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Jesuit Social Services – Submission to the Closing the Gap Refresh

In the ten years since the launch of the Closing the Gap initiative only one out of the seven targets is on track. This failure demonstrates a fundamental error in the way business is done with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

This Closing the Gap Refresh needs to be accompanied by genuine change in the way that the Federal, state and territory governments engage with Aboriginaland Torres Strait Islander people that sees Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in genuine partnership in the design, implementation and monitoring of policies and programs affecting their communities.

Our submission offers feedback on a number of the key areas that we believe must inform the development and implementation of the Closing the Gap framework:

  • assumptions underlying the ‘Gap’
  • ensuring that solutions are owned and led by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities
  • understanding the nature and impacts of entrenched disadvantage
  • including justice and child protection targets
  • incorporating a holistic conception of ecological justice.

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