Throughout the years, the entire Australian nation has been in the course of constant social and racial issues between the indigenous Australian people and non-indigenous white Australian people. From the ancient time and up to the modern contemporary era, differences and gap between the indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people are clearly visible that have been the main reason of suffering amongst the indigenous Australians.
Moreover, it is indeed undeniable that indigenous Australians have been through a long road of suffering from removal, discrimination, hostility and the shortcomings of effective government policy to resolve this long been issue of Aboriginal Australian.
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(BRI) For the most recent customary practice, the Aboriginal children are separated from their families, while the entire aboriginal homes or the indigenous communities have been moved out of their houses and sent to another subdivision of the country. Since then, the Islander traits and Indigenous way of living was in regulation and oversee in most of its aspects.
(Global Ministries) Nevertheless, this issue between the indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people is not only historical. In the modern or contemporary time, the Australian aboriginals still carry the burden of intense social scrutiny with all the things that they do and to all the places that they walk off. In the most clever sense, reconciliation in the entire Australian nation signifies that both indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people must work hard together to resolve and cure the ruined relationship between them.
Essentially, this process reconciliation or cure on the issue between indigenous and non-indigenous Australian will be effective through the cautious settlement of the negative outcome of the dilemma, which are the following. (BRI) “40% of the Aboriginal population is under 15 years old (compared to less than 25% of the white population). Less than 8% of the Aboriginal population is over 50 (compared to more than 25% of the white population). Unemployment amongst Aborigines is 40% compared to 10% of the white population).
Unemployment in the 15-19 year age group is approx. 60% for those not in educations (compared to 20% of white youths). 55% of Aboriginal employment is provided by the private sector (compared to 78% of non-Aboriginal employment). Aboriginal people are significantly underrepresented in the wholesale/retail industry and in the Finance/Business sector). 35% of Aboriginal males’ jobs are classified as ‘laborers’ (compared to 15% of the non-Aboriginal population). 20% of Aboriginal females jobs are classified as ‘laborers’ (compared to 12.
5% of the non-aboriginal female population). 9% of Aboriginal has any post school qualifications (compared to 26% of the overall population). 53% of Aborigines live in rental accommodation (compared to 14% of total population). Aboriginal life expectancy is 15 to 17 years less than for the whole population. Death rates associated with the circulatory system are 2. 5 times greater than for the total population. 10% of the Aboriginal population lives more than 100 km.
from a hospital, 17% have no access to a doctor and a further19% has no access to a nurse. Aboriginal imprisonment is 18 times that of non Aborigines. 20% of those detained in custody are Aboriginal and yet Aboriginals represent only 2. 5% of the overall population. 10% of Aboriginal people aged over 25 were taken away from their natural family by a church or government agency. The arrest rate of Aboriginal “stolen children” is 32% compared to 19% of “non-stolen” Aborigines. ” (BRI)
In a more in-depth review, the above factual statistics can be accounted as well to be the factual suffering of the indigenous Australian people for a long time, as the result of racial discrimination in the entire Australian nation. Nevertheless, the following statistics shows the serious and hazardous suffering of the Australian indigenous people. Basing on these detrimental statistics of the issue, it is no doubt that reconciliation across the Australian nation is badly needed to unite both the indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people and end the social suffering of the Australian aboriginals.
Data shows that one of initial process of reconciliation in Australia had happened way back May 26, 1997, through “The Bringing Them Home” report, which provide an in depth information on the violence that had carried out on Australian indigenous and on the communities of Torres Strait Island, by means of forced separation of children or young aborigines from the custody of their parents and families. (Global Ministries)
In deeper standpoint, the report had created a positive outcome for the Australian Federal Parliament, which initiates the change on the outlook of Australians on the indigenous as well as the Torres Strait Island people of the entire country. Also, the report had suggests that a “Sorry Day” must be done every year to remind and commemorate the soreness as well as the suffering of the indigenous Australian people, which they have experienced in a long time.
Due to this, communities throughout the entire Australian nation celebrates and carries a “Sorry Day” each year on the 26th day of May, which define by most of the people as the “Day of Healing” (Global Ministries) Technically, one of the greater result of “The Bringing Them Home” in 1997 was that it inspired the formal public apology of the Australian Prime Minister for all the members of stolen generations.
A day before the formal public apology of the Australian Prime Minister, Peter Garret, a well reputable Australian musician and politician, had said that the impending apologetic statement for the Australian stolen generation will pave way for the real impact of the reconciliation in entire country. According to Peter Garrett: “This simple act will open up the possibilities for healing and mutual respect so keenly needed in relations between white and black Australia. We believed that we needed to square up to our past, that the lack of an apology to Aboriginal Australians was a broken link in the chain to a joined future.
” (Guardian News and Media Limited 2008) Last February 13, 2008, the Australian Prime Minister had formally delivered his statement of apology for the stolen generations that have been separated from their parents, families and communities by force. According to Mick Dodson (co-chairman of Reconciliation Australia), the apology is something that the people have been waiting for the longest time on its history. Moreover, some of the leader indigenous leader had defined the prime minister’s statement of apology as monumental, as this kind of happening in federal parliament is entirely one of the significant events in its history.
(ABC Darwin) In a brief background of the social injustice, it is said that the harmful practice had begun in early and the middle of 18th century, which continuous to moves on until the year 1970. Through the 1997 analysis made by the Equal Opportunity Commission and Human Rights, it was stated that between one out of ten and three out of ten young children of Torres Straight Islander children and aboriginals are separated by force from their family from 1910 and 1970. (ABC Darwin)
The initial beginning of force removal of child policy was specifically designed for the fortification that vindicates the assimilation and segregation of Indigenous people in Australia. This policy was formalized through Legislation under the command of the Colonial governments, which gives broad authority over the lives of indigenous and Torres Straight Islander people defined by the governmental subsidiary, named as the Aboriginal Protection Board or better known as the APB. (Link Up 1997) Nevertheless, the above policies have been through different objections as it was cited to be a violation of human rights.
Through the recent years, the agreement was released that quotes the assimilation programs as a failure that it only generate suffering and sorrow for the Indigenous Australians of today. (Maiden, p. 1) Currently, the appreciation on the stolen generation is a major subject across the Australian nation and in the House of Representative. In reality, the present Prime Minister Kevin Rudd of the Commonwealth of Australia had formalized the recognition of the stolen generation through his statement of apology for the indigenous Australian.
Together with the Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd had received a warm welcome on their entrance in the Great Hall. This event is considered to be the largest recognition for the social injustice in the entire Australian history (Maiden, p. 1) In more in-depth analysis, the apology made by the Australian Prime Minister had garner vague and diverse feedback from the entire Australian people from both indigenous and non-indigenous. Some of the feedback says that the apology is a brighter action to lead the entire nation into reconciliation between the indigenous and non-indigenous people.
Also, some of the initial reactions on this, states that an apology is not enough and would only turned out to be meaningless if the apology will not be supported with the necessary procedures to ensure the progress of the positive beginning for reconciliation. Nevertheless, some of the feedbacks by the Australian people directly says their negative or oppositionist stand on the statement of apology by the prime minister and utter that a long been problem like racism in Australia will not be healed by just a simple public apology, rather compensation and effectual actions is needed.
(Guardian News and Media Limited 2008) The Table below shows the actual size and population statistics of the Australian indigenous people. Technically, the table states that there are 410,000 Australian indigenous people, as of the year 2001 Census. Approximately, there are 409,729 Australian people with Aboriginal foundation and there are 29,239 Australian populace of Torres Strait Islander origin. Furthermore, there are 19,552 Australian people that are recognized with both indigenous and Torres Strait Islander origin.
Slightly, the statistics of Australian indigenous women is greater that the aboriginal men with 230,994 female as compare to the 227,562 male, which is identical with the Australian non-indigenous distribution. (Human Rights & Equal Opportunity Commission) The Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law in the Faculty of Law, on the other hand, portray a significant independent function in the reconciliation process in the entire Australian Nation.
The Firm is active to held public debate on the major issues that is critical to the future of Australia: includes the native title, bill of rights, terrorism challenges and the reconciliation process in the entire country. With al of these participations of the firm, it can be argued that the greatest contribution of the Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law is the participation of the firm in the reconciliation process between the indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people. Essentially, the Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law had made their submission to the Australia 2020 Summit.
(Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law) Technically, the 20/20 summit was a two day meeting with the list of volunteers and people form the government. Held last 19th and the 20th day of April 2008, the summit tackles the ten specific policies from the summit, which include the aspect of Australian economy and government’s long health program strategy. Nevertheless, the issue of indigenous Australians is one of the most important subjects of the two day summit, which deals with the future of the indigenous Australian people. (ABC International)
Moreover, the topic 7 of the 20/20 summit talks about the future of Indigenous Australian people. The discussion states that in the year 2020 must be part of the national good information of the history inside the school classrooms. Health should have rapidly increased closed to the national average of non-indigenous Australians. Topic 7 then states that Australian indigenous people must increase the stage of employment, which Australian aboriginals must have their fair share of the country’s wealth, through equal employment or work opportunity. (The University of South Wales)
Furthermore, the discussion includes that Australian Indigenous people must be included to the legislative position of public policy in the entire Australian area and in Canberra. Indigenous leader must participate to the programs of government and lead autonomous aboriginal institutions of governance. Also, 20/20 summit states that the Australian constitution must spread the pride about the profound and lasting and forceful contribution of the Australian aboriginal people to the life of entire nation and protect their equal rights of citizenship in the country, as the original owners of the land.
(The University of South Wales) In addition to this, the national treaty must spread the honest information of the past and portray a positive outlook on the future of relationship amongst indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people. Nevertheless, the end conclusion of the 20/20 summit in the country, contributes to the brighter future of countries stable citizen relationship and to the reconciliation process between the indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people. (The University of South Wales)
In a deeper review of the subject, a treaty is essentially necessary for the entire Australian country in able to resolve the long been issue of racial discrimination between the indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people. Technically, a treaty is also known as a governmental agreement specifically designed to resolve a specific issue or conflict in the society. In Australia, a treaty is critical to connect the link between the indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people and resolve the historical issue of racial discrimination in the entire country.
Moreover, the Australian version of their treaty was designed to resolve the human right issues of the indigenous Australian and to create the positive relationship between the two different races, which have been the long intend of the nation. (Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission) Specifically, the Committee of Australian Treaty is accounted to negotiate and formulate an agreement that will deal with the following issues in the society: 1. ) “The protection of Aboriginal identity, languages, law and culture; National land rights legislation;
2. ) Conditions governing mining and exploration of natural resources on Aboriginal land; 3. ) Compensation for loss of traditional lands and for damage to those lands and traditional way of life; and 4. ) Right of Aboriginals to control their own affairs and establish their own associations for this purpose. ” (Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission) Nevertheless, Australian treaty is negotiated specifically to resolve the long been conflict of both past and present social injustice between the indigenous and the non-indigenous Australian people.
Moreover, the Australian treaty carries same goal or purpose to make the link and acceptance between the indigenous and non-indigenous people in the entire Australian community. In addition to this, the treaty in Australia will definitely support and empower the progress of reconciliation in the entire Australian nation. (Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission) According to Mark Leibler, the symbolic idea is significant in the reconciliation of Australian races, which he states that concentrating in just one side will never be the true essence of reconciliation.
Furthermore, he states that practicality is more important to achieve the unity of the country that reconciliation is not just the government’s work – rather it is the voyage of the entire nation and Australians must have done their part. (Reconciliation) Jackie Huggins, on the other hand, gives a clear emphasis to the right of an individual to choose the path that he or she wanted to take. Moreover, she states that indigenous and non-indigenous Australian must be protected on their political and legal rights, as an individual in able to sustain their culture and heritage of the land, as a unified nation.
(Reconciliation) Treaty of Waitangi is an agreement between the British Crown and Maori. Signed in the year 1840, the treaty had established the British law in New Zealand, when at the same time it assures the Maoris to their right on their culture and land. With this, the Treaty of Waitangi is renowned as the beginning article of the entire country of New Zealand. Nevertheless, the Treaty of Waitangi was a definite success in New Zealand law, which it serves as a brilliant agreement between the British crown and Maori of equal distribution of powers and rights on their land.
(Tourism New Zealand) However, despite of the success of the agreement, the treaty still records mishaps and problems on its history. The first mishap of the treaty is that in the English version of the agreement says that the Maori had give up their governorship or sovereignty or better known as kawanatanga, to the British Crown, when the truth is that Maori just agrees to share power with the British crown. (Tourism New Zealand) In addition to this, the Maori holds their edition that broader pledge of rights for Maori to the custody of their on hand treasure or better known as taonga.
While the English version states that the Maori had give up their control on their treasures like lands, fisheries and forests to the British crown, when the fact is that Maori had agrees to protection of their heritage such as language and culture. (Tourism New Zealand) With all of these mishaps and dilemmas of the Treaty of Waitangi, the Australians must be definite and specific to the context of their version of treaty in able to prevent and avoid the problems that the Treaty of Waitangi had experienced.
Nevertheless, the Australians must learn how to protect the true essence of their treaty to assure that they will never experience the same thing that had happened in Treaty of Waitangi, which was troubled by the diverse version of their agreement. On the other hand, the Australian version of treaty must have the essential legal avenues to resolve the conflict in its society in able to ensure the effective progress of reconciliation between the indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people.
Furthermore, the Australian treaty must have the legal procedures that straightforwardly deal with the past and present social injustice that indigenous Australians had experienced in able to restore the equal justice between the indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people. In the end, the Australia’s version of treaty is essential to achieve the nations intend of reconciliation between the indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people. Moreover, the treaty is definitely helpful to resolve the social injustice on Australian indigenous people from past and present.
Nevertheless, the Australian treaty will be supportive to restore the equal share of justice and human rights between the indigenous and non-indigenous Australian people. It is essential for Australian treaty to have a clear and definite context to efficiently prevent the predicaments that the Treaty of Waitangi had experienced. Finally, the Australian treaty must be symbolic, which both the indigenous and non-indigenous must work hard together in able to achieve the reconciliation between the two different Australian races.
Nonetheless, the treaty must convey equal terms on both indigenous and non-indigenous side to equally cater the needs of both parties. References BRI (n. d), RECONCILIATION ISSUES: Retrieved June 12, 2008 from http://www. bri. net. au/Reconciliation. html Global Ministries (2006), Reconciliation Australia: Retrieved June 12, 2008 from http://www. globalministries. org/eap/missionaries/reconcilliation-australia. html Guardian News and Media Limited (2008), Australia says sorry for racist past: Retrieved June 12, 2008 from http://blogs. guardian. co. uk/news/2008/02/it_has_been_a_long. html
ABC Darwin (2008), The long road to a short word: Retrieved June 12, 2008 http://www. abc. net. au/local/stories/2008/02/07/2157107. htm Link Up (NSW) & Tikka Jan Wilson (1997): In the Best Interest of the Child? Stolen Generation Aboriginal pain/White shame, Paragon Printers, pp 51-57, 125-126 S. Maiden (2008), Rudd apology sorry to Aboriginal Stolen Generations: Retrieved June 12, 2008 http://www. theaustralian. news. com. au/story/0,25197,23205437-601,00. html Human Rights & Equal Opportunity Commission (2006), A statistical overview of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Australia: Retrieved June 12, 2008 from http://www.
hreoc. gov. au/Social_Justice/statistics/index. html Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law (2008), Latest News: Retrieved June 12, 2008 from http://www. gtcentre. unsw. edu. au/ ABC International (2008), Australia’s report on 20/20 ideas summit released: Retrieved June 12, 2008 from http://www. radioaustralia. net. au/news/stories/200805/s2261233. htm? tab=latest The University of South Wales (2008), Australia 20/20 Summit: Retrieved June 12, 2008 from http://www. gtcentre. unsw. edu. au/news/docs/2020_Summit_Submission. pdf
Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission (2002), Treaty – Advancing reconciliation Murdoch University, Western Australia, 27 June 2002: Retrieved June 12, 2008 from http://www. hreoc. gov. au/about/media/speeches/social_justice/treaty_conference. html Reconciliation (n. d), Reconciliation in Australia – Current Practices and Future Directions: Retrieved June 12, 2008 Tourism New Zealand (2008), Treaty of Waitangi: Retrieved June 12, 2008 from http://www. newzealand. com/travel/about-nz/history/history-treaty-of-waitangi. cfm