New NT Intervention laws that extend welfare quarantining [only item]

– Special feature

Stop the Intervention:
Racial Discrimination Act – New Legislation
[Includes Comments by:
* Les Malezer
* Greens Senator Rachel Siewert
* Eva Cox, Women for Wik
* Marlene Hodder, IRAG
* Alexis Wright
* Michele Madigan
* Michael Anderson
* Stop the Intervention Collective Sydney
* Neil E Gillespie, Chief Executive Officer, ALRM
* Richard Downs, spokesperson for the Alyawarr walk-off camp
* Professor Alastair Nicholson,
former Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia
* The Aboriginal Support Group – Manly Warringah Pittwater
Also includes Links to:
* Government info on the new RDA Legislation
* Information about the Consultations
* Info on Inquiry into Social Security and Other Legislation
Amendment (Welfare Reform and Reinstatement of Racial
Discrimination Act) Bill 2009 etc
* Submissions to the Senate Inquiry]

– Media Release

Stop the Intervention: Aboriginal rights advocates support
Greens move to vote against new NT Intervention laws
9 Feb 10: “Prominent Aboriginal rights supporters including
Jumbunna House of Learning UTS, The Aboriginal Legal Rights
Movement (SA), the CFMEU (Construction Forestry Mining and
Energy Union), ‘concerned Australians’, The Working Group
for Aboriginal Rights, Eva Cox and Stop the Intervention
Collective Sydney are giving their full support to the
Greens Senators’ plans to vote against new NT Intervention
legislation that extends welfare quarantine.”

– News

SMH: NT’s welfare powers could extend to all
7 Feb 10: “PLANS to extend aspects of the Northern
Territory intervention in indigenous communities to all
welfare recipients – first in the territory, then
countrywide – could become the federal government’s next
battle in the Senate.”

SMH: Call to stop compulsory income quarantining
8 Feb 10: “THE government’s plan to roll out compulsory
income management across Australia for long-term welfare
recipients, including sole parents and young people, is
based on flimsy and contradictory evidence from the
Northern Territory intervention and should be stopped, the
nation’s peak welfare organisation [Australian Council of
Social Service] says.”

SMH: Income program a cloak for racism: professor
10 Feb 10: “THE federal government’s plan to extend income
management of welfare payments beyond the Northern
Territory is a ”clumsily disguised and cynical attempt”
to perpetuate racial discrimination against indigenous
Australians, a former chief justice of the Family Court of
Australia [Alastair Nicholson] said yesterday.”

Australian: Coalition to block `watered down’ welfare reform
10 Feb 10: “THE opposition has threatened to block
government welfare reform plans over concerns that key
aspects of the Northern Territory intervention will be
watered down. Community Services Minister Jenny Macklin
released proposals last November to extend income
management across the Territory from July 1 and later
expand it nationally.”

See: http://www.liberal.org.au/news.php?Id=4717

– Comments about the new RDA Legislation

Stop the Intervention: Les Malezer
4 Feb 10: ” … The legislation introduced by the government
is unfortunately not primarily intended to reinstate the
RDA, it is intended to find another way to discriminate
against the rights of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait
Islander people and to continue the hostile approach to our
rights to self-determination. Now is not the time to debate
this point but the government has made clear its intention
to not change policy in the NT or elsewhere. In fact the
government is making an attempt to extend non-democratic
principles, paternal decision-making and impacts upon our
peoples around the entire country. …”

Stop the Intervention: Greens Senator Rachel Siewert
5 Feb 10: “… the Greens objected strongly to the
suspension of the Racial Discrimination Act under the NTER.
We were the only party to vote against it being suspended –
the ALP in opposition voted to suspend it. … These laws
are introducing the most major changes ever seen in
Australia to our welfare system. The Introduction of
national income quarantining attacks the basic tenet and
fundamental underlying philosophy of the inalienability of
social security entitlements. On this basis alone there is
a compelling argument that such wide-sweeping changes
require proper parliamentary scrutiny. … “

Eva Cox
Pushing bad policy against the evidence
Crikey Blog: http://blogs.crikey.com.au/thestump/2010/02/05/pushing-bad-policy-against-the-evidence/
Stop the Intervention: http://stoptheintervention.org/rda-new-legislation/eva-cox-women-for-wik-5-2-10
5 Feb 10: “Sole parents and the unemployed beware! Jenny
Macklin is trying to take half your income away. From July
in the NT, and 2011 for the rest of the country, she wants
to implement the most drastic change to our social security
system ever. And almost nobody knows about it. She is
expecting support from the very conservative Opposition
front bench to have the legislation passed quickly so she
can impose these new measures as soon as possible despite
almost universal opposition from a wide range of groups.”

Stop the Intervention:
Marlene Hodder, Intervention Rollback Action Group
An appeal to the public regarding the proposed Social Security legislation
5 Feb 10: “I have just witnessed FaHCSIA staff present
their case to the Senate Inquiry into the proposed Social
Security amendment legislation in Canberra. I am shocked
that obviously high up bureaucrats can speak with such
expertness on the justification for imposing such measures
initially on all people (mainly Aboriginal) in the Northern
Territory and possibly eventually on other ‘disadvantaged’
areas around the country, as the minister deems fit. …
I am appealing to all people to write to their local
newspaper or contact their local Federal member and/or
Senator to express their concern at this drastic change in
social security in this country.”

Stop the Intervention: Alexis Wright, Author
Your help on the Racial Discrimination Act so we don’t stand still
4 Feb 10: “I am writing to you to back the letter sent to
you today from Les Malezer. I received advice of your email
earlier today and I could not believe that this Government
could be so blind and deaf to how most Indigenous people
think about the NTER, to expect us to back the suggestions
in your email.”

Stop the Intervention: Michele Madigan
5 Feb 10: “Please don’t allow this legislation to pass in
its present form. … I have to point out that simply
nullifying the Racial Discrimination Act- for example by
extending blanket Income Management to non Indigenous
people as the Bill intends, is not a justification for then
being able to reinstate such an Act. It seems surely that
discrimination is merely extended to become also class
discrimination … “

Michael Anderson
Welfare changes will cause survival crime and more child removals
Stop the Intervention: http://stoptheintervention.org/rda-new-legislation/michael-anderson-7-2-10
Indymedia Australia: http://indymedia.org.au/2010/02/07/welfare-changes-will-cause-survival-crime-and-more-child-removals
7 Feb 10: “These amendments will cause some very rude
shocks to Australia’s poor. Firstly, they will permit the
minister to identify any particular location in Australia
and impose welfare quarantining there. … It should also
be known that based on the $150 million administration
costs of the quarantining program across the Northern
Territory, covering about 10,000 people, it costs around
$15,000 per person to administer.”

Stop the Intervention:
Neil E Gillespie, CEO, Aboriginal Legal Rights Movement Inc
9 Feb 10: “I find the continuation of the racist NT
Intervention by the Rudd Government disappointing. I remind
everyone that the Intervention is about access to
Aboriginal land by business interests (mining) and the
location of a dump for uranium waste. SA, WA and Qld will
not accept uranium waste so we are deluding ourselves the
Intervention is anything but accessing Aboriginal land in
the NT. It has NOTHING to do with children.”

Stop the Intervention:
Richard Downs, spokesperson for the Alyawarr walk-off camp
Open letter to Jenny Macklin from Alyawarr protest camp
9 Feb 10: “Dear Minister Macklin. Stop making excuses. We
have read a recent email from your department appealing for
support for your new Intervention legislation. It pretends
your proposed laws will end discrimination. We know that
this is a lie. If you really cared you could act now. Using
Ministerial powers granted by the Intervention laws you
could immediately de-prescribe communities, grant mass
exemptions from Income Management and declare that the NT
Anti-Discrimination Act applies to Intervention

Stop the Intervention: Professor Alastair Nicholson,
former Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia
9 Feb 10: “What is clear is that this is little more than a
ruse to overcome the provisions of the RDA and that the
real targets of the income management scheme are likely to
be Aboriginal people including Aboriginal people living
beyond the NT. It is little more than a clumsily disguised
and cynical attempt to perpetuate racial discrimination.
This in itself involves a breach of the Racial
Discrimination Act as it is clearly indirect

Stop the Intervention:
Aboriginal Support Group – Manly Warringah Pittwater
10 Feb 10: “There are worrying reports of impending Federal
Legislation which may shortly extended “income management”
to the entire country. We encourage our members and all
those concerned about human rights to attend the Rally
against the NT Intervention this Saturday, 13th Feb – the
2nd anniversary of the Apology to the Stolen Generations
when Kevin Rudd said”… this Parliament resolves that the
injustices of the past must never, never happen again.”

– Radio

CAAMA Radio News
(Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association):
11 Feb 10: “A former chief justice of the Family Court of
Australia says a Rudd Labour Government plan to extend
income management of welfare payment beyond the Northern
Territory is a “sloppy, cheap and unfair solution” that
reflects lazy politics.”

CAAMA Radio News
(Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association):
10 Feb 10: “NTCOSS has called on the Federal Government to
stop forced welfare quarantining.”

CAAMA Radio News
(Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association):
9 Feb 10: “Rudd Government predicted to roll out income
managment to populated Aboriginal towns and communities
across the country.”

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