It was a sad juxtaposition in April this year, that Australia seemed so intent on mourning a 99 year old British royal, but was largely unmoved by the four First Nations’ deaths in custody that had occured in 2021 alone. At the time of publication that figure has shockingly risen to seven.
Reconciliation week is once again upon us. Some would say Reconciliation has lost its mojo, its spizzaz, is an old overused word that is out of date, and even that it has made very little difference to First Nations Peoples.
When I was at primary school we had the old Jacaranda Atlas. The one where the British Empire (sorry I mean Commonwealth) was all pinky-red spread throughout the world. It even had a series of maps of Australia underlining the process of ‘exploration’.
Dr Peter Lewis
This week we had Budget night, with the anticipated cash splurge which is expected to set the Government up for re-election in the next 12-months.
There is limited evidence of the Cashless Debit Card’s (CDC) effectiveness and mounting evidence of its harmful impacts. Nevertheless, the Federal Government has extended and expanded trials again and again since they were first announced in 2016.
On 1 May 2021, Tasmanians will head to the polls to decide which party will hold state government for the next four years. The State Liberal Premier, Peter Gutwein, has called the election a year early to try and take advantage of the apparent electoral benefit for incumbent governments handling the crisis of Covid-19. While there has been limited polling in the State over the last 12 months, there has been a significant tightening of the polls since the last poll in February this year… the outcome is much harder to predict now (and every vote counts).
Paul Wright and Ashleigh Jordan
Cultural warning: This article contains names and images of deceased Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
This month marks 30 years since the final report of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody. The report consists of five volumes, several regional reports and 339 recommendations. It included 99 individual death reports of Aboriginal deaths in custody that occurred between 1 January, 1980 and 31 May, 1989.
Amanda Porter and Eddie Cubillo
It was the best of times; it was the worst of times. Australia in 2021 is a Dickensian periodical morphing into a ‘choose your own adventure’ where the state of things is entirely open to your worldview.
When late in 2020, the Government introduced legislation to extend the Cashless Debit Card (CDC) in all existing sites and provide for the transition of income management participants across the Northern Territory and Cape York region to the CDC, it became known that an evaluation of the Program had been completed but was not being made public.
Focus has rightly been on the very serious issues of sexual violence that have been raised regarding the Federal Parliament and historically with the Attorney-General, Christian Porter.
However, there is already a risk that the profound importance of what has been announced in Victoria this week by the First Peoples Assembly and the State government – the Yoo-rrook Justice Commission – which will be the most comprehensive Truth Telling process in Australia since colonisation began in 1788, might be missed.