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Greens call for action on Indigenous rights

Media Release
Sarah Hanson-Young 17 Nov 2007

“We need to make a new beginning in the struggle for justice and
rights for Indigenous Australians,” said Sarah Hanson-Young, Greens
Senate candidate for South Australia, today in Adelaide.

Ms Hanson-Young attended the rally on the steps of Parliament House
as part of today’s National Day of Action against the NT Intervention
legislation, calling for a fresh approach to tackling the issues of
justice and inequality for Indigenous Australians.

“For the 11 years of the Howard Government we have seen Indigenous
rights going backwards. This must change,” said Ms Hanson-Young.

“We need long-term solutions that address the immediate need for improved health and education in Indigenous communities.”

The Greens have released a policy initiative outlining their vision
for the way forward on the Northern Territory intervention, in which
the Greens called on the next Federal Government to:

* Focus on protecting children using evidence-based, culturally appropriate programs.
* Restore the Racial Discrimination Act (RDA).
* Restore the integrity of the NT Land Rights Act and commit to protect Native Title rights.
* Negotiate genuinely with Aboriginal communities and support existing community efforts.
* Develop a comprehensive plan to address the underlying social and economic issues.

“Our approach on the Northern Territory intervention is consistent
with our approach to all Indigenous issues because it is based on
proper consultation with Aboriginal people and on the need for a
comprehensive policy approach that deals with the underlying causes,”
said Ms Hanson-Young.

“The first recommendation of the Little Children Are Sacred report
was to consult with Indigenous people - Howard and Rudd have failed to
do this.

“The Greens are committed to working with Indigenous communities to
ensure a safe, healthy and happy future for Australia’s Indigenous
peoples.

“Until this Greens approach is adopted by all Governments, we are
destined to continue the mistakes of the past,” Ms Hanson-Young
concluded.

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