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Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 22231

Bilateral Agreement on Service Delivery to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in New South Wales

Photo of Howard, John

Howard, John

Period of Service: 11/03/1996 to 03/12/2007

More information about Howard, John on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 17/04/2006

Release Type: Media Release

Transcript ID: 22231

The Hon. John Howard MP, Prime Minister of Australia and the Hon. Morris Iemma MP, Premier of New South Wales, have signed a landmark five year agreement to enhance access to services for indigenous people in NSW.

Under the agreement the Commonwealth and NSW will work together to implement the NSW Government's 10 year Aboriginal affairs plan Two Ways Together 2003-2013 which supports joint planning and service delivery in consultation with indigenous people. Collaborative and long term planning will help ensure that money spent on services delivers lasting outcomes.

Joint action has already been agreed for key priority areas, including:

building indigenous wealth and employment;

promoting an entrepreneurial culture in indigenous

communities; and

improving living conditions and health and social outcomes across a range of areas including reducing the incidence of middle ear infections in children (which can lead to loss of hearing); early childhood health and education intervention; improving Year 3 and 5 literacy and numeracy; increasing school retention rates; reducing incarceration and the level of family violence; and creating safer communities.

A key mechanism of the agreement will be the integration of Commonwealth and State planning and service delivery so that appropriate and accessible services are available to Aboriginal people in regional and local communities and urban areas of NSW.

An Intergovernmental Aboriginal Affairs Group comprising Commonwealth and NSW Government representatives has been established to oversee the implementation of the agreement.

This is the fourth bilateral agreement signed under the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) indigenous service delivery framework.

Transcript 22231