Indigenous rangers boost under Labor
Indigenous ranger employment would double by 2021 under Labor through a $200 million investment in the program should the party win the July 2 election.
Opposition leader Bill Shorten said Labor would aim to have 1550 indigenous rangers working on country in the next five years.
Shadow indigenous affairs minster Shayne Neumann said the ranger program provided a pathway to a profession that improved health, income, crime rates and incarceration rates.
“This is an excellent program that provides training, a career path and good jobs in some of the most remote and disadvantaged indigenous communities in Australia, and it deserves more support,” he said.
“Indigenous rangers perform many activities to support environmental and cultural conservation. Activities include the management of cultural sites, tourism facilities, fire regimes, biodiversity, feral animals, weeds, pollution and climate change impacts.”
The Wilderness Society national director Lyndon Schneiders said the program was a clear success.
“The program delivers real and meaningful jobs in areas that are often subject to extreme unemployment, the social impacts are demonstrably positive and the environment is properly managed by those who have deep insights and understanding into the needs of country,” he said.
Ngurrawaana head ranger Kingsley Woodley on the Portland River.