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Closing the gap on work: a misframed debate that needs new thinking

How do we get more Aboriginal adults into the workforce? Old thinking needs to be thrown out — Tony Abbott needs a radical new agenda, writes indigenous academic Jon Altman from the Australian National University.

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Abbott’s Closing the Gap speech might be the high point of the year

Tony Abbott’s Closing the Gap speech was one of the best of recent times, but he will have nowhere to hide if results do not improve.

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Justice and closing the gap: the prison target Aboriginal Australia needs

Some Aboriginal leaders say justice targets are needed to help close the gap. The federal government isn’t keeping score yet, but advocates say it’s tied to health outcomes.

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Why neither major party is addressing indigenous poverty

Despit the epidemic of indigenous poverty, neither major party has a comprehensive policy to address it. Jon Altman, professor at ANU’s Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research, says only the Greens have a different approach.

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PromiseWatch 2013: indigenous affairs and closing the gap

Take a look at how the political parties stack up on indigenous affairs. Crikey’s Andrew Crook and CPD researcher Julia Hosking trawl through the parties’ pre-election policies.

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‘Evaluation fetishism’ is not Closing the Gap

With incomplete reporting and many Closing the Gap goals not on track, is the policy really working? Professor Jon Altman of the ANU’s Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research reports.

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Seeking truth from facts in indigenous employment data

There’s plenty of good news in the “closing the gap” report on indigenous employment. But the program outcomes are far from clear, writes ANU’s Professor Jon Altman.

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Where are the indigenous leaders?

Crikey readers weigh in.

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Gillard is wrong, bans won’t stop those ‘rivers of grog’

Grog is destroying lives in Aboriginal communities, but race-based bans don’t work. Julia Gillard wants to re-introduce a list of people banned from buying alcohol but the data doesn’t support her.

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Not closing the gap: indigenous lifespans remain too short

Aborigines are living for about a decade less than non-Aboriginal people. Crikey intern Callum Denness asks the experts what should be done about it.

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Closing the gap? PM left ‘disappointed’ on Aboriginal welfare

Julia Gillard presented the latest report card on indigenous disadvantage today, revealing school kids are struggling, while Aboriginal employment drops. Amber Jamieson and Callum Denness report.

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Black government expenditure — it’s a white thing

The Productivity Commission says its audit of indigenous spending can contribute to better policy making and thus improved outcomes for indigenous Australians. Jon Altman isn’t so sure.

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Parliament reports on indigenous tongues: can they be saved?

The release of the Our Land, Our Languages report could be the start of a new era for Australia’s rich and remarkable indigenous languages. Greg Dickson of Crikey blog Fully (sic) reports.

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NT intervention: what happened to outcomes?

The fifth anniversary of the NT intervention was supposed to be “liberation” day for prescribed communities now supposedly “stabilised, normalised and exited”. Instead it was another day of shame, says Jon Altman.

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NT prescribed communities: not normalised, exited, eliminated

Global evidence suggests that stronger futures for Aboriginal people will require more self-determination, writes professor Jon Altman of the Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research.

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Homelands policy debacle set to continue for a decade

Evidently, the Australian government is keen to assure Aboriginal people living on outstations and homelands that they will receive access to power, water and sewerage and road maintenance, as well as garbage collection, writes Jon Altman, an anthropology research professor at ANU.

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Stronger Futures juggernaut hits some potholes

A juggernaut is a force that is regarded as mercilessly destructive and unstoppable. For many this is an apt metaphor for the Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory bills, writes professor Jon Altman, of ANU’s Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research.

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Closing the gap: policy by numbers a dangerous charade

I have never been comfortable with pick-a-number policy making for indigenous Australia, writes professor Jon Altman, of ANU’s Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research.

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Gillard: from lifeline to the tumbrel in a week

Julia Gillard is continuing to achieve legislative wins even as her prime ministership expires. The tumbrel rolls ever on.

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Cox: how about asking Tent Embassy why they’re so angry?

Why do so few of the media reporters actually ask the Aboriginal demonstrators why they are so angry with being told to change tactics?

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The intervention is dead, long live the intervention

The most recent data on progress suggests that the intervention is failing, at least if its aim is to close gaps of socioeconomic disadvantage between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians in the NT, writes ANU professor Jon Altman.

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Economic rationalism hits the homelands

Outstations/homelands (the terms can be used interchangeably) represent a service delivery headache for the state, but this is mainly due to unimaginative policy approaches, writes Professor Jon Altman.

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Questions Gillard should ask in Alice Springs, but probably won’t

It is four years this month since the Mal Brough emergency intervention in the NT and today the PM goes to Alice Springs to see the “progress” supposedly being made.

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If PM wants to close the gap, why the silence on primary health care?

Next year in the Closing the Gap Report, we want to learn about what the government has been doing to show respect for Aboriginal people and their views and values, write Des Martin, CEO of the Aboriginal Health Council of WA and Gavin Mooney, a health economist

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Crikey Blogs | FEDERAL|

How to really ‘close the gap’

With all the talk about “closing the gap” between mainstream and Aboriginal health and life-expectancy outcomes in this country, the Shalom Gamarada scholarship program is a good start, writes Bob Gosford.

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