Articles on Closing the Gap

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Indigenous prisoners perform a welcome ceremony at the 2014 opening of Darwin’s $500 million prison, which is likely to be full by 2018. AAP/Neda Vanovac

State of imprisonment: if locking ‘em up is the goal, NT’s a success

The Northern Territory stands out for having one of the highest imprisonment rates in the world - much higher even than in the US - and it's hard to argue that this does the community much good.
Despite widespread condemnation, Tony Abbott has defended suggesting people living in remote communities are making a ‘lifestyle choice.’ AAP/Lukas Coch

Don’t be surprised by Abbott’s comments about ‘lifestyle choices’

Abbott's claim that people in remote communities are making a "lifestyle choice" reveals an underlying view that social circumstances are the responsibility of individuals, rather than societies.
Measures to close the gap in Indigenous education outcomes aren’t working. AAP

Closing the Gap in education report card: needs improvement

This year’s update on Closing the Gap presents a picture similar to 2014 in education - there is much work still to be done to improve educational outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students…
Mick Gooda has urged policymakers to learn from their mistakes and adopt a consultative and inclusive approach to Indigenous policy. AAP/Alan Porritt

‘Work with us not for us’ to end the Indigenous policy chaos

Deep funding cuts and uncertainty about government plans have created one of the largest-scale upheavals in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs. That is Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander…
A good diet is essential to maintaining a healthy weight and avoiding the risk factors for many chronic diseases. Rusty Stewart/Flickr

Healthy start: closing the gap on Indigenous childhood obesity

We’ve recently seen some encouraging improvements in closing the gap on Indigenous disadvantage: better educational outcomes, higher child immunisation rates, more health checks, and a 35% drop in the…
Efforts to improve Indigenous students’ academic results aren’t working. AAP

Indigenous education results show need for needs-based funding

Results from the latest Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) show that the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous students has remained the same for the last decade. PISA 2012: How Australia…
The abundant evidence of what works shows the way to help Indigenous Australians build a better future. If only politicians and bureaucrats would heed the findings. AAP/Dan Peled

Closing the Gap: we know what works, so why don’t we do it?

The disappointing data that regularly appears in Closing the Gap reports should raise serious questions about policy development and funding processes. The assumption of media stories and many politicians…
Closing the gap in statistical disadvantage is now the dominant way of framing the relationship between Indigenous and settler Australia, But is it the right way? AAP/Marianna Massey

Indigenous affairs: close the gap, but open the conversation

The sixth annual Closing the Gap statement, delivered to federal parliament earlier this week, had the same message as previous years. There is some progress, some regress and more work needed to achieve…
The Stolen Generation apology represented a highwater mark for Indigenous policy, but silence has settled on this policy area. AAP

After a decade of new dawns, Indigenous policy vision burns out

Five years ago, prime minister Kevin Rudd took to the nation’s driving seat with the historic Stolen Generation apology. With the theme of this year’s NAIDOC (National Aboriginal and Islander Day Observance…
Older Aboriginal Australians are more than 15 times more likely to die of kidney disease than non-Aboriginal Australians. Helen Taylor

Kidney disease in Aboriginal Australians perpetuates poverty

The recent death of the lead singer of Yothu Yindi, is a high-profile example of an event all too common in Aboriginal Australia. Older Aboriginal Australians (40 to 60 years old) are more than 15 times…
Indigenous community jobs aren’t part of the mainstream economy, but they fit the needs of the community well. Kayt Davies

Closing the gap, or making it wider? Putting a value on Indigenous jobs

Among all the school payments and defence cuts, last week’s federal budget also quietly committed an additional $5.2 billion to the government’s Closing the Gap program. It’s a vote of faith from the government…
There are health benefits for indigenous Australians when they live in smaller homeland communities. Flickr/Rusty Stewart

Homeland communities destroyed to save a bit of cash

Government efforts to “close the gap” between indigenous and white Australians ignore the needs of nearly 1000 homeland communities on the Indigenous estate. Australian citizens living at the most remote…

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