The Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER) is a set of measures designed to protect children, make communities safe and build a better future for people living in Indigenous communities and town camps in the Northern Territory.
The NTER was announced by the former Australian Government in June 2007 following release by the Northern Territory Government of the Little Children are Sacred report which brought national attention to evidence of child abuse in the Northern Territory’s Indigenous communities.
The Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs announced the Government’s interim response to the review on 23 October 2008.
On 21 May 2009 the Government released its final response to the NTER Review in a joint announcement with the Northern Territory Government.
On the same day the Government released a paper, Future Directions for the Northern Territory Emergency Response, as a starting point for discussions on how certain measures could be changed, where necessary, in the context of the Government’s commitment to introduce legislation to remove the provisions of the NTER legislatoin that excluded the operation of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (RDA).
The Government consulted widely with Indigenous people in the Northern Territory between June and late August 2009 about future directions for the NTER. The Report on the NTER Redesign Consultations was released on 23 November 2009. An independent report on the consultation process is also available.
On 25 November 2009 the Government introduced legislation into the Parliament to reinstate the RDA to the NTER and redesign a number of NTER measures to improve them and make them sustainable in the long term. These changes and the reasons behind them were outlined in the Government’s Policy Statement: Landmark Reform to the Welfare System, Reinstatement of the Racial Discrimination Act and Strengthening of the Northern Territory Emergency Response, which was released on the same day.
The Government’s legislation was passed by the Parliament on 21 June 2010, and came into effect on 1 July 2010. The changes are summarised in Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER) Redesign.
About the Response
Information about the Northern Territory Emergency Response
2007 -2009 Media Releases
Media releases relating to the Northern Territory Emergency Response
The Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER) Review Board conducted an independent and transparent review of the NTER to assess whether the measures have been effective and their impact on individuals and communities.