ANTaR ACT ANZAC Day/Frontier Wars Bulletin

ANZAC/Frontier Wars 2015 Bulletin

Events related to Indigenous rights and culture.

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Coming Events – join us

Kindling the Peace Fire
from 5.30 pm Friday 24 April on top of Mt Ainslie
Meeting at the top of the mountain at sunset to light peace lanterns, welcome to country, community singing, an offering poetry, ‘Spirit Songs for Anzac Eve’ led by A Chorus of Women and a ceremonial smoking at the entrance to the mountain path.
Walking into darkness
departing 6.15 pm from on top of Mt Ainslie
Walkers begin their lantern-lit procession down the mountain track. The walk is shared as a meditative walk and the metaphor is of each of us carrying a light down into the darkness of grief. Not for everyone, only the sure footed. Candle lit lanterns provided. At the end of the path, walkers will pause in Remembrance Park and gather in some community singing before proceeding into the Australian War Memorial precinct.
Sharing the Peace Fire, Sharing Lament
About 7.15 pm Forecourt, Australian War Memorial
The lantern procession will join with other participants in the Australian War Memorial Forecourt about the Peace Fire for the main ceremony of the Vigil. With song, poetry and personal storytelling, we will re-imagine Anzac, seek, find and share our common ground of lament. For all the dead and maimed of all the wars.
Night Vigil around the Peace Fire
From about 8.30 pm at the lake end of Anzac Parade (outside West Block)
Departing the War Memorial for a final lantern walk down Anzac Parade and gathering outside West Block for a campfire with stories, poetry, singing and conversation all through the night. Warming soup will be offered, and also after the Anzac Dawn Service next morning. Remember to BYO mug, rug and chair.
Lest We Forget the Frontier Wars Anzac Day March
assembling from 11 am outside West Block, Anzac Parade
This is an Aboriginal led march which joins on the end of the Anzac Day March and parades up Anzac Parade to the Australian War Memorial singing songs and bearing flags, banners and placards naming the battles and massacres of Australia’s frontier wars. All welcome.
Note: Unlike other countries including the USA, Australia does NOT recognise its Frontier Wars in which First Australians died defending their country from foreign invasion by British settlers. As a result this group marches up Anzac Parade immediately behind the recognised contingents, but is blocked from entering the War Memorial. At that point participants peacefully but firmly hold their positions seeking a change of policy. Onlookers usually applaud the Frontier Wars marchers.

ANTaR ACT Monthly Meeting6 – 7.15 pmTues 5 May, Civic Library (entry at rear).
All welcome. Enquiries Peter 0417 197 382.

Mark in your diary:
26 May – Sorry Day
27 May – Anniversary of 1967 referendum
27 May – 3 June – Reconciliation Week
3 June – Mabo Day
5-12 July – NAIDOC Week
4 August – National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day
7-10 August – Round 22 NRL – Indigenous Round (Raiders will play Tigers in Canberra)
9 August – International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples

From ANTaR National:

Support a better approach in Indigenous Affairs, find out more about how you can affect change.
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ANTaR Justice, Rights and Respect for Australia's First Peoples

Progress in Jeopardy

Support a better approach in Indigenous Affairs

Left to Right: Andrew Meehan (ANTaR National Director), Kirstie Parker (Co-Chair National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples) and Mick Gooda (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner) chatted to the media about the IAS funding disaster on Close the Gap Day 2015.
Donate Today
Late last year, for the first time ever the Federal Government put the funding of an entire portfolio through a tendering process, known as the Indigenous Advancement Strategy (IAS).
It was a disaster! Less than half of recipients were Aboriginal organisations.

ANTaR is very worried this will lead to worse outcomes on the ground.

We are preparing to travel to Canberra to stand alongside our Aboriginal partners on budget night and support them in making the case for a better deal; we’re working on a submission to the forthcoming Senate inquiry into the IAS; and we’re campaigning to reverse the defunding of essential services in remote Aboriginal communities in Western Australia.

Together we made a difference!

This time last year we stood side by side with our Aboriginal partners in Canberra analysing the Budget, and we were shocked that $534 million was cut to essential services, programs and initiatives in Indigenous Affairs.

Among the most shocking news, was that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services (ATSILS) would receive a massive funding cut of more than $13 million which would severely impact on specialist culturally aware legal advice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people at their most vulnerable.

We’ve been in regular direct communication with affected organisations and conveyed their concerns to the Federal Government. ANTaR was the constant companion of ATSILS around the country and our supporters got behind our efforts – sending a total of 650 emails to the Attorney- General, sharing our campaign messages, and donating to keep our campaign and advocacy work going.

Just a few weeks ago the Attorney-General George Brandis, restored that funding to ATSILS. This happened because of pressure by ANTaR, from the Aboriginal community, and support from people just like you.

Please donate if you can so that our work to force a rethink on the devastating approach to IAS funding and community closures will be just as successful.

We only survive because of community donations. Thank you for giving our midyear appeal some consideration. I hope you can help.

Features of the failed funding approach

  1. There was no engagement and consultation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their representatives about how such an overhaul of Indigenous Affairs (tendering out the entire portfolio) could work.
  2. Small Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander controlled organisations that know what’s needed in their communities were disadvantaged as they competed against larger organisations and government departments with grant writing teams.
  3. The timeframe for putting in grant tenders for organisations (many of which had never before had to tender for funding for their service) at just over four weeks, was far too short.
  4. There was no preliminary work by government to engage with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to establish what services are needed, where the gaps are, and what type of services and programs could fill those gaps.
  5. While much is yet to emerge from this opaque process, what’s known is that $860 million has been allocated from tenders totalling more than 10 times that figure; 1,230 tenders were deemed ‘non-compliant’; some successful organisations were only funded for one year meaning the uncertainty continues; while others were only funded for part of their tender meaning their organisation would be left with a decision to cut some of their other services.
  6. Following budget cuts of $534 million last year, the Indigenous Advancement Strategy is another blow to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people – continued uncertainty, more services cut, no clear direction, and no consultation. We need greater engagement, transparency, and investment in an area of significant need – Indigenous Affairs.

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