The Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER) is a whole-of-government initiative involving six Australian Government portfolios, announced by the former Australian Government.
The Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA) is the lead coordination agency.
Government Business Managers (GBMs) have been appointed to communities (or groups of communities) to look after the coordination of NTER measures on the ground.
The Australian Government is committed to consultation and engagement with the people and communities involved in the NTER. The 2008 Budget funded Indigenous Engagement Officers (IEOs) to work with GBMs in a number of communities. The 2009 Budget continues funding for these positions and provides for the recruitment of additional IEOs.
The Australian Government also consulted with Indigenous communities between June and late August 2009 about the future of the NTER and the redesign of certain measures, and has since legislated changes to some of these measures.
The Commonwealth Ombudsman is supporting the NTER and investigating complaints from people who believe they have been treated unfairly or unreasonably by an Australian Government agency.
The Australian Government is also committed to working cooperatively with the Northern Territory Government (NTG) in relation to the NTER and major investments in Indigenous housing.
The NTG has its own reform agenda, including:
- the establishment from 1 July 2008 of a new system of shire councils, amalgamating many small Indigenous community councils running municipal services
- the A Working Future initiative announced in May 2009.