We welcome any real support for indigenous health and welfare and even two police will assist, but the Howard Government declared an emergency at our community over two years ago -- when they appointed an administrator to our health clinic -- and since then we have been without a doctor, we have fewer health workers, our council has been sacked, and all our youth and health programmes have been cut.
We have no CEO and limited social and health services. The Government has known about our overcrowding problem for at least 10 years and they’ve done nothing about it. How do they propose keeping alcohol out of our community when we are 20 minutes away from a five-star hotel? Will they ban blacks from Yulara? We have been begging for an alcohol counsellor and a rehabilitation worker so that we can help alcoholics and substance abusers but those pleas have been ignored. What will happen to alcoholics when this ban is introduced? How will the Government keep the grog runners out of our community without a permit system?
We have tried to put forward projects to make our community economically sustainable -- like a simple coffee cart at the sunrise locations -- but the Government refuses to even consider them.
There is money set aside from the Jimmy Little foundation for a kidney dialysis machine at Mutitjulu, but National Parks won’t let us have it. That would create jobs and improve indigenous health but they just keep stonewalling us. If there is an emergency, why won’t Mal Brough fast-track our kidney dialysis machine?
Some commentators have made much of the cluster of s-xually transmitted diseases identified at our health clinic. People need to understand that the Mutitjulu health clinic (now effectively closed) is a regional clinic and patients come from as far away as WA and SA; so, to identify a cluster here is meaningless without seeing the confidential patient data.
The fact that we hold this community together with no money, no help, no doctor and no government support is a miracle. Any community, black or white would struggle if they were denied the most basic resources. Police and the military are fine for logistics and coordination, but health care, youth services, education and basic housing are more essential.
(From Grant Watson (angriest))