just being her usual nasty and obnoxious self – she simply cannot cope with the truth that Lawrie built up the government’s child welfare capacity, and greatly strengthened youth services, only to find that now the CLP is tearing them down.
By the way, if Janet can supply us with the names of the “65 youth organisations” she claims operate in Alice, I would be more than astonished: I would probably join Janet in her state of what often resembles catatonia.
It is ridiculous for her to claim that “Here in Alice we had over 65 organisations which all had the same kids on their books.” This is a completely misleading claim.
I think Janet will find that there are actually only a handful of dedicated “youth organisations” in Alice Springs – the Alice Springs Youth Accommodation Support Services (ASYASS); Bush Mob; Incite Youth Arts; and Central Australian Youth Link-up Service (CAYLUS), if you overlook the fact that many more CAYLUS clients live in remote communities rather than Alice Springs.
There are a couple of organisations that function for the benefit of general community members as well as having strong youth programs (Alice Springs Youth and Community Centre, and the Gap Youth and Community Centre). Perhaps you could throw in the Boy Scouts and Girl Guides if you want to be pedantic, but most people would see these as being more focused on children.
Separate to these primary or specialised youth organisations there are quite a few individual programs run by organisations that are not primarily “youth organisations” – e.g. some by the Salvos and other churches, some by Aboriginal organisations like Congress (which provides a mental health service for all young people) and Tangentyere (which has a range of programs for town camp youth), some by sports clubs.
Most of these are specialised programs provided to address specific functions, meeting real needs in particular settings, but it is misleading to call them “youth organisations” per se.
Does Janet really think that the Youth Hub should also run the Scouts, Guides, church youth groups, mental health services, youth choirs and the Under 14s footy competition?
However Janet’s primary point – that “To correctly and effectively deal with the child safety in Alice we need one department” is undeniable.
That is why Delia created the Department of Families and Children, which the Mills Government has unfortunately now abolished as a stand-alone department, and confused the focus on child welfare by folding it into the enormous and problematic Education Department.

Bob Durnan Also Commented

Urgent talks with NT government as organisation cannot pay its bills
Janet (Posted January 23, 2013 at 6:11 pm): Thanks for your calm reply.
As slander is the act of saying something false that damages a person’s reputation, I don’t see how you can evade responsibility on this occasion. What you said about Delia is clearly false and damaging, and you should apologise to Ms Lawrie for having said it, or at least graciously withdraw the allegation.
This does not necessarily mean it is legally actionable, as most slanders aren’t. But that doesn’t stop them from being slanderous in the everyday sense of the word, and it doesn’t mean that they should be tolerated or permitted to stand unquestioned in civilised discourse.
I would appreciate it if you would apologise for making the clearly incorrect statement that I am “part of the systematic cause for the youth on the street problem growing.”
Again, this is clearly untrue, and a slur on my reputation. I can’t imagine that you or anybody else can produce evidence that would prove any element of truth in that statement, and I strongly deny that it is correct.
Further, your allegation that I “never say talk about the kids only those who work in the organisations” is clearly and demonstrably untrue, and should be withdrawn in the interests of enabling the maintenance of a forum in which reasonable discussion and debate is able to take place.
Similarly, your jibe that “youth workers [are] only interested in their own ‘look at what I am doing’” is a grossly unfair generalisation to make about most youth workers, and amounts to slander of them as a group. You should apologise to the youth workers for slurring them too.
In relation to your suggestion that I should read a particular Melky article, I have searched the ASN Online archive and there appear to be around 100 items which match the key words “Melky” and “youth”. I don’t have time to read all these and try to figure out which one you are talking about, so I would appreciate it if you could provide some detail as to date, title, web link etc.
Finally, we need to at least try to be accurate when we make statements and use data in these debates, and to be willing to name our sources and identify the origins of our statistics.
It may not seem important to you “whether there is 65 or 35 different organisations what does it matter”, but to anybody else seriously interested in understanding the situation and finding constructive solutions to key problems, it would matter a lot, as it would be necessary to look at what those organisations do, how well they perform, whether or not there is unnecessary duplication, and what the priorities for action are before proposing solutions.
In this case I have been looking at these questions, and I believe that there are less than ten non-government organisations involved in providing relevant intervention and treatment services to the youth most at risk in Alice Springs. (I named them in one of my previous comments in this thread, so I won’t bother repeating their names here).
It is also clear to me that not all these organisations are duplicating services or wasting resources or dealing with the same clients. Most of them clearly aren’t doing these things.
That is not to say that there couldn’t be some improvements made in these areas in some cases, but knocking all these programs on the head just because you have somehow gained the impression that there are 35 or 65 of them and that they are all useless and not achieving anything would simply be a stupid thing to do.
Talking about 65 youth organisations, just because somebody has told you that this is the case, or because you have guessed it or made it up, is dangerous and irresponsible. This kind of loose exaggerated gossip can seriously misinform readers of this site, and add to the unhelpful air of panic and cynicism which already pervades efforts to discuss this subject in an intelligent and constructive manner in Alice Springs.

Urgent talks with NT government as organisation cannot pay its bills
Janet (Posted January 23, 2013 at 1:50 pm): you made highly inaccurate allegations about Delia Lawrie’s government record, which amounted to a vicious attack on her personal integrity (at your comment Posted January 20, 2013 at 1:04 pm). You also slandered the organisations and people working in the youth sector (at your comments Posted January 20, 2013 at 1:04 pm, January 23, 2013 at 8:17 am, and Posted January 23, 2013 at 1:50 pm).
Many of the things you say display continual exaggerated criticism of organisations you don’t like, and verballing of your victims, whilst some of your statements are accurate or at least defensible. I am not criticising everything you say, just the things which are wrong.
Perhaps you think you should just be allowed to get away with making unwarranted attacks and making highly inaccurate accusations without being challenged?
By the way, you still haven’t named the “65 youth organisations” which you claim are responsible for all the “waste”, just as you choose to ignore other challenges to your inaccuracies.

Urgent talks with NT government as organisation cannot pay its bills
My advice to Janet (Posted January 23, 2013 at 8:17 am) is this: if you don’t like criticism, then start being more careful before you write wild, unfounded accusations and assertions against individuals and groups with whom you disagree.
We could all advise others to try to see things from our point of view and “walk a mile in my shoes”. However this would work out better for you if you started taking a bit of care to think before you blurt things out.

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