MEDIA RELEASE: REMOTE COMMUNITY SAFETY COMPROMISED BY MORRISON GOVERNMENT CUTS

July 02, 2019

The Government must immediately restore Community Safety Patrols to nine remote Indigenous communities in Central Australia.

The patrols have stopped after program funding to Central Desert Regional Council (CDRC) was reduced by the Morrison Government.

In one of his last acts as Indigenous Affairs Minister, Senator Nigel Scullion cut administrative funding for the Community Safety Patrol contract, putting CDRC in the position where they can no longer afford to operate patrolling services.

It is one of many opaque and questionable decisions made under the Liberals’ Indigenous Advancement Strategy, which has been heavily criticised by the Auditor General for failing to follow procurement and record keeping processes.

It is unacceptable this Government thinks regional councils and remote organisations should be subsidising the delivery of Federal Government programs in remote communities.

This cut means more than 30 people living on remote Indigenous communities are no longer able to do this important work.

The Morrison Government’s cuts mean the loss of jobs and vital services in remote regions and is compromising safety in communities where the nearest police presence can be hours away.

The Government promised their new National Indigenous Australians Agency would work better with communities on the ground – now it’s time to deliver.

Minister Wyatt has the opportunity to do the right thing and reverse this bad decision, so Community Safety patrols in the Central Desert Region can restart now.

TUESDAY, 2 JULY 2019