Establishment of law, agencies, policy and programs to support Indigenous rights, reform and economic development; calling on industry to play a major role.
Australia is a large country with a Federal Government, 7 State & Territory Governments, and over 500 Local Governments. Until the 1967 Referendum, Indigenous Australians had little in the way of recognition and rights under the laws and policies of governments. The corner has been turned, but the destination is still a journey away.
The Reform Agenda today is intense in terms of policy and resources, in an effort to Close The Gap and address social and economic hardships still being experienced amongst Indigenous Australians. At 3% of the population, the collective government resources being allocated toward Indigenous services and the reform agenda equates to more than $10 billion per year [source: Australian Productivity Commission]. There is strong consensus between government and Indigenous leaders that reform needs to continue to look for better ways with better outcomes at less cost.
Appropriately designed and inclusive Indigenous economic development is emerging as a cornerstone in decreasing social challenges, and increasing well being and prosperity across the Indigenous population.
According to Deloitte Access Economics:
Addressing Indigenous disadvantage will have significant positive implications for government budgets in the form of higher revenues and lower expenditure. The estimates indicate that under a scenario in which the circumstances of Indigenous Australians improve to match those of the Australian average, by 2031 governments across Australia would experience a net gain of $11.9 billion.This reflects:
- a $7.2 billion increase in revenues associated with the broadened tax base created by a larger economy; and
- a $4.7 billion reduction in expenditure due to lower costs in areas such as health and social security, due to greater well being and affluence among Indigenous Australians.
BlueSkyED works with government agencies and welcomes collaborative initiatives focused on this reform.