It is considerably cooler than yesterday, and quiet all round, especially here on the blog. It was good to see Jeannie visiting from Adelaide at South Sydney Uniting Church today, and coincidentally (given that link to last year) I have just had a haircut too. The theme today, very relevant here in Redfern-Waterloo-Surry Hills, was Make indigenous poverty history.
“Make indigenous poverty history by 2015,” challenged Graeme Mundine, Executive Secretary of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Ecumenical Commission, speaking about NATSIEC’s new campaign aimed at the reduction of poverty experienced by Australia’s indigenous peoples.
“The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) do not specifically target indigenous peoples but indigenous peoples are often the ones most affected by extreme poverty and usually rank at the bottom of most social and economic indicators,” Mr Mundine said.
“As we campaign to achieve the Millennium Development Goals we must not forget the world’s indigenous peoples.
“The poorest in Australian society are the traditional owners of this land. Even though Australia is a rich country there are those who live in poverty and who do not enjoy the same level of health, wealth and even life expectancy as that of the majority of Australians.
“All key social and economic indicators show that Australian indigenous peoples are living in poverty: our children are twice as likely to die in infancy, and we suffer from more preventable diseases, higher unemployment, lower house ownership, lower engagement with education and we are six times as likely to be murdered.
“Poverty is a very real and debilitating experience for many of our people.”
Mr Mundine said, “The MDGs must be aligned with poverty reduction strategies that address the particular needs of Indigenous peoples. Without the meaningful participation of indigenous peoples our marginalisation and exclusion will continue.
“Here in Australia we must compare the living standards and levels of health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples with those of the rest of Australia – not to the poorest of the world’s poor.
“Now more than two hundred years after colonisation we have an opportunity to stand up together and say enough! We will not tolerate the poverty that the poorest of our society currently live in.
“We will do whatever it takes to ensure that the indigenous peoples of Australia have the same opportunities to live as long, to create as much wealth, to see their children grow into healthy and productive adults as non – Indigenous people do.”
Mr Mundine concluded, “We must work as hard for our own poor as we do for those overseas and make indigenous poverty history by 2015.”
After that to Sirdan’s by bus with Lord Malcolm for a roast leg of lamb. Which some may see as ironic, but I enjoyed it nonetheless.
Web site woes
And speaking of indigenous matters, my nephew rang from Queensland. He has been revamping his Great Green Way Eco Tours site, Aboriginal owned and operated, and yes he is the owner and operator. Odd things are happening to the site in Firefox and Opera, though it is OK in IE6. For a start, in Firefox and Opera the links don’t work yet. I’m sending the URL to Lord Malcolm to look at, but maybe some of you out there can see what you think Warren (my nephew) needs to do to fix it. Oh dear! I stuffed the link to Warren’s site; but now the link doesn’t just send you back here! How embarrassing!
Leave a comment if that is the case.
Warren has put up a second page, which looks good, works even in Opera, and furthermore the links seem to work too. The page is also very informative: “Some of the plant resources utilised by Aboriginal people follow. (Please note that some plants contain toxins and irritants. Some plants require treatment prior to eating and not all are edible! DO NOT TRY ANY OF THESE WITHOUT PROPER SUPERVISION.)” Warren is an expert botanist.
And even later