This report documents NTER activities, NTER achievements during the last 12 months and the NTER Taskforce recommendations for future services for Indigenous people in the Northern Territory
Table of Contents
- The Northern Territory Emergency Response Taskforce
- NTER key achievements
- Taskforce views
AppendicesAppendix A - Biographical profiles of NTER members
Appendix B - NTER Taskforce meetings
Appendix C - Speaking engagements and meetings - Dr Gordon
Appendix D - Interviews and media - Dr Gordon
Appendix E - Interviews and media - MajGen Chalmers
Letter of Transmittal
I am pleased to provide the Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER) Taskforce's Final Report to Government. This report documents our activities, NTER achievements during the last 12 months and the NTER Taskforce recommendations for future services for Indigenous people in the Northern Territory.
I would like to acknowledge the announcements in June 2007 and subsequent action taken by the then Prime Minister, the Honourable John Howard MP and the then Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, the Honourable Mal Brough MP; to address the issues raised in the Little Children are Sacred report.
I am pleased that the current Government is demonstrating its commitment to closing the gap of Indigenous disadvantage I thank you and Prime Minister Rudd for your continued support of the emergency response to tackle the problems of child abuse and improve the future prospects of Indigenous children and their families in the Northern Territory.
As Chair of the NTER Taskforce I am delighted to say that all Taskforce members have brought their individual skills, interests and knowledge to the NTER Taskforce. Drawing on their experience and expertise in particular areas ranging from health, government, the law, education and business, members have been able to contribute in unique ways to the oversight of the implementation of the emergency response.
I would like to highlight the contribution by the Operational Commander, Major General Dave Chalmers. The successful implementation of the NTER is largely due to the Major General's exceptional command and logistical expertise.
The NTER Taskforce welcomes the establishment of the Review Board to conduct an independent and transparent review of the first phase of the NTER. NTER Taskforce members look forward to providing input to the Review Board.
Dr Sue Gordon AM
This is the final report to the government from the Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER) Taskforce. This report period is from June 2007 to June 2008.
The Australian Government has in place emergency measures to protect Aboriginal children in the Northern Territory. These measures were originally announced on 21 June 2007 by the then Prime Minister, the Honourable John Howard MP and the then Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, the Honourable Mal Brough MP, and became known as the Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER).
The Prime Minister, the Honourable Kevin Rudd MP and the Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, the Honourable Jenny Macklin MP, had supported the emergency response while in opposition. Following the Federal election in October 2007, they reaffirmed their commitment to the NTER, subject to a review to be undertaken in mid 2008.
The aim of the NTER is to protect children and make communities safe as well as creating a better future for Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory.
The body of this report provides information about:
- the role and activities of the Taskforce (section 2);
- key achievements of the NTER (section 3); and
- the Taskforce's views on the NTER (section 4).
The appendices provide the following, more detailed information:
- Biographical profiles of NTER members (Appendix A);
- NTER Taskforce meetings, dates and attendees (Appendix B);
- Dr Gordon's speaking engagements and meetings (Appendix C);
- Dr Gordon's media interviews (Appendix D);
- Major General Chalmers's media interviews (Appendix E).
2. The Northern Territory Emergency Response Taskforce
2.1 Terms of Reference
On 25 June 2007, the former Australian Government established the NTER Taskforce in the wake of the Little Children are Sacred Report.1
The NTER Taskforce's objective is to oversight the response to deal with child neglect and family violence in remote Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory.
The NTER Taskforce's terms of reference are:
- Provide expert advice to the Australian Government on the implementation of the emergency response.
- Provide oversight of the NTER Operations Centre.
- Promote public understanding of the issues involved.
- Alert government to current and emerging issues that relate directly to the implementation of the response.
- Report to the Prime Minister and the Minister for Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs on the progress of the response.
The Taskforce has been in operation since June 2007 and is supported by full-time administrative and field staff. Its operational base was initially in Alice Springs and is now in Darwin. The NTER Taskforce has been chaired by Dr Sue Gordon and Major General Dave Chalmers is the Operational Commander of the NTER Operations Centre.
Taskforce members have experience in areas such as health, government, the law, education and business. Biographical profiles of current members are at Appendix A.
At 30 June 2008, the membership of the NTER Taskforce is as follows:
- Dr Sue Gordon AM (Chair);
- Major General Dave Chalmers AO, CSC (Operational Commander);
- Dr Bill Glasson AO;
- Mr Roger Corbett AO;
- Mrs Miriam-Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann AM;
- Mr Terry Moran AO; and
- Mr Mike Burgess.
Previous members of the NTER Taskforce are:
- Mr John Reeves QC, from 25 June 2007 until October 2007, when he resigned due to the announcement of his appointment as a Judge of the Federal Court of Australia. Mr Reeves was not replaced on the Taskforce.
- Dr Peter Shergold AC, from 25 June 2007 until 8 February 2008, when he ceased being Secretary of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Dr Shergold's position on the Taskforce was filled by Mr Terry Moran AO.
- Mr Paul Tyrrell, from 25 June 2007 until 31 January 2008, when he retired as Chief Executive of the Northern Territory Chief Minister's Department. Mr Tyrrell's position on the Taskforce was filled by Mr Mike Burgess.
2.3 Activities of the NTER Taskforce
Consistent with the NTER Taskforce's Terms of Reference, Taskforce members have provided advice to the Australian Government, overseen the work of the NTER Operations Centre, and promoted public understanding of the NTER. The Taskforce has undertaken its work through holding meetings of the NTER Taskforce; managing the Operations Centre through Major General Chalmers; visiting communities; and talking to many people including individuals, community leaders, organisations, bureaucrats and Ministers.
Between June 2007 and June 2008, NTER Taskforce members have met twelve times. Information about the dates, locations, and attendance for each of these meetings is at Appendix B.
Two meetings were teleconferences while the other ten saw the members brought together in various locations: Brisbane, Canberra, Alice Springs and Darwin. At each meeting, presentations were made by relevant senior officials on various subjects related to the NTER, including child protection, health, housing, employment, welfare reform, land issues and community stores.
2.3.2 NTER Taskforce's Advice to the Government
Consistent with Terms of Reference 1, 4 and 5, the NTER Taskforce has provided advice to the Australian Government on the implementation of the NTER and related issues, following each meeting of the NTER Taskforce.
In addition, members of the Taskforce have briefed the Minister on various issues in person, in writing and by telephone.
2.3.3 Oversight of the Operations Centre
Consistent with Terms of Reference 2 and 4, Major General Chalmers's role as Operational Commander is crucial in managing the roll-out of the emergency response.
Major General Chalmers and his team at the Operations Centre are responsible for ensuring rapid, coherent and coordinated on-the-ground rollout of the response and operational effort. This includes:
- community engagement so that communities know what is happening and why;
- data gathering and monitoring including identification of communities in critical situations;
- coordinated delivery of resources and activities such as the deployment of child health check teams and commencement of income management in communities;
- the setting up, appointment and support of Government Business Managers; and
- liaison with the Australian Government, the Northern Territory Government and other state authorities to provide the best support on the ground.
The Operational Commander keeps other Taskforce members and the Minister informed about issues that may impact on the overall success of the implementation of the NTER. This is done through emailing a weekly situation report to other Taskforce members; providing an update to each NTER Taskforce meeting; and working closely with the Chair and the Minister.
The Operations Centre is made-up from staff seconded from 8 Australian and Northern Territory Government agencies and at its peak had a total of 44 staff.
2.3.4 Promoting Public Understanding
Consistent with Term of Reference 3, the NTER Taskforce Chair, the Operational Commander and other members of the Taskforce have undertaken a number of activities to assist with promoting public understanding of the intervention measures. These have included visiting affected communities, addressing various forums, using external networks, and engaging with the media.
In addition to visits by teams from the Operations Centre, Dr Gordon, Major General Chalmers and other members of the NTER Taskforce have visited remote Northern Territory communities jointly and separately.
By 30 June 2008, Dr Gordon will have visited 46 of the communities affected by the NTER, some more than once. She has also visited a number of the town camps in Alice Springs, Darwin, Tennant Creek and Katherine.
Major General Chalmers has visited 51 of the communities as well as several town camps in Alice Springs, Darwin, Katherine and Tennant Creek.
Other Taskforce members have made individual visits to a number of the prescribed communities.
As a group, the Taskforce has visited the following communities:
|16 July 2007||Titjikala|
|22-24 October 2007||Canteen Creek, Galiwinku, Ngukurr, Ramingining, Robinson River and Titjikala|
|12 March 2008||Barunga and Manyallaluk|
|7 April 2008||Galiwinku|
|22 May 2008||Nguiu|
When NTER Taskforce members met with communities, the role of the Taskforce, the various measures to be implemented and how they might affect people were explained. Community visits also provided invaluable opportunities to hear first hand from men and women in individual communities.
Dr Gordon has also held a number of meetings to focus on child protection matters with women in the communities she has visited, including Milikipati (Melville Island), Titjikala, Ntaria (Hermannsburg), Papunya, Imanpa, Mutitjulu, Kaltukatjara (Docker River), Apatula (Finke), Yirrkala, Belyuen, Beswick and Yuendumu.
Engagement with external organisations
While Dr Gordon and Major General Chalmers have been working full-time on the NTER, other Taskforce members have also engaged with external organisations to promote understanding of the NTER, through formal and informal networks:
- Mr John Reeves was able to use his contacts within the legal profession to good effect while he was a member;
- Dr Glasson is a member of the Regional Telecommunication Independent Review Committee, co-chair of the Northern Territory Emergency Response Health Expert Panel and has well-established networks in the medical profession;
- Mrs Ungunmerr-Baumann is a member of the Northern Territory Indigenous Education Council and has well-established networks in the education sector and among other Indigenous people in the Northern Territory;
- Mr Corbett is a member of the Board of Directors of Outback Stores and has well-established networks in the business sector both nationally and internationally; and
- Dr Shergold, Mr Tyrell, Mr Moran and Mr Burgess have used their respective positions within the Australian and Northern Territory government bureaucracies to ensure that policies and implementation of the NTER are well coordinated across governments.
A detailed list of Dr Gordon's engagements and activities is located at Appendix C.
Over the course of the year, Dr Gordon and Major General Chalmers have taken part in various media interviews on all issues surrounding the work of the NTER. A detailed list of Dr Gordon's media engagements can be found at Appendix D. A detailed list of Major General Chalmers's media engagements can be found at Appendix E.
Dr Glasson has participated in some media interviews related to the NTER, particularly related to health issues.
Dr Gordon and Mrs Ungunmerr-Baumann have also featured in community announcements which have aired on local radio stations in the Northern Territory.
- Pat Anderson and Rex Wild, Ampe Akelyernemane Meke Mekarle Little Children are Sacred: The Report of the Northern Territory Board of Inquiry into the Protection of Aboriginal Children from Sexual Abuse, 30 April 2007, http://www.nt.gov.au/dcm/inquirysaac/pdf/bipacsa_final_report.pdf
3. NTER key achievements
The NTER was originally designed with three phases:
- Stabilisation - the current phase to introduce emergency measures to protect children and make communities safe (year 1);
- Normalisation of services and infrastructure (years 2-5); and
- Longer term support based on the same norms and choices that other Australians enjoy (year 5 onward).
The work of the Taskforce has focussed on the measures in the first phase, although there has been some preparatory work on later phases, particularly through the development of the Strategic Investment Housing and Infrastructure Program (SIHIP).
All emergency measures in the first phase have been progressively implemented in 73 communities of 100 people or more on Aboriginal land and on Community Living Areas (the so called prescribed or NTER communities). Some of the critical and sensitive measures, such as the introduction of Income Management, also apply on outstations and town camps within prescribed areas.
The NTER measures and the responsible Australian Government portfolios have been:
- Welfare Reform and Employment - Department of Human Services (DHS); Centrelink; Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR); Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA)
- Law and Order - Attorney-General's Department (AGD); FaHCSIA; Australian Federal Police (AFP);
- Enhancing Education - DEEWR and Centrelink;
- Supporting Families - FaHCSIA and DEEWR;
- Improving Child and Family Health - Department of Health and Ageing (DoHA);
- Housing and Land Reform - FaHCSIA and DEEWR; and
- Coordination - FaHCSIA; Commonwealth Ombudsman; Department of Defence.
Australian Government departments have worked with Northern Territory Government agencies, local government bodies and non-government organisations to implement many of the NTER measures.
There were a number of defined activities that supported achievement of these measures. This section of the report addresses some of the key achievements from the perspective of the NTER Taskforce.
3.1 Welfare Reform and Employment
Welfare Reform and Employment has consisted of two main activities:
- Changing the way welfare payments are made, so that benefits intended for children are used for children and support active school participation; and
- Remote Area Exemptions were lifted and the phased removal of Community Development Employment Projects (CDEP) was introduced to support the transition to real jobs and mainstream employment services.
The welfare payment changes were for an initial period of 12 months in each community. In this time, half of all income-support and family assistance payments have been income managed, that is, held back so that the money could be spent only on food, school nutrition, rent and other essential items.
These provisions affect all people (Indigenous and non-Indigenous) who live in prescribed areas of the Northern Territory and who receive welfare payments.
Income management has been applied to all people in these Northern Territory communities to avoid a situation where people are 'humbugged' or threatened to hand over cash. These obligations follow individuals and primary carers even if they move out of the prescribed areas.
As at 11 June 2008, Income Management was in place in 52 communities, associated outstations and seven town camp regions. A total of 13,309 people were being income managed as at 13 June.
It is expected that Income Management will be implemented in all communities by late August 2008.
The former Australian Government had a policy of phasing out the CDEP program as part of the NTER.
On 10 December 2007, the new Government placed a moratorium on further removal of CDEP from communities while options to better focus the program towards jobs, training and enterprise development were considered. At that time, 16 CDEP organisations and over 2000 CDEP participants had been transitioned off CDEP.
On 30 April 2008, the Government announced its timetable for Indigenous employment reforms. At that time it was announced that as an interim measure the Government would restore CDEP from 1 July 2008 in the 25 prescribed Northern Territory communities and 5 town camp regions where CDEP had been abolished.
While CDEP is being restored, the process of converting CDEP positions supporting government service delivery has been continuing. On 12 June 2008, it was expected that 400 Northern Territory Government and local government positions would be created, and it was expected that 1119 Australian Government funded positions will have been created by 30 June 2008.
The Australian Government has recently released a discussion paper on the future of CDEP and Indigenous Employment Programs.2
There are 43 Community Employment Brokers (CEB) servicing 67 communities and associated outstations.
3.2 Law and Order
The aim of the emergency measures was to protect children and make communities safe. This measure directly supported this through:
- Putting more police in communities to make people safe;
- Banning alcohol and pornography; and
- Night Patrols.
Police levels have been increased, including secondments from other jurisdictions to supplement Northern Territory police resources, to improve community safety and law enforcement, and to help to prevent violence and anti-social behaviour.
Since the NTER was announced in June 2007, 51 additional police have been deployed: 33 Australian Federal Police an Interstate police and 18 Northern Territory police. At 13 June 2008, there was a new police presence in 18 communities and nine out of ten custodial facilities were operational. The Australian Government has committed funding for 66 Australian Federal Police officers until 2009/10.
The former Australian Government legislated to modify the Northern Territory Liquor Act, creating new obligations, penalties and requirements. The intention was to ban the sale, possession, transportation, and consumption of alcohol on Aboriginal land and to monitor takeaway sales across the Northern Territory.
The new laws have been in force since 15 September 2007.
Some clubs (licensed premises) in communities have been allowed to operate under strict conditions, and existing liquor permits remain, though their operation has been closely examined.
The Australian Government has recently announced an additional activity under this measure. The establishment of a new Substance Abuse Intelligence Desk (SAID), to be based in Katherine, will help improve community safety and law enforcement.
A package of measures has also been developed and rolled out to address the need for increased alcohol and other drug withdrawal, treatment and rehabilitation services across the Northern Territory.
The Northern Territory Government has also made significant legislative changes including extending public restricted (dry) areas in Darwin and Alice Springs and supporting communities in the development of Alcohol Management Plans and Liquor Permit Systems.
Since 14 September 2007, the possession of pornographic material has been banned in prescribed areas. The supply of this material into these areas is also banned.
The Australian Government has been working with the Northern Territory Government on training needs for pornography education in Aboriginal communities.
Night patrols are being set up and recruitment is occurring.
3.3 Enhancing Education
Education is being enhanced through:
- More teachers;
- Additional classrooms;
- the Accelerating Literacy program and Quality Teaching Package; and
- breakfast and lunch programs in schools.
Funding over four years was provided to the Northern Territory Government to recruit an extra 200 teachers. The first 19 teachers will commence work in classrooms in remote communities at the start of Semester 2 2008.
The rollout of additional classrooms across a number of remote communities is being progressed by the Northern Territory Government.
Literacy and Teaching
The Accelerating Literacy Program and the Quality Teaching Package are being implemented jointly through an integrated approach negotiated with Northern Territory education providers. Quality teaching and accelerated literacy are to a large extent inseparable in terms of delivering improved education outcomes in remote Indigenous communities.
Breakfast and lunch
The School Nutrition Program aims to improve school attendance and engagement by providing breakfast and lunch to school-aged children. Most of the cost has been met by parents through income management.
At 11 June 2008, School Nutrition Programs were in place in 49 communities and associated outstations and seven town camp regions.
3.4 Supporting Families
The Supporting Families element includes:
- repair and construction of children's services and family support such as Mobile Child Protection Teams, crèches and playgroups;
- Child at Risk Workers for Northern Territory Child Protection Services;
- Safe places for families escaping family violence; and
- Youth diversionary activities.
The Australian Government has provided funding to the Northern Territory Government to recruit additional child protection workers to establish a mobile child protection team. One child protection coordinator and seven Mobile Child Protection Team (MCPT) workers commenced on 28 April. The aim is to recruit a total of ten experienced child protection workers.
The Northern Territory Government has commenced a recruitment process to engage Remote Aboriginal Family and Community Workers (RAFCWs) to deliver liaison and support services to Indigenous families and communities. A total of nine full-time and two part-time RAFCWs are being recruited. It is expected that the staff identified for the positions in the seven Top End communities will commence in the last week of June and that the staff for the Central Australian communities will commence in July.
Eight safe places have been built in seven communities. Given the concerns over the contamination of containers, occupancy will not begin until testing shows that all of the containers are safe.
Programs to curb alcohol and drug abuse and anti-social behaviour among young people in Northern Territory remote communities received an injection of funds from the Australian Government. Twenty-one projects, including repairs and improvements to sporting facilities and structured training programs, aim to teach young people vocational and life skills and build pride and self confidence through healthy, safe activities and increased participation in constructive community life.
3.5 Improving Child and Family Health
The key activities that support achievement of this measure include:
- Providing health checks and follow up treatment and care for Indigenous children; and
- Expanding drug and alcohol treatment and rehabilitation services across the Northern Territory to support individuals and communities affected by the new alcohol legislation.
At 13 June 2008, Child Health Checks (CHCs) had been undertaken in 70 communities: 47 by CHC Teams and 23 by Aboriginal Medical Services/Northern Territory Department of Health and Community Services. The estimated total number of CHCs as at 13 June, including Medical Benefits Scheme (MBS) checks, was approximately 11,000. This number allows for double counting of CHCs and MBS Item 708 data. This represents a total coverage rate of children of 64%.
Follow-up Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) specialist treatment has been provided to children in Central Australia. Audiological assessments of 669 children have been completed, 46 have received ENT surgery with 227 children receiving non-surgical ENT follow-up treatment.
Non-surgical dental services have been provided to 350 children.
A block of dental surgery commenced at Katherine Hospital from 10 June with up to 40 children expected to receive surgery.
As indicated in 3.2 above, a package of measures has also been developed and rolled out to address the need for increased alcohol and other drug withdrawal, treatment and rehabilitation services across the Northern Territory.
3.6 Housing and Land Reform
Activities that contributed to achieving this measure include:
- Acquiring five year leases; and
- Community clean ups.
The acquisition of five year leases, and the resumption of special leases for town camps, was intended to facilitate security of tenure and access for the repair of buildings and infrastructure, to help to address overcrowded and sub-standard housing. The leases are also linked to establishing reformed tenancy arrangements for better housing.
New property and tenancy management arrangements are being introduced for public housing in 64 prescribed communities where the Australian Government holds five year leases. The Northern Territory Government will oversee the administration of the new arrangements, which will be based on their Remote Public Housing Management Framework.
The former Australian Government began a program to clean up communities and make repairs to houses, with help from local people.
Community people have been encouraged to do most of the work. This has included picking up rubbish; painting; sweeping out houses; cleaning up community areas; removing old car bodies; and digging trenches for pipes or holes for posts. All materials have been provided, as well as tradespeople to help with urgent repairs.
The community clean up program has commenced in 66 remote communities. 2905 properties have been surveyed and have had 'make safe' repairs completed and 2561 minor repairs have been completed.
The deployment of Government Business Managers (GBMs) was a key activity supporting achievement of this measure.
GBMs have been the single face of the Australian Government at the local community level. Some have been servicing more than one community. At 13 June 2008, there were 51 GBMs servicing 72 communities. The remaining community is serviced by the Alice Springs Indigenous Coordination Centre.
- have been providing the key liaison and consultation point in communities, including communicating the NTER measures at the local level, engaging with Traditional Owners and elders, and working collaboratively with other government representatives (including at the Territory and local levels);
- have been managing and coordinating the day-to-day activities of staff from different Australian Government agencies in the community; and
- have been providing feedback on progress and local issues and concerns to government and to the NTER Operations Centre. Their knowledge and information has been guiding coordinated government action and decision making that is tailored to the particular needs of a community.
4. Taskforce views
Noting that Mr Terry Moran AO (Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet) and Mr Mike Burgess (Northern Territory Department of the Chief Minister) represent their respective governments on the Taskforce and have a role in advising governments in a separate capacity, the views expressed by the Taskforce cannot be taken as the views of those agencies nor the advice that the agencies will provide to governments in considering the recommendations of the Taskforce.
The Taskforce notes the significant investment of the former and current Australian Governments into the NTER:
- the initial announcement of $587 million for the measures announced on 21 June 2007;
- the additional allocation of $313.5 million in February 2008; and
- the announcement in May 2008 of $323.8 million to continue the NTER over the 2008-09 financial year.
The Taskforce also notes the additional funding of $28.9 million to build three new Indigenous boarding facilities in the Northern Territory to improve access to secondary schools for remote Indigenous students; and that the Australian Government is funding other services in the Northern Territory and across Australia that will benefit Indigenous people in the Northern Territory.
The Taskforce notes further that the Northern Territory Government has committed $286.43 million in initiatives over five years through Closing the Gap of Indigenous Disadvantage: a Generational Plan of Action; and that the commitment includes additional funding for Indigenous people and remote communities in the areas of child protection, policing, alcohol and drug management, health outcomes, housing, education, employment, economic participation, and engagement in service delivery.
One year into the emergency response, it is apparent that the initial suspicion and distrust in communities is lifting as Indigenous people in remote communities are recognising that their lives and those of their children are improving through the implementation of the NTER; and as their hopes are raised that their children may have a brighter future.
The Taskforce strongly recommends that funding needs to continue to be maintained with the aim of protecting children and creating a better future for Aboriginal people in the Northern Territory.
In particular, the Taskforce considers that the Australian Government should work with the Northern Territory Government on the issues outlined in this section:
- viability and government investment;
- child protection;
- whole-of-government coordination;
- early childhood;
- income management and stores;
- alcohol; and
4.1 Viability and Government Investment
The Taskforce notes that the long term sustainability of the 73 prescribed communities depends on a range of complex demographic and geographic characteristics; and on developing a stronger economic base with investment from the private sector, the community sector and the Northern Territory and Australian governments.
The Taskforce strongly recommends that the Australian Government continue to work with the Northern Territory Government to assess which communities are viable in the longer term, and to plan future investment based on those assessments.
The Taskforce recommends that communities assessed as being viable should be provided with at least the following:
- adequate housing;
- a police station;
- a health clinic;
- an early childhood education centre;
- a primary school;
- a store;
- independent employment opportunities; and
- access to a secondary school (which may not be in the community).
Divisions within communities can often undermine the ability of a community to deal with its problems and make positive plans for the future. The divisions can be between families, clans, Traditional Owners and others in the community, or for other reasons.
The Taskforce recommends that the Australian Government consider funding mediators to work with communities to find resolutions for internal issues.
4.3 Child Protection
The Taskforce notes that the Australian and Northern Territory governments have each committed additional funding for child protection in the Northern Territory, including through the Family Support Program and the recruitment of additional child protection workers.
The Taskforce supports the recently-funded initiatives and recommends that investment in this area be continued and strengthened.
The Taskforce notes that Aboriginal Family and Community Workers should not be working in isolation and need support from within the wider child protection system.
The Taskforce notes that, in the context of developing a National Child Protection Framework, the Australian Government has recently released a discussion paper titled Australia's children: safe and well.3 The Taskforce strongly supports the development of a National Child Protection Framework and endorses the measures outlined in the discussion paper.
The Taskforce recommends that there be further education campaigns to educate Indigenous people in the Northern Territory about definitions of child neglect, child abuse, pornography, consent, rape and related issues.
4.4 Whole-of-Government Coordination
The Taskforce notes that the successful roll-out of the NTER measures has depended to a large extent on cross-portfolio and cross-jurisdictional coordination and cooperation. This has been enabled through a range of mechanisms including:
- the composition of the Taskforce (particularly the inclusion of officers at the highest level from the Operations Centre, the Northern Territory Public Service and the Australian Public Service);
- the NTER Project Management Board;
- the NTER Operations Centre; and
- Government Business Managers (GBMs).
The Taskforce strongly supports the deployment of GBMs as they have played a key role in coordinating in a whole-of-government, cross-portfolio, cross-jurisdictional manner within each community. The valuable function that GBMs have fulfilled in providing links between the government and the communities needs to be maintained and could be further strengthened through greater links with the Northern Territory Government.
The Taskforce also strongly supports the recent announcement of recruiting local Indigenous "community agents" to facilitate better engagement between governments and communities in the Northern Territory. The Taskforce recommends that consideration should be given to funding additional community agents and interpreters.
The Taskforce would like to emphasise that the child health checks should not be seen as a one off but that they should be accessible by all children on an annual basis and that this requires adequate resourcing of the primary health care system.
The Taskforce considers that the workforce side of the health intervention is critical and this may put this aspect of the intervention at risk if these children who have been identified are not followed up in a timely way for both primary and specialist care services.
The Taskforce notes the commitment of funding to recruit, employ and deploy health professionals through the Remote Area Health Corps.
The Taskforce recognises:
- that the greatest risk to the improved health outcomes from this phase of the intervention is a lack of an adequate work force;
- the need for continued provision of primary health care services to address the medical conditions identified by the routine health checks is essential;
- that Specialist services (particularly ear, nose and throat, dental and general paediatric) need to be rolled out in a co-ordinated way in order that the back log of pathology identified can be addressed;
- that enhancement of primary health care, with both work force and infrastructure, represents the most urgent part of the current implementation of the health initiative;
- that visiting specialists must have ownership of the system and be assigned to particular communities to ensure sustainability;
- that visiting specialists must provide on going care throughout the life of the program;
- that training and engagement of nurses, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous needs to be the major focus;
- that there is a particular need to recruit, train and support Aboriginal health workers, nurses and allied staff;
- and emphasises that future funding be directed as close as possible to those who provide the services, be they doctors, nurses or allied health workers;
- the need to develop the best and most sustainable solutions with the communities in the long term, which means having flexibility in the implementation of the health solutions;
- the need to engage the college of surgeons and other workforce agencies (medical, nursing and allied health), to ensure sustainable work force;
- that remoteness is often a barrier to providing high level health services in certain regions;
- the need to provide appropriate pay and conditions to health workers that is commensurate with those of their city counterparts; and recommends that the Government consider innovative adjustments to the tax system, (eg: tax rebate/zone allowance) to deliver incentives into the system;
- the need to develop better linkages between city and provincial based general practices and those primary heath care centres in the indigenous communities; which would allow for a source of locum relief as well as providing opportunities for the health workers to take holiday relief and time for up-skilling.
The Taskforce welcomes the strategy behind funding housing in communities with different circumstances to different levels in the context of considering where investment is most warranted.
However, the Taskforce notes that overcrowding is an issue in all NTER communities and town camps; and that the majority of communities are not receiving new housing.
The Taskforce strongly recommends that governments consider additional investment to alleviate overcrowding in remote communities in the Northern Territory, while ensuring that the design and location of new housing is economically viable as well as culturally and environmentally appropriate.
The Taskforce notes that there is inconsistent treatment of support workers such as teachers, health care staff and police regarding their housing. If people have come from outside the community, governments provide them with housing which is at an acceptable standard. However, if staff are community people, they are expected to live in their own homes, which are often overcrowded and badly in need of repair. The Taskforce recommends that this inequity be addressed as a matter of urgent priority in order to retain the valuable contribution of Indigenous people who are working to improve in-community services that support the NTER. housing for support staff must meet and maintain acceptable standards.
The Taskforce considers that it is vital to continue to focus on increasing employment opportunities for Indigenous people in remote communities through economic development activities and through partnerships with industry and governments.
The Taskforce recommends that governments continue to identify, convert and establish 'real jobs' in communities.
The Taskforce recommends that all jobs created in Indigenous communities should be market waged jobs; and notes that in some cases it may be more appropriate for these to be filled on a part-time or job-shared basis rather than as full-time positions.
The Taskforce notes that the Australian Government has recently issued a discussion paper on the future of CDEP and Indigenous Employment Programs4 and that the Government is preparing an Indigenous Economic Development Strategy. The Taskforce supports the principles enunciated in that discussion paper about the need for local solutions; the acknowledgement of different types of economies; the links between education and skills; the need for Indigenous people to see a working future beyond CDEP; the importance of communities engaging with business; and the importance of partnerships.
The Taskforce recommends that government procurement policies should support the development of partnerships between Indigenous communities and the private sector and that there should be a continuum of support programs for Indigenous private sector employers rather than isolated stand-alone programs. The Taskforce recommends that consideration should be given to how private companies could be encouraged to work with Indigenous communities to help identify and implement economic opportunities.
The Taskforce recommends that consideration should be given to expanding the role of Community Employment Brokers (CEBs) so the CEBs could:
- work with the Northern Territory Government Economic Development Officers;
- identify and facilitate economic development opportunities in new and emerging industries; and
- respond flexibly to the circumstances of individuals, including the identification of jobs and training outside the communities in which people currently live.
4.8 Early Childhood
The Taskforce considers that investment in early childhood health and education is critical, particularly in remote communities, and notes the recently-announced investment in these priority areas.
The Taskforce supports the Government's policy that every 4-year-old should have access to early childhood education and recommends that early childhood education facilities should exist in each viable community.
The Taskforce recommends that greater consideration be given to establishing parenting programs for Indigenous parents in remote communities and greater support for pregnant women.
The Taskforce recommends that early childhood education programs that can be delivered in the home be made available to children who are waiting for early childhood education facilities to be established in their community.
The Taskforce considers that adequate provision of educational facilities is essential for Indigenous people of all ages: from early childhood, through primary and secondary school and technical and further education and training.
The Taskforce welcomes the increase in classrooms, teachers and boarding schools. The Taskforce welcomes the Northern Territory Government's commitment to provide additional infrastructure and staffing to meet increased demand through rising attendance; and the Australian Government's contribution towards achieving those goals.
The Taskforce recommends that there should be a primary school in each viable community.
The Taskforce notes that some parents are not contributing to the cost of the School Nutrition Program and recommends that this be made compulsory.
In relation to the issue of bilingual education, the Taskforce considers that it is important to keep a balance: it is vital for Indigenous children in remote communities to be educated in English to a level which is comparable to other Australian children, while not losing their traditional Indigenous languages and cultures.
The Taskforce also considers that it is important to ensure that, as education moves from the classroom to an online environment, children in remote Indigenous communities not be left further behind.
The Taskforce recommends all secondary school age children be able to access a secondary education. The Taskforce recommends that where there are not boarding facilities available for high school students, alternative accommodation with appropriate social supports should be made available so that young people from remote communities can access a secondary education.
The Taskforce recommends that training programs be made available for high school students to prepare them for work in industries such as the mining industry. These programs should teach industry-related skills (such as operating plant equipment, driver training and maintenance of machinery) and broader workplace requirements (such as the importance of turning up to work every day and of keeping alcohol, drugs, and violence away from the workplace).
The Taskforce recommends that adults in remote communities have access to literacy and numeracy programs.
The Taskforce recommends that the Australian Government work with the Northern Territory Government to facilitate Indigenous people having greater access to education training programs, such as those for teachers' assistants, tutors and Indigenous Education Workers, at Charles Darwin University and Batchelor College; and that these programs be linked to vacancies in schools.
4.10 Income Management and Stores
The Taskforce notes that women in many communities have indicated their support for income management, because it ensures money is available for food and other necessities for children, reduces the opportunities for humbugging, and provides a basis for developing household budgeting skills. The Taskforce notes that at some point income management should become voluntary, but that vulnerable people may then be pressured by others into leaving income management when their interests may be best served by continuing to have their income managed.
The Taskforce strongly recommends that early consideration be given as to what happens with income management in different communities given that at 1 July, some communities will have had income management in place for many months and others will have only just had it implemented.
The Taskforce notes the significant improvements that the NTER measures have brought in improving stores in remote communities in the Northern Territory.
The Taskforce recommends that there be a store in each viable community.
Noting the importance of stores in terms of income management and food security, the Taskforce recommends that an ongoing operational subsidy be provided for stores in those communities which are too small to enable the store to be profitable. In other communities, interim arrangements will be required to provide food security whilst compulsory income management is in place. Interim arrangements should not 'lock in' substandard operators and the balance between consumer choice and other policy objectives around improved nutrition and health outcomes require a more strategic approach than has been evident to date.
For communities where there is a licensed but substandard or otherwise inappropriate store operator, the Taskforce recommends that the Australian Government make appropriate arrangements with the local community and Outback Stores or other reputable retailers in remote communities in the Northern Territory such as the Arnhem Land Progress Association.
The Taskforce recommends that consideration should be given to consulting with each community to replace alcohol bans with community-specific Alcohol Management Plans.
The Taskforce supports the recent announcement of the expansion of Indigenous drug and alcohol services across Australia. The Taskforce recommends that additional rehabilitation centres be established in regional and remote areas and that consideration be given to making these accessible for families where a family member is seeking to recover from addiction.
A common theme during community visits was a desire for a permanent police presence. Despite the increase in police presence resulting from the intervention, 50% of prescribed communities remain without a permanent police presence. The Taskforce notes that many of these communities are substantial in terms of population, and continue to be troubled by issues of domestic violence. While the NT Police have a legitimate concern that additional policing presence should not be deployed without a long term assurance of the required operating cost funding to support sustainment of such presences, inadequate policing puts at risk the stable platform upon which other measures need to be rolled out.
The Taskforce recommends that the number of police in communities should continue to be increased so that every community is adequately serviced by police as law and order cannot exist without a police presence.
Appendix A - Biographical profiles of NTER members
Dr Sue Gordon AM (Chair)
Magistrate in the Perth Children's Court. She was Chair of the Australian Government's National Indigenous Council from 6 November 2004 until 31 December 2007. Dr Gordon chaired the Inquiry into Response by Government Agencies to Complaints of Family Violence and Child Abuse in Aboriginal Communities, in Western Australia in 2002. In 2003, Dr Gordon received the Centenary Medal for service to the community, particularly the Aboriginal community and in 1993 she was awarded the Order of Australia for commitment to Aboriginal people and community affairs.
Major General Dave Chalmers AO, CSC (Operational Commander)
Major General Dave Chalmers has considerable organisational and command experience in a range of endeavours. Notably, he commanded Combined Joint Task Force 629, the Australian Defence Force (ADF) relief effort in Sumatra following the Boxing Day 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, and Joint Task Force 636, the ADF support to the Melbourne Commonwealth Games during the planning stages in 2005. In 1997, Major General Chalmers was awarded a Conspicuous Service Cross (CSC) for his work as Secretary to the Army 21 Review. He was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in 2003 for his service in East Timor and promoted to become an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in 2006 for distinguished service as the Commander, Combined Joint Task Force 629 on Operation Sumatra Assist.
Dr William Glasson AO
Current Chair of Cancer Australia and of the Regional Telecommunication Independent Review Committee. Practising ophthalmologist and former Australian Medical Association president, Dr Glasson has worked in a voluntary capacity in various Indigenous communities. In 2008, Dr Glasson was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for service to medicine through contributions to people in rural and remote areas, to the eye health of Indigenous people, and to professional medical organisations.
Mr Roger Corbett AO
Chair of CIES Food Business Forum, member of the board of the Reserve Bank Australia, founder and Board member of Outback Stores, and former Chief Executive Officer and Group Managing Director of Woolworths Ltd. In 2003 Mr Corbett became a member in the Order of Australia (AM) for service to the community and to the retail industry, particularly as a contributor to the development of industry policy and standards. In 2008, Mr Corbett was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for service to business, particularly through leadership and executive roles in the retail sector and a range of allied organisations, and to the community.
Ms Miriam Rose Baumann AM
Mrs Ungunmerr-Baumann was principal of St Francis Xavier Catholic School, Daly River until her retirement in early 2008. In 1998, Mrs Ungunmerr-Baumann was awarded an Order of Australia (AM) for her services to the community of Nauiyu in the Northern Territory as a member of the Community Government Council. She is the Chair of the Aboriginals Benefit Account Advisory Committee and a member of the Northern Territory Indigenous Education Council.
Mr Mike Burgess
Chief Executive of the Northern Territory Department of the Chief Minister since 1 February 2008. Mr Burgess has been in the Northern Territory since 1979. Working as a Civil Engineer, he has been involved in the development of major infrastructure and strategies to improve essential services in urban and remote areas of the Territory. Mr Burgess has held senior positions in the Northern Territory Government and has served on the Boards of various Northern Territory Authorities and research institutions.
Mr Terry Moran AO
Mr Moran was appointed to the position of Secretary, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet in February 2008. Mr Moran was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) on 12 June 2006. In July 2000, he was appointed Secretary of the Victorian Department of Premier and Cabinet. He was Chief Executive of the Office of the State Training Board in Victoria from late 1987 to May 1993. In August 1998, he was appointed Director-General of Education Queensland. More recently, he initiated work on the new Australian Institute of Public Policy to be based in Melbourne.
Appendix B - NTER Taskforce meetings
From June 2007 to June 2008, the NTER Taskforce has held 12 meetings: two by teleconference and ten in person. Where Taskforce members were not able to attend in person, they often participated in part of the meeting by telephone.
Senior Departmental officials also attended NTER Taskforce meetings. Each meeting was serviced by the NTER Taskforce Secretariat.
|30 Jun 2007
|16-17 Jul 2007
|31 Jul 2007
|16 Aug 2007
|3 Sept 2007
|11-12 Oct 2007
|15 Nov 2007
|17 Jan 2008
|17 Mar 2008
|23 Apr 2008
|22-23 May 2008
|12 Jun 2008
|Mrs Ungunmerr-Baumann||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||By telephone||By telephone||Yes||Yes||Yes||By telephone||11|
|Mr Corbett||Yes||Yes||Yes||By telephone||Yes||Yes||Yes||7|
|Dr Glasson||By telephone||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||By telephone||Yes||Yes||By telephone||11|
|Mr Reeves||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||* Mr Reeves resigned as a member of the Taskforce in October 2007 due to his appointment as a Federal Court Judge. He was not replaced.||5|
|Dr Shergold/ Mr Moran *||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Proxy
|Proxy (Ms Wilson)||Proxy
|Mr Tyrrell/ Mr Burgess **||Yes||Proxy
|Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Proxy (Mr Burgess)||Yes||Yes||Yes||Proxy (Mr Bree)||11|
|TOTAL||7||7 + 1 by telephone||8||7||6||6 + 1 by telephone||4 + 1 by telephone||6 + 1 by telephone||6 + 1 by telephone||7||6||4 + 2 by telephone||12|
* Dr Shergold was a member of the Taskforce until 8 February 2008, when he ceased being the Secretary to the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. His position on the Taskforce was filled by Mr Terry Moran.
** Mr Tyrrell was a member of the Taskforce until 31 January 2008, when he retired. His position on the Taskforce was filled by Mr Mike Burgess, his successor as Chief Executive of the Northern Territory Department of the Chief Minister.
Appendix C - Speaking engagements and meetings - Dr Gordon
|3 Jul 2007||Reconciliation Australia, Canberra|
|25 Jul 2007||Meeting with Minister McAdam and Pat Dodson, Parliament House, Darwin|
|1 Aug 2007||Meeting with NPY Women's Council, Alice Springs|
|7 Aug 2007||Meeting with Chief Minister, Parliament House, with Maj. Gen. Chalmers,
|31 Aug 2007||Marymead Early Childhood Conference, Canberra|
|6 Sep 2007||Aboriginal Benefits Account Meeting (ABA) re intervention issues, Darwin|
|7 Sep 2007||Yirrkala - Women's Resource Centre re intervention issues|
|10 Sep 2007||Leadership Seminar - FaHCSIA staff|
|11 Sep 2007||NT Local Government Advisory Board, Voyages, with Major General Chalmers, Alice Springs|
|18 Sep 2007||David Wirrpanda Foundation re youth programs and the NTER, Perth|
|19 Sep 2007||Speaker at Centrelink Leadership Meeting, QBE House, Perth|
|8 Oct 2007||Meeting with North Australian Aboriginal Family Violence Legal Services (NAAFVLS), Alice Springs|
|8 Oct 2007||Meeting with Central Australian Youth Link UP Service (CAYLUS) reference group members, Alice Springs|
|16 Oct 2007||Address to GBM's and CEB's, Alice Springs|
|30 Oct 2007||Meeting, WA Police Women's Advisory body re intervention issues and leadership, Perth|
|14 Nov 2007||Speaker on the NTER at the WA Police Conference, Broome|
|16 Nov 2007||Speaker, APSC SES breakfast seminar, Canberra|
|16 Nov 2007||Meeting with Lynelle Briggs, Public Service Commissioner, Canberra|
|21 Nov 2007||Presentation and Hospital Tour, JB Oration, Sydney Children's Hospital|
|27 Nov 2007||National Indigenous Intelligence Task Force Conference, Alice Springs|
|29 Nov 2007||Meeting with Air Chief Marshall Angus Houston, Chief of the Defence Force|
|17-18 Jan 2008||Meeting with FaHCSIA and OATSIH staff|
|24 Jan 2008||Meeting with Marian Scrymgour - NT Emergency Response and Child Protection, Parliament House, Darwin|
|1 Feb 2008||Speaker at Council of Elders/NORFORCE Darwin|
|2 Feb 2008||Speaker, NORFORCE, Darwin|
|8 Feb 2008||Meeting with Senator Crossin, supported by Jack Crosby. Also in attendance,
Maj. Gen. Chalmers and Brian Stacey, Darwin Ops Centre
|13 Feb 2008||Tiwi Land Council, Nguiu, meeting and visit to new college|
|14 Feb 2008||Methodist Ladies College, Perth|
|5 Mar 2008||Speech to GBM's, Darwin|
|5 Mar 2008||Breakfast - Minister Macklin, Maj. Gen. Chalmers and Miriam Rose Baumann, Holiday Inn Esplanade, Darwin|
|5 Mar 2008||Meeting with Minister Scrymgour, Miriam Rose also attended, Parliament House, Darwin|
|5 Mar 2008||Meeting with Minister Ludwig and Maj. Gen. Chalmers, Darwin|
|13 Mar 2008||Meeting with FACS re Child Protection|
|17 Mar 2008||Meeting, NIDAC, Ted Wilkes, Canberra|
|18 Mar 2008||Meeting with Tony Abbott, Opposition spokesman on Indigenous Affairs, Canberra|
|1 Apr 2008||Speaker, Australian Public Service Commission WA, Sector Leadership Conference, Burswood Resort, Perth|
|10 Apr 2008||Meeting with Centrelink Liaison, Mark Wellington, Darwin|
|16 Apr 2008||Australian Crime Commission presentation with Maj. Gen. Chalmers, Darwin|
|16 Apr 2008||Meeting with Russell Dawson, CEO Warruwi Council|
|19-20 Apr 2008||2020 Summit, Canberra|
|22 Apr 2008||Speaker at Australian Association of Social Workers Rose Garden Seminar, Canberra|
|28 Apr 2008||NAPCAN meeting regarding pornography, Darwin|
|2 May 2008||Study Exchange Program (Ireland) with Maj. Gen. Chalmers and Mrs Ungunmerr-Baumann, organised by the NT Chief Minister's Department, Darwin|
|11 May 2008||Meeting with Rex Hume, CDEP Coordinator in the Nauiyu community. Mrs Ungunmerr-Baumann also attended. Meeting took place in Daly River|
|16 May 2008||Meeting with National Indigenous Intelligence Task Force, Alice Springs|
|16 May 2008||Meeting with NPY Women's Council representatives, Alice Springs|
|20 May 2008||Governor General Michael Jeffery and Mrs Jeffery in Ops Centre Darwin, meeting also with Major General Chalmers and staff|
|21 May 2008||Spoke to NORFORCE recruits, Darwin|
|21 May 2008||Spoke to army cadets, Darwin camp|
|3 Jun 2008||Speaker - Australian Defence Force (ADF) Indigenous Recruitment Strategy Conference, Alice Springs|
|6 Jun 2008||Beswick Women, child protection issues|
|6-7 Jun 2008||Barunga Festival, Barunga|
|10 Jun 2008||Speaker, Inaugural Leadership Across Boarders programme, 8-13 June, APSC, Sydney|
|10 Jun 2008||Address to Sydney Institute, Sydney|
|11 Jun 2008||Meeting with Barbara Livesey and Jason Glanville from Reconciliation Australia|
|17 Jun 2008||Reconciliation Forum, Kalgoorlie WA|
|18 Jun 2008||GBM recall, Darwin|
|19 Jun 2008||Bennelong Society Annual Conference, Melbourne|
|23 Jun 2008||Speaker at FaHCSIA's "Next Step' Forum for Emerging Indigenous Leaders", Dongara|
|3 Jul 2008||Aboriginal Male Health Summit, invited to Outcomes Day as Chair of NTER, Alice Springs|
Appendix D - Interviews and media - Dr Gordon
|4 Jul 2007||Telephone interview, Paul Wiles, CAAMA|
|5 Jul 2007||Telephone interview, Patricia Karvelas, The Australian|
|12 Jul 2007||Telephone interview, Dawn Gibson, The West Australian, regarding arrests in Halls creek|
|12 Jul 2007||Telephone interview, Daryl Manzie, Territory FM - Making communities safe for children|
|16 Jul 2007||Telephone interview, Simon Kearney, The Australian. Maj Gen Chalmers present|
|16 Jul 2007||Telephone interview, Sarah Hawke, ABC TV. Maj Gen Chalmers present|
|17 Jul 2007||Interview, Paul Wiles, CAAMA - Maj. Gen. Chalmers also present|
|17 Jul 2007||Kirsty Nancarrow, ABC Radio - Extensive interview about NTER issues and issue in WA|
|23 Jul 2007||On the ground interview with Tim Easton, ABC - Maj. Gen. Chalmers also present|
|23 Jul 2007||On the ground interview with Simon Kearney, The Australian - Maj. Gen. Chalmers also present|
|27 Jul 2007||AFL Live cross via Telephone - National Indigenous Recoding Service|
|31 Jul 2007||Interview Amanda O'Brien, The Australian (Perth) - WA angle on NTERT. Article in the Australian regarding a mini summit a must for region|
|1 Aug 2007||Phone discussion with ABC Darwin re: health, police, permits.|
|2 Aug 2007||Phone interview with ABC Alice Springs re: CLC Meeting|
|3 Aug 2007||AFL Live cross via Telephone - National Indigenous Recoding Service|
|7 Aug 2007||Meeting with 'Living Black", steps of Parliament House, Video Journalist - Angela Bates, Darwin|
|7 Aug 2007||Top End Aboriginal Broadcasting Australia telephone interview, Darwin|
|10 Aug 2007||Rinkje Boothman leadership interview, Diplomat Hotel, Canberra|
|17 Aug 2007||Interview by various media during visit to Papunya, hosted by Alison Anderson MP|
|24 Aug 2007||Telephone interview, Paul Wiles, CAAMA regarding NTERT land permit issues|
|28 Aug 2007||Telephone interview, Sue Daniels, Life Matters, ABC National, regarding child safety and NTERT|
|11 Sep 2007||SBS and AAP - Handover of the Message Stick from Papunya to the Minister, Canberra|
|12 Sep 2007||Provided The West Australian with an update of NTER issues|
|28 Sep 2007||Interview with Sarah Curnow, Four Corners - Maj. Gen. Chalmers also present re: dealing with communities, success & differing points of view|
|15 Oct 2007||Live interview with Sarah Curnow, Four Corners. Maj. Gen. Chalmers also present, re: intervention generally|
|18 Oct 2007||Interview on ABC TV Difference of Opinion, Melbourne|
|3 Dec 2007||Interview with Lew Griffiths, Freelance PR. Maj.Gen. Chalmers also present|
|14 Dec 2007||Interview with Donna Odegaard, Radio Larrakia re: measures of the intervention and what this means for communities|
|20 Jan 2008||Telephone interview, Dawn Gibson, The West Australian re NTER and other issues|
|24 Jan 2008||Interview, Darren Coyne, Koori Mail, Maj Gen Chalmers also attended|
|1 Feb 2008||Informal discussion, Natasha Robinson, The Australian, Maj. Gen. Chalmers also attended|
|4 Feb 2008||Interview with The Age for a major feature|
|14 Feb 2008||Interview with Eleanor Hall, The World Today, ABC Radio, re: reaction to apology, update on intervention work and importance of bi-partisan approach, practical aspects of implementing on the ground|
|15 Mar 2008||SBS Insight Program taping, Sydney|
|28 Mar 2008||Telephone interview with Natasha Robinson, The Australian re: Yunupingu's comments about missionary style dormitories in schools|
|28 Apr 2008||Interview with John Connell, Darwin|
|10 Apr 2008||Telephone interview, Barry Nichols, ABC Radio, Alice Springs - Regarding the way the intervention is being responded to in the communities|
|14 Apr 2008||Record ABC Lateline interview, Darwin re: follow up surgeries in Alice Springs Maj. Gen. Chalmers also attended|
|15 Apr 2008||Telephone interview, Patricia Karvelas, The Australian - regarding, how the intervention is progressing|
|28 Apr 2008||Interview, John Connell, Radio RTE, Ireland. The intervention and the response in communities.|
|28 Apr 2008||Telephone interview, Patricia Karvelas, The Australian - regarding proposed Indigenous national body and comments in The Age newspaper|
|28 Apr 2008||Telephone interview, Sarah Smiles, The Age, regarding calls for National Indigenous Body to replace ATSIC|
|12 May 2008||Interview with a German Student from the ANU - case study for Masters on NTER|
|15 May 2008||Interview with Dawn Gibson, The West Australian|
|26 May 2008||Background 'off record' discussion with Natasha Robinson, The Australian - in preparation for visit to Central Australian Communities. Maj. Gen. Chalmers also attended|
|4 Jun 2008||Interview, The Australian - Intervention reaches critical point, Alice Springs|
|10 Jun 2008||ABC TV interview for four-part series on “Howard Years” and my role in the intervention|
|11 Jun 2008||Margaret Throsby Program, ABC Radio National - Intervention|
|17 Jun 2008||Interview, ABC Drive Program|
|18 Jun 2008||Pre-record interview with Julie Christensen, ABC Darwin for broadcast 20 June morning program.|
|18 Jun 2008||Pre-record interview with Alex Barwick, ABC Radio Alice Springs for broadcast 20 June, on NTERT Issues including child health, sexual abuse, and law and order.|
|18 Jun 2008||Pre-record television interview with Anne Barker, Lateline, on general NTERT issues for broadcast on 20 June.|
|18 Jun 2008||Interview with Patricia Karvelas, The Australian. regarding speech to Bennelong Society|
|18 Jun 2008||Interview with Natasha Robinson, Australian, on NTERT issues especially child abuse|
|18 Jun 2008||Interview with Russell Skelton, The Age, on general NTERT issues|
Appendix E - Interviews and media - MajGen Chalmers
|16 Jul 2007||Telephone interview, Simon Kearney, The Australian|
|16 Jul 2007||Telephone interview, Sarah Hawke, ABC TV|
|17 Jul 2007||Interview, Paul Wiles, CAAMA|
|18 Jul 2007||ABC Radio National - interview on progress to date. Australia Talks program with Paul Barclay|
|19 Jul 2007||Media conference Alice Springs|
|23 Jul 2007||On the ground interview with Tim Easton, ABC|
|23 Jul 2007||On the ground interview with Simon Kearney, The Australian|
|31 Jul 2007||Media conference Alice Springs|
|14 Aug 2007||Discussion with Kelly Baylis, TEABA, AFL Live Cross|
|16 Aug 2007||Media Conference Alice Springs|
|16 Aug 2007||Operational update with Paul Wiles CAAMA|
|22 Aug 2007||Phone interview with Patrick, National Radio News, regarding NTER|
|6 Sep 2007||Media conference Alice Springs|
|10 Sep 2007||Interviews and photos with Simon Kearney, The Australian, whilst in Titjikala|
|10 Sep 2007||Interviews and photos with ABC Darwin, whilst in Titjikala|
|12 Sep 2007||Interview with Kirsty Parker, Koori Mail re: progress to date and feelings of community|
|12 Sep 2007||Prerecording for CAAMA airing on 14/9/07 re: CDEP and roll of army|
|27 Sep 2007||Media conference Alice Springs|
|28 Sep 2007||Interview with Paul Ham, correspondent for Sunday Times London|
|28 Sep 2007||Interview with Sarah Curnow, Four Corners - Dr Sue Gordon also present|
|4 Oct 2007||Interview with Esther Blank, Focus - Germany|
|10 Oct 2007||Media conference|
|15 Oct 2007||Live interview with Sarah Curnow, Four Corners. Dr Sue Gordon also present|
|18 Oct 2007||Interview with ABC TV/Radio regarding Government Business Manager conference|
|19 Oct 2007||Media conference|
|12 Nov 2007||Media conference|
|12 Nov 2007||Interview with Murray McLaughlin, 7:30 Report|
|3 Dec 2007||Interview with Lew Griffiths, Freelance PR. Dr Sue Gordon also interviewed at this time|
|12 Dec 2007||Phone interview with Rohan Barwick, ABC, Alice Springs re: intervention measures and how Govt will affect those|
|19 Dec 2007||Media conference - Operational update Darwin Media|
|18 Jan 2008||Telephone interview, Paul Toohey, The Bulletin Magazine, regarding review of NTER operations|
|22 Jan 2008||Interview, Ben Langford, NT News, regarding selling of store cards for cash|
|24 Jan 2008||Interview, Darren Coyne, Koori Mail|
|1 Feb 2008||Interview with Lindsay Murdoch, The Age; intervention update|
|1 Feb 2008||Interview, Emma Cook, SBS 'Living Black', regarding income management roll-out in Alice Springs town camps|
|1 Feb 2008||Informal discussion, Natasha Robinson, The Australian|
|6 Feb 2008||Interview with Richard Trudgen, Yolgnu Radio; regarding the intervention rollout in East Arnhem Land. To be broadcast in language|
|6 Feb 2008||Interview with Jasmine Afianos, Tennant & District Times re Child Health Checks|
|18 Feb 2008||Operational update for The Australian|
|3 Mar 2008||Interview with Eric Tlozek, ABC Alice Springs re Child Health Checks in Alice Town Camps|
|6 Mar 2008||SBS Insight Program|
|7 Mar 2008||Interview with Barry Nichols, ABC Alice Springs re update on intervention measures and CHC follow up activity|
|11 Mar 2008||Interview with Donna Odegaard, Radio Larrakia. Series of informative interviews to be conducted with Radio Larrakia|
|10 Apr 2008||Media Conference (Minister Macklin, Sue Gordon, MAJGEN Chalmers) to address Container issue|
|14 Apr 2008||Interview with Julia Christensen ABC Radio Darwin, regarding comments made by Bob Bagnall re food security in Elliot and the Bush Order system|
|14 Apr 2008||Interview with Leigh Sales, Lateline, Alice Springs|
|8 May 2008||Interview with Carla Hicks ARTE (German/French TV channel), re the perception of the Intervention 10 months on|
|12 May 2008||Interview with Donna Odegaard, Radio Larrakia|
|26 May 2008||Background 'off record' discussion with Natasha Robinson, The Australian - in preparation for visit to Central Australian Communities|
|18 Jun 2008||Interview with Murray McLachlan, 7:30 Report, re first 12 months of the intervention|
|18 Jun 2008||Interview with Genevieve Hussy, ABC TV Darwin|
|18 Jun 2008||Interview with Sarah Smiles, The Age, re first 12 months of the intervention|