There were fewer vulnerable children and improved education outcomes among Indigenous communities in the Northern Territoryas a result of Stronger Futures initiatives, according to a new report.
The first Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory Six-Monthly Progress Report also reported that more jobs and better services had been established
The report shows there have been improvements in outcomes for Aboriginal children in the Northern Territory on the Australian Early Development Index, which measures health and wellbeing, social and communication skills.
The proportion of Aboriginal children in the Northern Territory who are vulnerable on two or more indicators in the index fell from 47 per cent in 2009 to 38 per cent in 2012 – a fall of 9 percentage points which is greater than the equivalent fall for all Indigenous children across Australia.
More jobs, services: report
The COAG Reform Council has also found that the percentage of Indigenous people aged 20 to 24 years who had attained Year 12 or equivalent qualifications rose faster in the Northern Territory than any other jurisdiction between 2006 and 2011. The report shows that between 1 July and 31 December 2012, 760 Aboriginal people were employed in services delivered under Stronger Futures.
That included 350 people employed in Community Night Patrols; 189 people employed in the School Nutrition Program; 47 people employed as Youth in Community workers; 28 people employed in playgroups; 26 people employed in crèches; and 24 people employed as Indigenous Engagement officers.
Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Jenny Macklin said since 2007, there had been almost 3,000 real jobs created in government service delivery positions.
“The best thing we can do for Aboriginal people in the Northern Territory is to make sure there are good jobs available in their communities,” Ms Macklin said.
“Our long term, $3.4 billion commitment under Stronger Futures gives Aboriginal people and communities an assurance that we are not walking away.”
The Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory Six-Monthly Progress Report can be accessed at this PS News link.