Articles on indigenous affairs

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Part of Mandy Martin’s painting Cool Burn (2016): in her painting workshops at Djinkarr, Indigenous rangers brought the threats to their land to life on canvas.

Friday essay: caring for country and telling its stories

Feral cats and pigs, mission grass and climate change - in western Arnhem Land, Indigenous rangers are battling many environmental threats. Through painting and performance, they are also telling 'healthy country' stories.
Tony Abbott’s additional target focusing on school attendance rates has not improved at all since 2014. Neda Vanovac/AAP

Closing the Gap is failing and needs a radical overhaul

The report focus on the government’s own policies fails to acknowledge genuine differences of opinion on key issues such as constitutional recognition and income management.
Children representing the diversity of contemporary multicultural Australia stand near a sign depicting an ‘idealised’ white Australia. Blackwood Recreation Centre, South Australia, 2015. Photo: C. Smith

The markers of everyday racism in Australia

How might an Aboriginal person in the Northern Territory experience racism? There are many material signs that can make a person feel excluded from society.
Paul Keating recognised the significant opportunities – and political risks – the High Court’s Mabo decision presented. National Archives of Australia

Cabinet papers 1992-93: Keating government fights for Indigenous rights on multiple fronts

Cabinet papers reveal the extent to which the Keating government was torn between concern for fiscal responsibility and a desire to tackle Indigenous disadvantage and pursue meaningful reconciliation.
Reviving languages is no easy task – it needs teachers, a staged curriculum and resources.

Reviving Indigenous languages – not as easy as it seems

The government's plan to prioritise the revival of Indigenous languages in New South Wales is a welcome first step. Truly achieving it will take several more.
Policies and services designed to protect Aboriginal children’s cultural connections are not being properly implemented. AAP Image/Dan Peled

Australia failing to safeguard cultural connections for Aboriginal children in out-of-home care

New reports show a widespread lack of care for the cultural needs of many of the 19,000 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in child protection and out-of-home care.
Malcolm Turnbull explicitly chose to assume the mantle of his predecessor Tony Abbott as ‘prime minister for Indigenous affairs’. AAP/Mick Tsikas

Can Turnbull change course in Indigenous affairs?

For many, relations between Indigenous Australians and the government are best described as being in a state of crisis.
Of 1082 Indigenous specific. programs identified in the report, 92% have never been evaluated to see if they are achieving their objectives. AAP/Dan Peled

How to get a better bang for the taxpayers’ buck in all sectors, not only Indigenous programs

A new report highlights how little we know about what works and what doesn't when it comes to publicly-funded Indigenous programs. It's a similar story in other policy areas – but we can do better.

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