Sen­a­tor de­mands fair go for chil­dren

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - IAN FRAZER

Palm Is­land and a foun­da­tion mem­ber and di­rec­tor of Abo­rig­i­nal Hos­tels Ltd.

The Townsville Bul­letin re­ported the next day, July 13, that the Sen­a­tor hoped sim­i­lar ac­com­mo­da­tion would be built soon in other ar­eas and that spe­cialised stu­dent hos­tels would be­come a re­al­ity in Townsville, Char­ters Tow­ers and Mount Isa.

Fed­eral pres­i­dent of the La­bor Party from 1962 to ’ 70, Sen­a­tor Keeffe said the Whitlam La­bor Gov­ern­ment had p r o v i d e d many ad­di­tional homes and a range of s e c o n d a r y school grants in the North.

“M e d i c a l and lo­cal ser­vices have been es­tab­lished at most cen­tres and for the first time in al­most a cen­tury and a half, Abo­rig­i­nal and Is­lan­der peo­ple in this part of Aus­tralia can hold up their heads with pride as equal mem­bers in the com­mu­nity,” he said.

But the same day the Bul­letin re­ported the dis­il­lu­sion­ment of Abo­rig­i­nal leader Charles Perkins with the Whitlam Gov­ern­ment.

“When La­bor came to power in De­cem­ber 1972, we thought they had the great­est Prime Min­is­ter and the best po­lit­i­cal party for Abo­rig­ines,” Mr Perkins said.

“Noth­ing has come out of it. They have den­i­grated us. They have sup­pressed us.”

Abo­rig­i­nal Af­fairs Min­is­ter Les John­son re­port­edly dodged re­porters af­ter Mr Perkins’ speech mark­ing Na­tional Abo­rig­ines Day. In 2005, Queens­land Abo­rig­i­nal Hos­tels Ltd ren­o­vated and re­fur­bished the Iris Clay Hos­tel at a cost of $ 3 mil­lion, pro­vid­ing 18 rooms and short- term ac­com­mo­da­tion for 40 peo­ple.

They have den­i­grated us.

They have sup­pressed us.

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