Sunday, 29 September 2013

Northern Territory Intervention revisited - along with more children stolen from their parents

Before the Intervention, before all the work stopped in our community, I used to work as a nutritionist at the Family Centre. But there’s nothing here now any more.
We used to provide food and I would encourage all the young mothers. How to look after their kids, how to make sure [the children] were fed healthy food. But now it’s gone, we never got an explanation why.
It’s hard for the young mothers now. If their little babies don’t put on weight for two or three weeks, they’ll be taken away from their mother’s arms by welfare.
I’ve seen it. It’s really sad for me because when I was working here I used to encourage them. Now they get no encouragement. There’s just a report typed into the computer for welfare.
For Aboriginal people, this thing is coming back for us. Stolen Generation. Taking kids away from own mother.
And that’s really sad. It’s really no good. It’s not just happening here, it’s happening everywhere in our communities.
This testimony is from a strong Aboriginal woman in a remote community in the Northern Territory. It was given in the spring of 2011 when her people were preparing for a festival and protest. She had worked as a nutritionist, a vital service in a poverty-stricken community where raising children is a daily struggle. Cuts to the Community Development Employment Projects (CDEP) program closed the service down. The cuts began with the Northern Territory Intervention.

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