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Colin Barnett's remote community child protection comments 'despicable', WA Opposition says

Ben Wyatt

Western Australian Premier Colin Barnett originally said that he was closing down the remote Homelands communities because of the lack of funds. Now he is saying that he is doing it because of the 'appalling mistreatment of little children'.
Following Barnett's recent complete change of story, Ben Wyatt, the WA's opposition spokesman for Aboriginal affairs has described the new story as not the actions of a Premier but the actions of a desperate, despicable man. Read more about Colin Barnett's remote community child protection comments 'despicable', WA Opposition says

Barnett warns evidence of remote child abuse will shock

WA Premier Colin Barnett is looking for dirt in the poor under-resourced communities of remote Western Australia. He's peeping under every bed and under every tree searching for evidence to improve his argument to close down remote Homeland communities. The Western Australian government has done this at Lockridge in Perth's Swan Valley and then more recently at Oombulgurri in the North Eastern Kimberley. Colin Barnett has turned removals and dislocation of First Nations and Peoples to a new level. Read more about Barnett warns evidence of remote child abuse will shock

Stalemate on The Block in Redfern as protesters defy trespass notice

Trespass sign posted at Redfern Tent Embassy

The Aboriginal Housing Company posted the trespass signs in February, giving the protesters 72 hours to vacate the property. The protesters rallied to bolster their ranks and were still in their 'tent embassy' more than a week after the deadline passed. Wiradjuri elder Jenny Munro has been camping at the site since May 26 last year, to demand more affordable Aboriginal housing on the land which was purchased by the Aboriginal Housing Company with a federal government grant in the 1970s. Read more about Stalemate on The Block in Redfern as protesters defy trespass notice

Plans to shut Aboriginal communities driving people out

Mulan Aboriginal community

Aboriginal leaders say the WA government plan to close communities is already driving people out of some of the most remote parts of Australia. Premier Colin Barnett last year announced as many as 150 of the state's 274 communities would be closed in the next three years because of a funding shortfall. Mr Steven Kopp, the Chairman of Mulan homelands community, which sits on top of the Tanami Desert, said some people were so worried about the community's future that up to 20 had already moved away. Read more about Plans to shut Aboriginal communities driving people out

Families urged to look after each other as Kimberley region records seven suicides in seven weeks

Aboriginal Suicide

Communities are urged to look out for each other over the festive season after seven people are believed to have suicided in WA's Kimberley region in the last seven weeks. Researchers have identified Christmas as a high-risk time for Aboriginal people considering self-harm. The most recent suicide occurred just two days before Christmas. Indigenous mental health commissioner Pat Dudgeon said the extra pressures around special foods, decorations, and gifts which are beyond the budget of many Aboriginal people. Read more about Families urged to look after each other as Kimberley region records seven suicides in seven weeks

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