BY DANIELLE CRONIN Canberra Times
The Federal Government was rich on rhetoric but failed to take decisive steps to close the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous people, critics said yesterday.
Prime Minister Kevin Rudd rejected the suggestion and signed an agreement, which would deliver $195million for health, education and training, social housing, transport and community infrastructure in the East Kimberley. He called for an end to partisanship in the debate over indigenous policy.
”It is time that we put the rancour of the past behind us,” Mr Rudd said.
”It is time that we recognise the things that have not worked in the past, and it’s time we actually marched together towards the future on those things that do work.”
Mr Rudd set targets to close the gap in health, education and life expectancy between indigenous and non-indigenous people after he made the official apology to the Stolen Generations.
In its new report, the Productivity Commission concluded the gap had widened in some areas including child abuse and incarceration rates.