The Federal Government and the Coalition of Peaks recently launched the first Implementation plan since the reboot of the Closing the Gap campaign.
It is the first time the National Agreement on Closing the Gap has been developed in partnership between Australian governments and the Coalition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peak Organisations (the Coalition of Peaks).
Prime Minister Scott Morrison also announced more than $1 billion over five years of new funding measures to go towards initiatives that speak to the campaign’s targets including health services, early childhood support, education, and the empowerment of Aboriginal Community-Controlled Organisations.
“This is a plan that’s been led together with Indigenous leaders, to back Indigenous communities,” the Prime Minister said.
“When we overhauled the Closing the Gap program, we set four priority reforms to fundamentally change how governments and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people work together. This Implementation Plan details how governments will do our part to achieve those reforms.”
The Minister for Indigenous Australians Ken Wyatt said the measures included $378.6 million for a new redress scheme for Stolen Generations survivors from the Northern Territory, the Australian Capital Territory and Jervis Bay Territory.
“The scheme, for living survivors who were removed as children from their families in then-Commonwealth territories, includes a one-off payment in recognition of the harm caused by forced removal and gives each survivor the opportunity, should they wish, to tell their story and receive an individual apology,” Minister Wyatt said.
The Lead Convener of the Coalition of Peaks Pat Turner welcomes the new funding to close the gap in life outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and looks forward to working with the Commonwealth to ensure that funding is delivered consistent with the Priority Reforms in the National Agreement.
“Today is another step forward under the historic partnership between the Coalition of Peaks and Australian governments. It shows what can be achieved when the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community-controlled leaders from across the country come together to partner with governments,” said Ms Pat Turner.
“We are pleased that the Commonwealth’s Implementation Plan invests more than $1 billion to support implementation of the Priority Reforms and help close gaps across the socio-economic areas targeted in the National Agreement. The investment includes some very significant initiatives important to our peoples and to our wellbeing like the breakthrough in providing reparations to survivors of the Stolen Generations in territories which the Commonwealth was historically responsible for – long called for but long denied until now.”
“We have a long way to go to seeing improvements in the lives of our peoples across the country and for the gap in life outcomes to be closed, but today is an important step forward in making this a reality.”
You can see the Coalition of Peaks full Implementation Plan here