Print this page

13 Feb 2010 Protest Sorry means you won't do it again

 

Information about the February 13, 2010 Protest

 

Stop the NT Intervention - Sorry means you won't do it again.

 

Media Coverage:

The Greens - Greens to address Perth rally to oppose the NT Intervention - 12 Feb 2010 - http://greensmps.org.au/content/media-release/greens-address-perth-rally-oppose-nt-intervention

 

*Please forward widely*


Stop the NT Intervention - Sorry means you won't do it again.

Protest: Saturday, February 13, 2010

For the speeches/videos of the event please see menu on the left.


9 am LaPerouse point, Bunnerong rd for the walk against racism to join the Redfern rally.

Starts at Foreshore then into Botany Rd: water stops at Millpond, then Gardeners Rd then Mc Evoy. Rally can join walkers at Mc Evoy to walk in. Michelle will follow up water containers. Community buses will go ahead and wait at various places, along the way.

1pm rally at The Block, Redfern

Speakers include:
Irene Fisher, Sunrise Health (NT)
Pastor Ray Minniecon
Mal Tulloch, CFMEU
Angeline Penrith
Jeff McMullen
Lee Rhiannon, The Greens

Performers:
The Black Turtles
Nadeena Dixon
Michael Donovan
More tba

Book Launch: "This Is What We Said"
Australian Aboriginal people give their views on the Northern Territory Intervention. This book follows on from the report called "Will They Be Heard?" launched November 2009 by the Hon. Malcolm Fraser. For further info: please click here

Supporters include:
NSW Aboriginal Land Council, NSW Reconciliation Council, ANTaR NSW, CFMEU, Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning Research, Mudgin-Gal, Babana, Reconciliation for Western Sydney, Guriwal Aboriginal Corp., FBEU, MUA, Metropolitan Local Aboriginal Land Councils, Illawarra LALC, Bahtabah LALC, Narromine LALC, La Perouse LALC

Stop the NT Intervention
End the income quarantine - stop the national expansion
Land rights, not leases
Self-determination, not assimilation
Aboriginal controlled housing, jobs and services for all communities

On February 13, 2010 there will be a national day of action against the NT Intervention and for Aboriginal rights.

This will mark the 2nd anniversary of the Apology to the Stolen Generations, when Prime Minister Rudd committed the government to, "a future where this Parliament resolves that the injustices of the past must never, never happen again".

But ongoing NT Intervention policies reek of the same paternalism and commitment to assimilation that created the Stolen Generations.

The Intervention has been a $1.5 billion disaster. The government has taken control of Aboriginal lives and land - but has not yet built a single house. Shamefully, communities will not receive housing until they sign 40-year leases over their land. This policy is expanding nationally.

The income quarantine is leading to greater poverty and social dislocation. Government statistics show reports of domestic violence are up 61%, substance abuse up 77% and 13% more infants have been hospitalised for malnutrition.

Minister Macklin has said the suspension of the Racial Discrimination Act has "denied dignity" to Aboriginal people. But her changes to Intervention legislation will see the RDA suspended until December 31, 2010.

Rather than do away with failing policy, new legislation will allow the compulsory welfare quarantining to be extended to "areas of disadvantage" around the country. This will start across the NT from July 2010. Draconian measures such as compulsory acquisition of Aboriginal land and extreme police powers have been rebadged "special measures" under the RDA.

Racism is not a special measure.

The demonisation of Aboriginal people at the core of the Intervention is leading to increased racism across Australia. Indigenous incarceration rates have risen 10% in the past year. Juvenile detention now stands at 30 times the national average. Aboriginal organisations everywhere face aggressive mainstreaming.

Aboriginal people have consistently demanded an end to the NT Intervention measures and resistance is growing.

Turning around the unacceptable disadvantage facing Aboriginal people requires massive increases in resourcing of community controlled organisations - not more racist laws.

No more broken promises - its time to break the intervention

Organised by Stop the Intervention Collective Sydney

Contact: Jean 0449646593 or Mon 0415410558

For the Feb 13 Protest on facebook: please click here

For the poster of the protest: please click here

For the leaflet of the protest for downloading, printing, distribution: please click here or here

For the latest STICS bulletin: please click here

For info on the "This Is What We Said" Book launch: please click here

For STICS' Fact Sheet about the new Legislation: please click here

For STICS' Fact Sheet about the Government's "Consultation" Process: please click here


National Actions in other cities on 13 Feb 2010

Adelaide: 1 pm, at the steps of Parliament House, Speakers: Donna Jackson of Larrakia/Wulna descent, local Kaurna and Ngarrendjeri people. Launch of book "This is what we said". Contact Alitja 0431112898, organized by STICSA

Alice Springs: 10 am Gathering on Church Lawns in the Mall, Speakers on Key Issues. Launch of book: "This Is What We Said", Followed by a March through the CBD, Contact Barbara 0401 291 166 or Marlene (08) 8952 5032, for further info: http://rollbacktheintervention.wordpress.com/

Brisbane: 11am Parliament House, George St, Brisbane, for further info: http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/ical/event.php?eid=294979886425, log into facebook and look for the Brisbane Murri Action Group, for the poster: please click here

Melbourne: 2pm Maysar,184-186 Gertrude St Fitzroy, March to Parliament House, for further info http://www.maicollective.blogspot.com/, for the poster: please click here, for the MR: please click here

Melbourne Protests Weblog - National Day of Protest against the NT Intervention - 13 February 2010 - http://melbourneprotests.wordpress.com/2010/02/16/national-day-of-protest-against-the-nt-intervention-13-february-2010/

Perth: 12 noon, Wesley Church (cnr. William & Hay Sts), contact Natasha 0434 303 248 or Sanna 0417 852 628, for the poster: please click here or here



Request for endorsement of protests on February 13, 2010


On the 13th of February 2010, Stop the Intervention Collective Sydney (STICS) is organising a protest as part of a national day of action against the NT Intervention and for Aboriginal rights.

February 13 will be the 2nd anniversary of the Apology, when Prime Minister Rudd committed the government to, "a future where this Parliament resolves that the injustices of the past must never, never happen again".

But these injustices are continuing to be inflicted on communities in the NT. The same paternalism and commitment to assimilation that created the stolen generations is playing out through policies such as the compulsory acquisition of Aboriginal land, controls on Aboriginal income, the push to centralise hundreds of remote communities into ‘hub towns' and severe restrictions on the use of Aboriginal languages in schools.

The demonisation of Aboriginal people at the core of the Intervention is leading to increased racism across Australia. Aboriginal juvenile detention rates continue to increase and now stand at almost 30 times the national average. The Australian (22/08/09) reported that, "the most recent statistics on child removals show Aboriginal children are being taken from their parents in numbers much greater than the Stolen Generations." Aboriginal men are 5 times more likely to be incarcerated than black men in Apartheid South Africa.

The Rudd government is promising to reinstate the Racial Discrimination Act (RDA), but this continues to be delayed and Minister Jenny Macklin has been clear that Intervention policies will not change. Discriminatory laws will be classified as "special measures" under the RDA, operating "for the benefit" of Aboriginal people.

But the Intervention has not built a single house and communities are being told they will receive no housing until they sign 40-year leases over their land. The welfare quarantine is leading greater poverty and social dislocation. Aboriginal people have consistently demanded an end to these measures.

In July, the Alyawarr people at Ampilatwatja walked-off their community and established a permanent protest camp. Spokesperson Richard Downs says, "We are fed up with the federal governments controls and measures, visions and goals forced onto us from outside. We are outcastes, isolated from all decision making. We will stay in this camp until our demands are met".

Attached is a statement from many people in ‘Prescribed Areas' calling for national protests on February 13.

This struggle needs support. In Sydney, there will be rally at 1pm at the Block in Redfern to hear from speakers and performers. At 9am a contingent of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people will begin a long walk, united against racism, leaving from La Perouse near the place where Australia was first invaded, to join the rally in Redfern.

Demands for the protest are:
Stop the NT Intervention - Sorry means you won't do it again
Reinstate the RDA - racism is not a special measure
Land rights, not leases
Quarantine racism, not welfare
Self-determination, not assimilation
Aboriginal controlled housing and services for all communities

We are asking your organisation to:
- Endorse the protest and organise a contingent to participate
- Make a donation to help with costs
- Assist in promotion by circulating material amongst your networks

If you would like someone to come and address your organisation, to respond to this letter, or if you need more information please get in touch the Stop the Intervention Collective by calling:
Monique Wiseman on 0415410558 or
Paddy Gibson on 0415800586 or
email: stoptheintervention@gmail.com

In solidarity,

Larissa Behrendt, NAIDOC Indigenous Person of the Year
Barbara Shaw, Mt Nancy Town Camp and Intervention Rollback Action Group (Alice Springs)
Shane Phillips, CEO Tribal Warrior, Redfern
Monique Wiseman, Stop the Intervention Collective Sydney

 

Endorsed by:
BABANA Aboriginal Men's Group Incorporated
Bahtabah Local Aboriginal Land Council Board Members and Members and Staff (comment)
CFMEU
Freedom Socialist Party
Hive Student Union
Indigenous Social Justice Association, Melbourne (comment)
Legal Rights Movement, SA
Link up, Mt Druitt
Metropolitan Land Council
Mudgin-Gal Women's Centre
Narromine Local Aboriginal Land Council
New South Wales Reconciliation Council
NSW Land Council
Radical Women, Melbourne
Reconciliation for Western Sydney
Redfern Community Centre
Solidarity
The Committee for the Dismantling of Zionism

Shane Phillips

click here to see the comments about the protest

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Statement by representatives from "prescribed communities"


A call for protests on February 13, 2010



Macklin breaks another promise - Racism is not a "special measure"

Minister Jenny Macklin has once again broken a clear promise given to Aboriginal people in the NT. On many occasions she gave her word that the Racial Discrimination Act (1975) would be re-instated in the October sittings of parliament this year. Minister Macklin also gave this promise to the UN Committee for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, following a complaint by many of us from 'Prescribed Areas'.

This is unacceptable treatment. Racism and divisions increase and living conditions deteriorate each day the Act remains suspended and the Intervention measures remain in place. We are like outcasts - denied basic rights afforded to other Australians.

We know the government is playing legal games as our lives get worse. They are keeping the RDA suspended so they can threaten the Alice Springs town camps with compulsory acquisition and force communities to sign long term leases.

When they finally re-instate the RDA it will to entrench the racist intervention - not to restore our rights. The Minister is claiming that the Intervention can be classified as a series of "special measures" under the RDA, operating "for the benefit" of Aboriginal people.

How would the Minister like it if someone took her house, quarantined her money, controlled where she shopped, ate and slept, and then told her it was all for her benefit?

The Minister will claim that her department has "consulted" with Aboriginal people, that we have somehow given consent to these laws.

But the consultation process was a sham from the beginning. Public servants mostly patronised communities with a government story about how the Intervention is working.

The "Future Directions for the NTER" document that consultations are based on gave no real choice to Aboriginal people about the Intervention. Leaked documents from the Minister's office prove that we were never consulted about compulsory acquisition of our land under the 5-year lease, because the government knew we would not consent.

We were asked which brand of compulsory Income Management we would like, what kind of alcohol controls or police powers. But communities have said many times we want an end to all racist control measures.

We clearly made these statements again through this round of "consultations". Get rid of the laws. We want the resources wasted on "Intervention" to go directly to communities to meet our real social needs.

The Minister will not get away with this. The idea that taking Aboriginal land, housing and basic human rights away "for our benefit" is the same paternalism that created the Stolen Generations.

The people at Ampilatwatja have walked off in protest against the Intervention and we are standing up across the NT. We are part of a growing movement around the country - including unions, human rights and church groups. Rudd's Apology feels hollow two years on - we have been betrayed once again. We are calling for protest rallies across Australia on February 13 2010.

Racism is not a special measure. No more broken promises - it's time to break the Intervention.

Signed by:

Richard Downs, Ampilatwatja
Frankie Holmes, Antarringina
Dave Lewis, Ampilatwatja
Wally Miller, Ampilatwatja
Banjo Morton
Graeme Morton
Larkin Morton
Roger Morton, Antarringina
Harry Nelson, Yuendumu
Dave Ross
Kingi Ross, Irrultja
Jimmy Rubuntja, Epenarra
Harry Rubuntja, Canteen creek
Geoffrey Shaw, Mt Nancy Town Camp
Fred Teece
Donald Thompson, Antarringina

Loretta Baily, Antarringina
Betty Beasley, Ampilatwatja
Casey Holmes, Antarringina
Eileen Hoosan, Mt Nancy Town Camp
Angeline Luck
Lily Morton
Elaine Peckham, Iwupataka Land Trust
Hellen Rubuntja
Barbara Shaw, Mt Nancy Town Camp
Raelene Silverton, West Waterhouse

October 29, 2009


Special Organising Meeting on 4 January 2010 at 6 pm


The Stop the Intervention Collective Sydney held a successful organising meeting - to prepare for the 13 Feb 2010 demo - at the NSW Teachers Federation Building, Level 1, 23-33 Mary Street Surry Hills on Monday, 4 January 2010 at 6pm.

Special Guest speaker at the meeting was Richard Downs, spokesperson for the Ampilatwatja walk-off camp.