Govt threatens to take over town camps

An association representing a group of Northern Territory homelands has accused politicians of making short-sighted policy that will lead to the destruction of Indigenous society and culture.

The Northern Territory Government has refocussed remote funding to build 20 of the largest Aboriginal communities into regular towns.

Laynhapuy Homelands Association says the government has ignored the wishes of Indigenous people who want to continue living in small clan-based communities.

Association chief executive Yananymul Mununggurr says Indigenous people moved back to the homelands to escape problems that will now resurface.

"People will start moving out from their homelands and that is going to create another big problem," she said.

"There will be petrol sniffing, there will be alcohol, there will be more gambling there."

The Northern Territory Government says it consulted widely with residents of outstations before the policy was released.

Further comment is expected today.

Article source:
Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin Media Release 21/05/2009

Australian Government - Discussion Paper (pdf file)

Homelands decision 'will destroy Indigenous culture' ABC News

Don't lose what the homelands have gained