WGAR News: Muckaty radioactive waste dump; welfare quarantining (4 Apr 10)

WGAR: Working Group for Aboriginal Rights (Australia)

WGAR website: http://wgar.info/

Muckaty Radioactive Waste Dump
Expansion of Welfare Quarantining


- Background

Beyond Nuclear Initiative’s weblog:
“This site is a snapshot of current nuclear free campaigns in Australia, particularly focusing on the proposal for a federal radioactive waste dump in the Northern Territory.”

WGAR News: Nuclear waste dump in the Northern Territory (2 Mar 10)

WGAR News: Muckaty Station Nuclear Waste Dump (20 Mar 10)

WGAR News: Nuclear Waste Dump ... (28 Mar 10)

- National Day of Action

ASEN - Australian Student Environment Network:
National Day of Action against Muckaty Radioactive Waste Dump: 12th April!
1 Apr 10: "On 12 April, the Senate will hold a public hearing in Darwin as part of its inquiry into the legislation that will lock-in Muckaty as the site for a national radioactive waste dump. There will be no hearing in Tennant Creek, effectively SILENCING many Traditional Owners, who will be unable to travel to Darwin. SHOW YOUR SUPPORT to the Muckaty Traditional Owners who have been opposing the plan to dump dangerous nuclear waste on their country since it was first proposed."

- Media Releases

Greens MPs: Govt admits six jobs will be created at Muckaty waste dump
30 Mar 10: "The Senate Inquiry into the Commonwealth Government's radioactive waste dump legislation has heard a total of six jobs will be created at a future Muckaty Station nuclear dump, near Tennant Creek. "This puts to rest the myth that somehow this waste dump will create benefits for Aboriginal people or the wider Tennant Creek community," said Senator Scott Ludlam, Greens spokesperson on nuclear issues."

Greens to question secret Muckaty contract in waste dump inquiry
29 Mar 10: "The Australian Greens will question the two parties involved in signing a secret contract that led to the nomination of Muckaty Station, near Tennant Creek, as the only proposed site for Australia's first ever radioactive waste dump. "This inquiry will give the Commonwealth Government and the Northern Land Council the chance to finally be open with Northern Territorians and all Australians about the exact nature of the deal struck under a process which Labor described as illegitimate," said Senator Scott Ludlam, Greens spokesperson on nuclear issues."

- News

Brisbane Times: Ngapa people reject nuclear waste dump
3 Apr 10: "Traditional owners of land that could house a nuclear waste dump have protested against the plan, saying they were excluded from the process. ... About 250 people including traditional owners and anti-nuclear campaigners marched in Tennant Creek on Saturday, directing their anger at both Resources Minister Martin Ferguson and the Northern Land Council (NLC) - who they say overlooked them."

Tennant & District Times: Big turnout expected for Muckaty rally
1 Apr 10: "HUNDREDS of people are expected to turn out in Tennant Creek on Saturday to rally against the proposed nuclear waste dump at Muckaty. Natalie Wasley from the Beyond Nuclear Initiative said the people the Federal Government are attempting to silence with draconian new legislation would turn out to voice their opposition."

ABC Alice Springs: Dump site row put to Aboriginal dance-off
1 Apr 10: "Aboriginal people from the Barkly region say they will test claims to a potential nuclear waste dump site by holding a traditional dancing session."

Indymedia Australia: Proposed Muckaty nuclear waste dump no benefit to traditional owners
31 Mar 10: "The Government has admitted that only 6 jobs will be created by the Nuclear Waste dump on Muckaty Station, and none of them are likely to go to traditional people. "This puts to rest the myth that somehow this waste dump will create benefits for Aboriginal people or the wider Tennant Creek community," said Senator Scott Ludlam, Greens spokesperson on nuclear issues."

ABC: Long term radiation from possible dump needs attention
31 Mar 10: "The deputy chair of the Senate committee examining the proposed national nuclear waste dump near Tennant Creek says the management of long-term radiation needs more attention."

ABC: Greens want Government to dump waste 'secrecy'
30 Mar 10: "The Greens say they will use today's Senate inquiry into a proposed nuclear waste dump to demand the release of documents nominating a Northern Territory station as the preferred site. A Senate inquiry is sitting in Canberra today to examine the proposal to situate the dump at Muckaty Station, north of Tennant Creek."

Brisbane Times: NT nuclear waste dump to create six jobs
30 Mar 10: "A nuclear waste dump to be built in the heart of Australia will employ only six people, yet the traditional owners who consented to the deal hope it will create prosperity for generations."

ABC: Senate hears dump will 'build children's future'
30 Mar 10: "A Ngapa land owner has told a Senate inquiry there is no reason a nuclear waste dump should not be built at Muckaty Station, north of Tennant Creek. Amy Lauder told the inquiry a nuclear waste dump at Muckaty Station will help her people build a better life for their children."

NT News: NT not able to cope with nuke accident, says Government
29 Mar 10: "MOST Territory hospitals and the Port of Darwin are not equipped to deal with a radioactive waste incident or interest from "sophisticated criminal groups", the NT Government has said."

ABC: Ferguson evades protest through back-door escape
29 Mar 10: "The Federal Resources Minister Martin Ferguson has avoided protesters in Darwin by leaving through the workers entrance of a popular tourist attraction."

Flickr: Madeline Hudson speaking against the proposed nuclear waste dump at Muckaty Station
29 Mar 10: "Madeline told the crowd:
"Our Federal Resources and Energy Minister Martin Ferguson has decided that Muckaty is the designated spot, the site for the national radioactive waste dump. ... Now this decision is a politically based decision. It is not based on science, environmental or ethical considerations. It is another example of exploiting an already disenfranchised and minority group in our society."

ABC: Traditional owners put hands up for nuclear dump
29 Mar 10: "Traditional land owners from the Northern Territory have visited Australia's only nuclear reactor to see what they are in for if a radioactive waste dump is built on their land."

ANSTO: ANSTO welcomes Npaga visitors
29 Mar 10: "Representatives of the Ngapa people, traditional owners of Muckaty Station in the Northern Territory, were taken on an extensive tour of ANSTO's facilities at Lucas Heights on Monday, 29 March."

- Video

YouTube: Madeline Hudson on stopping nuclear waste storage at Muckaty Station
29 Mar 10: "Madeline Hudson from Friends of the Earth spoke about the campaign against the nuclear waste storage dump at Muckaty Station."

ABC: Muckaty Station owners visit nuclear reactor
29 Mar 10: "Traditional owners of Muckaty Station, near Tennant Creek in the Northern Territory, say they will accept a nuclear waste dump being built near their land."


- Background

Parliament of Australia: Senate Community Affairs Committee
Inquiry into Social Security and Other Legislation Amendment …
[Includes: Submissions received by the Committee;
Documents Tabled at hearings; Additional Information received]

Stop the Intervention: Racial Discrimination Act – New Legislation

WGAR News: New NT Intervention laws that extend welfare quarantining (12 Feb 10)

WGAR News: New NT Intervention laws that extend income management (19 Mar 10)

- Speech from STICS Forum

Stop the Intervention: The Failure of the Rudd Government’s Aboriginal Policy
An Address delivered by Professor the Honourable Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC
29 Mar 10: "This is disgraceful legislation which perpetuates the paternalism and racial discrimination inherent in the Intervention. It is a disturbing extension of bureaucratic powers and the power of the executive over welfare recipients and seems to reflect a philosophy more in tune with that of the previous Government that what one would expect of a Labor Government."

- Media Release

Rollback the Intervention: Media Release – 31 March 2010
31 Mar 10: "Federal Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin needs to stop perpetuating misinformation about income management and its supposed benefits, particularly to children, says a spokesperson for the Intervention Rollback Action Group, which is based in Alice Springs. There is no evidence, either in Australia or internationally, that income management helps underprivileged people to deal with issues arising from their circumstances. The measure in fact goes again the government’s own policy of social inclusion. Extending the measure to other areas of disadvantage around the country will not help people who are struggling to cope with issues impacting on their lives but will add to their psychological and financial stress."

- Opinion and/or Analysis

The Stump - A Crikey Group Blog:
Will Caucus allow unproven, dangerous changes to income management?
31 Mar 10: "On the one side is Alastair Nicholson, nearly all major welfare agencies, including sole parent groups, other women’s groups, Indigenous Doctors, Academic researchers, a report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, some statistics and one small longitudinal research project who all oppose continuing and extending compulsory income management in the NT and potentially throughout Australia. ... " Eva Cox

- Radio

ABC Radio National Breakfast: Welfare quarantining
30 Mar 10: "The federal government's proposed legislation to expand compulsory income management across the Northern Territory is expected to come before the Senate when parliament resumes in May. This would see the controversial measure of income quarantining extended to all Australians on welfare, including white families."
[Includes guest Alastair Nicholson, Former Chief Justice of the Family Court]

ABC Radio National Breakfast: Minister responds to welfare quarantining criticism
31 Mar 10: "Yesterday Breakfast spoke with former chief justice of the Family Court Alastair Nicholson, who has been critical of the federal government's plan to introduce income quarantining across the Northern Territory. He argued the proposed legislation, to be debated in the Senate in May, is a 'sham' and that the Minister for Indigenous Affairs Jenny Macklin is misrepresenting the results of consultations held by the government."
[Includes guest Jenny Macklin, Indigenous Affairs Minister]

ABC Radio National Life Matters: Income management
25 Mar 10: "A hot topic at the ACOSS Conference, which kicks off today, will be income management. The federal government and the welfare sector are at loggerheads over it. The government has legislation currently in the Senate which would see a national roll-out of the policy, which partially quarantines social security payments to buy food and other essentials."
[Includes guests: John Falzon from St Vincent de Paul; David Glasgow, who's involved in an income management trial in Cape York]

- News

Koori Mail: NSWALC backs Nicholson on welfare reform
[scroll down page] http://www.koorimail.com/index.php
31 Mar 10: "THE NSW Aboriginal Land Council has supported former Family Court Chief Justice Alastair Nicholson's 'searing' condemnation of the Rudd Government's Indigenous policies ... NSWALC Chairperson Bev Manton said the land council feared that the Senate would pass the Government's proposed welfare reforms - including extension of compulsory income management to all welfare recipients - before Aboriginal people knew about or understood them."

Koori Mail: Macklin defends income management plans
[scroll down page] http://www.koorimail.com/index.php
31 Mar 10: "FEDERAL Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin has fended off criticisms of her proposal to extend compulsory income management beyond NT Intervention communities to welfare recipients nationwide. Ms Macklin told ABC Radio that most of more than 500 of people consulted over the measure supported it, and insisted that welfare recipients could avoid the measure by getting their kids to school regularly."

Australian: Noel Pearson hails welfare quarantining extension
31 Mar 10: "NOEL Pearson has called the Rudd government's extension of mandatory income management across the Northern Territory a "historic leap'' into a new era."

WAtoday: Former top judge slams NT action
30 Mar 10: "A FORMER chief justice of the Family Court, Alastair Nicholson, QC, says Kevin Rudd is failing indigenous Australians by continuing the Northern Territory intervention and paying lip service to equality. ... Professor Nicholson said the Prime Minister had avoided the ''searing moral challenge'' of forced assimilation, and he asked why Mr Rudd ''continued to roll over like a puppy'' in support of the intervention."

ABC: Universal welfare quarantining will 'punish'
30 Mar 10: "A former chief justice of the Family Court has criticised the Federal Government's push to roll out welfare quarantining to all recipients. Judge Alistair Nicholson, who prepared the 'Will They Be Heard' report examining the Government's consultation efforts on the Northern Territory Intervention, believes the welfare measure will remain discriminatory even after being applied to everyone."

Koori Mail: Welfare legislation 'disgraceful', 'a sham'
[scroll down page] http://www.koorimail.com/index.php
29 Mar 10: "A FORMER Family Court chief judge says Federal Government proposed welfare reforms perpetuate, rather than remove, racism under the NT Intervention. Alastair Nicholson told a forum in Sydney tonight that planned income management of welfare recipients nationwide still targeted Aboriginal people and would not restore the Racial Discrimination Act in the NT. Prof Nicholson urged the public to pressure the Parliament to reject a related bill currently before the Senate."

- Of related interest

SMH: First welfare penalties for truancy
29 Mar 10: "THE federal government has for the first time suspended the welfare payments of parents because their children were not attending school. The suspensions took place in the Northern Territory just before the last school year ended, under a controversial trial that links school enrolment and attendance to welfare payments."

CAAMA Radio News
(Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association):
30 Mar 10: "Some families restricted from Centrelink payments due to children not attending school."

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WGAR: Working Group for Aboriginal Rights (Australia)