Are They Stand Alone Issues?
I wonder about the wisdom of treating any people groups different to any other people groups, and this is especially so when we consider the first Australians. The Aboriginal people are equal to all Australians and should be equal before the law and before any government department. But to treat people differently is a form of apartheid and must be found repulsive to all Australians. There must be a better way and it seems to me to deal with people by reason of their relative disadvantage as this is where we can address the real issues. The continual policies of government purchasing trains, buses, submarines, and so many other products from overseas takes away potential jobs for the disadvantaged people in this country. All people need meaningful employment and if they cannot they are likely to create negative issues for their communities and for themselves. Lets begin to give real meaning to the disadvantaged groups by intentionally creating meaningful employment for all Australians and stop exporting our jobs overseas and to begin intentionally buying local products from local firms.
It is true many people trapped in the poverty cycle are trapped in a circle and are unable to get out; some are significant substance abusers and have no effective motivation to get out of it. BUT not all who are trapped are Aboriginal people and while a plan to assist people in spending choices would be helpful and this card system may be a way through the poverty trap it cannot be racist in the way it is implemented. Surely the plan is as far as it is possible to move the disadvantaged to a to a better place – away from substance abuse where applicable and into meaningful employment. In most cases the community substance abuse comes from a life where expectation of meaningful employment is virtually zero for most of the community. These people hear how wonderful the economy is and theirs is totally hopeless and to the whole community feeds the hopelessness deeply into the community – what they experience is poverty and this is not helpful to their emotional well-being. This plan of Turnbull’s has no legs if there is no support plans for transition into meaningful employment, however the Christian Democratic Party is committed to a plan where a transition towards real employment is included. We want all communities to be able to find a wholesome life for this is the best defence against substance abuse.
Currently the the tradition of both State and Federal Governments over the past several decades have introduced policies to remove most of the semi and unskilled jobs from the market via free trade deals. Even the trades are suffering a huge down turn due to government policies – THIS MUST BE REVERSED AS SOON AS POSSIBLE!
If Turnbull actually believes this, why did be begin it with only communities that were mostly Aboriginal people on welfare payments. There is a hidden message here that is offensive to the Aboriginal communities and that is most appalling as far as I am concerned. Is the government saying that the Aboriginal peoples can not manange money at all? There is also no other support put into place at all. It is a very poor attempt to fix a serious problem. Sure some of the Aboriginal Elders recommend that this is a wise step to make but I am confident that they did not expect that only the Aboriginal communities would face such a situation and with out support to a transition to a good place.
I completely understand where this is coming from and it is perfectly logical when only one people group are singled out for the trial of this program. Only an insensitive Government and Minister would implement this program in this way. Instead of a program to empower disadvantaged people we have seen the government segregate people groups in Australia once again.
The best way forward is:
- Roll this program out to all people groups.
- Roll out support programs in financial support training.
- Roll back all the programs that have exported our jobs offshore.
- Roll out effective job ready training programs
- Compel all government departments to seek, wherever possible, Australian produced products.
- Enhance transport options for much more of the population – Not excluding the remote communities.
- Roll back the foreign ownership of Australian real estate and businesses
- Roll back the sales of the utilities formerly owned by government.
- Consider re-establishing the Public Works Department in communities throughout Australia.