SNAICC Chairperson Sharron Williams has congratulated Adam Giles on becoming Australia’s first Indigenous head of government.
“This is an historic event for Australia. It is a reflection of how much more involved Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander citizens have become in the parliamentary process — both as voters and politicians — in the past 30 years,” Ms Williams said.
“We congratulate Mr Giles and wish him the very best. We hope that his elevation to Chief Minister heralds a new direction for the NT Government in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs.
“SNAICC has been critical of the actions of the Government in the past few months, particularly its decision to slash the budget of Strong Aboriginal Families, Together (SAF,T), the peak body for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and families in the NT.
“The creation of SAF,T was a far-reaching recommendation of the Board of Inquiry into the NT child protection system, which found a system unable to cope and children in the territory significantly more disadvantaged than their counterparts elsewhere in Australia.
“SNAICC is concerned that the NT Government has fundamentally moved away from the inquiry’s recommendations and the spirit of bi-partisanship the authors called for as essential to deliver long-term sustainable solutions for children and families in the NT.
“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are entitled to feel proud about Mr Giles’s rise to leader of the government. Indigenous voters in the NT — so instrumental in the Country Liberals’ election win — are also entitled to expect more from his government for their children and families.
“Mr Giles’s elevation creates an important opportunity to engage with Aboriginal organisations and families — the most disadvantaged Australians — and empower them to deliver solutions to the serious issues that confront them.”
For more information: Frank Hytten, SNAICC CEO, on (0432) 345 652;
Emma Sydenham, SNAICC Policy Manager,
(0415) 188 990
Giuseppe Stramandinoli, SNAICC Media Officer,
(0419) 508 125