Table of Contents
2.1 Which one type of food outlet is used most often?
2.2 Licensed stores
2.3 Frequency of bush orders deliveries
2.4 Availability of food and other staples
2.5 Price, availability and quality
2.6 Affordability and changes in purchasing habits
2.7 Do children in the community have enough food to eat?
Welfare reform and engagement measures
7.1 Changes to employment and engagement opportunities
7.2 The removal of remote area exemptions
7.3 The abolition of CDEP
7.4 Income management
7.5 Incidence of humbugging
TNS Social Research was commissioned by the Office of Indigenous Policy Coordination Group (OIPC) within the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA) to develop and test a survey instrument to measure the perceptions of Government Business Managers (GBMs) of how the Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER) measures are working on the ground. This report details the findings of that survey.
All GBMs working with Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory1 were approached to participate in the research. The research comprised an online survey that was completed by 49 GBMs working with 71 of 77 communities.2 The findings detailed in this report therefore represent the perceptions and views of GBMs working with 92% of NTER communities. GBMs' responses are based on their in-community experience and perceptions of how effective the various NTER measures have been on the ground. The aim of the survey is to collect benchmark data that will be used to help assess whether conditions within the communities are improving as a result of the NTER measures.
The survey was designed in close consultation with OIPC, with a pilot study (incorporating cognitive interviewing techniques) used to validate the design. The survey is modular, and considers (in turn) aspects of the key measures of the intervention:
- Food availability
- Supporting families
- Law and order
- Housing and Land
- Welfare reform and engagement measures
- Whole-of-government approach
- The approach of the NTER as a whole
Following are the key findings within each of the survey modules.
Sixty nine percent of communities have a licensed community store, (the food outlets most often utilised according to the GBMs surveyed).
Most food groups/ staples appear to be commonly available, (fresh produce and over-the-counter medications available less often).
Associated levels of price, quality and availability of the various food groups vary, with the greatest fluctuation occurring for perishable fruit and vegetables.
Price increases are attributed predominantly to rising fuel prices, whereas quality and availability issues, although linked to cost, are coupled with varying levels of store management and efficiency.3
Changes to where community members purchase food is driven primarily by price and quality.
- Overall, GBMs agree that children in a large majority of communities have sufficient food to eat, however, in 14% of communities it is reported that this is not the case.
- GBMs report that this problem is due to a mix of contributory factors, but primarily due to families not being able to afford food (with some community members opting to spend the money on alcohol and gambling instead) a lack of cooking facilities (and an associated reliance on fast food).
School attendance and truancy remain an issue, with GBMs reporting an awareness of children who don't go to school at all in about two-thirds of the communities surveyed.
GBMs report that the situation has recently improved somewhat. This has occurred through increased parental support for attendance, which appears to have led to increased levels of actual attendance.
Improved attendance appears to have been driven by a mix of fear and engagement issues i.e. the initial threat of income cuts versus the community's greater awareness/ support of education, and subsequent increase in engagement/ interaction. GBMs surveyed believe that the lack of community support, parental enforcement and a general apathy towards education remain the greatest barriers to improved attendance levels.
91% of communities have a school nutrition program.
Nutrition education programs for parents are available in half (52%) of the surveyed communities.
This is followed by a range of mentions at lower levels (reported by GBMs in around a third of communities) i.e. outside school hours care, JET crèche facilities and child development programs.
The rates of uptake of these programs appear to be in line with availability - with services more widely available enjoying increasing levels of uptake.
Law and order
GBMs report that in 54% of communities, community members are drinking nearby (but outside of) prescribed areas. In 37% of these communities, GBMs report an increase in this behaviour. Alcohol restrictions in prescribed areas are reportedly 'displacing' drinkers to camps outside the prescribed areas.
GBMs have noticed that there is illicit substance use near the community but outside of prescribed areas in 10% of communities.
GBMs report that in just under half (45%) of surveyed communities, the level of violence has remained unchanged since their arrival in the community.
GBMs perceive a decrease in violence in 39% of communities, and attribute this drop to an increased police presence and reduced access to alcohol.
- In terms of alcohol use, although GBMs in a majority of communities (58%) report 'no change' in behaviour, GBMs in one quarter (24%) report a decrease in consumption.
- This reduction is considered to be largely due to the introduction of the NTER alcohol restrictions (although its ongoing success is debated by some due to lack of sanctions and offenders' tendency to simply shift behaviour).
- ome believe that the enforcement of alcohol restrictions in prescribed areas is simply displacing drinkers to camps outside prescribed areas.
- GBMs believe that petrol sniffing is not present in 62% of communities, but note that it has increased for 11% of communities and decreased for 9% of communities, with no change being reported for 16% of communities.
- This decrease in activity is considered due in part to the introduction of Opal fuel, but believe that community intervention/ pressure and the introduction of youth programs will be more effective to discourage problem behaviour in the future
- With regard to illicit drug use, GBMs in one third (30%) of communities report that it is not present in their community, and in another third (31%) rates of use remain unchanged. In 4% of communities GBMs report an increase in illicit drug use and in a further 4% of communities GBMs report a decrease
- Those observing a decrease consider it due to an increased police presence in the area and airport surveillance keeping access limited.
Increased usage of marijuana is reported in 16% of communities. In many of these communities marijuana is easy to access and is used as an alternative to the alcohol banned under the intervention.
GBMs in six out of ten communities report that solvent use is not present (59%). GBMS have noticed no change in solvent use for 11% of communities, a decrease in 4% of communities and an increase in 3%.
Night patrols are present in the majority of communities (58% overall). GBMs feel that the service is adequate in 61% of the communities where the service is provided - in that it is sufficiently resourced relative to the size of the community and works well together with the community, police and state imposed restrictions.
Where the service is considered inadequate, GBMs cite limitations in staff numbers, training, management, authority and accountability.
GBMs attribute police presence as having the greatest impact on reducing criminal activity (55% of communities), followed by youth diversion programs and elders law (both 42% of communities). GBMs believe Alcohol restrictions and night patrols are reducing criminal activity in more than one third of communities.
Housing and land
Community reaction to changes in the management of community housing are fragmented: GBMs report equal proportions of communities with a positive, negative and neutral reaction.
An increase in community clean-up activities is reported in 62% of communities, and an increase in housing maintenance is reported in half (49%) of communities.
Specific clean up and maintenance programs mentioned include the Community Clean Up (CCU), Indigenous Business Australia (IBA), Fixing Houses for Better Health (FHBH) and National Aboriginal Housing Strategy (NAHS).
There is also a notable increase in the availability of visitor accommodation (in one quarter of communities).
In about 60% of communities, GBMs agree that community members are involved in the maintenance of community housing (primarily through Community Development Employment Projects (CDEP). In more than three quarters of communities GBMs agree that community members are involved in clean up activities including CDEP and Work for the Dole. GBMs further mention community involvement in other, more general clean up activities as well.
Welfare reform and engagement measures
In most communities, GBMs have seen an increase in employment and training opportunities and an increase in interest in training opportunities. In almost a half of the communities, GBMs have seen an increase in interest in establishing a small business.
The removal of remote area exemptions is seen as having affected over half (53%) of the communities to some degree, especially with respect to the administration of welfare payments and eligibility. Negative effects include:
Looking for work in order to get payments is considered unsustainable by some GBMs due to limited work opportunities in more remote areas.
Some GBMs feel the introduction of fortnightly forms is stretching the literacy and numeracy skills of claimants.
GBMs report that one fifth of communities have been affected by the removal of CDEP. The impact is seen as largely negative: o Employers cannot hire the same numbers of workers previously sustainable o Municipal services are suffering o GBMs believe that the move from CDEP to 'work for the dole' is seen by community members as punitive.
Income management is implemented across the large majority (82%) of communities. GBMs believe that income management has been positively received in half of the communities, mostly by women and older people, and due to the increased allocation of money for food and other essentials.
Humbugging has reportedly decreased in 39% of communities.
In summary, the aspects of the whole-of-government approach which appear to be working relate to improvements in the flow of communication between agencies, and the coordination of services. This is largely attributed to the involvement of GBMs in facilitating communication between community members and agencies. Where the GBM is not involved 'in the loop', problems arise.
GBMs report that in the vast majority (90%) of communities some form of burden is placed on community members through visits by government officials or agencies to the community.
Although some believe this burden is inevitable, others feel that the load can (broadly) be reduced through better coordination and organisation across agencies.
GBMs report that in the majority of cases both community members and other government agencies appear to have at least some understanding of the GBM's role. GBMs in about a quarter of communities believe these groups have a good understanding of the GBM's role.
A majority of communities are seen as having low involvement in their own management. In communities that are highly involved, a number of characteristics are evident in community leaders, such as leaders who are educated and well informed, the involvement of women in leadership roles and leaders with a high degree of literacy and numeracy. Feedback from GBMs suggests that community involvement in community management may be associated with the size of the community (smaller communities appear to be more involved).
- GBMs in around eight out of ten communities report using interpreter services to varying degrees, though interpreters are used by GBMs "most of the time" in only 6% of communities, and in 61% communities' interpreters are rarely or never used by GBMs. In the majority of communities local interpreters are used, rather than formal interpreter services.
The NTER approach
GBMs report that in 34% of communities people have left as a result of the NTER measures.
On rating the impact of key NTER measures, the measures most extensively perceived by GBMs to have had a positive impact are:
- the introduction of Government Business Managers,
- fixing problems with existing housing,
- the introduction of income management,
- community clean up programs,and
- children's health checks/ follow ups,
- Those measures seen as having the least positive impact are:
- expanded safe houses,
- extra drug/alcohol rehabilitation services and
- additional child protection workers
- Measures that are seen as having the least positive impact are ones not fully implemented in the communities with lack of existing facilities or services.
- Overall, GBMs rate the communities as having a good understanding of the aims of the NTER and why it was launched, as well as a good acceptance of the NTER.
- Face to face is the preferred communication mode of GBMs.
- Communications products noted to be effective include:
- In language radio broadcasts / advertising
- Flip charts
- Aboriginal Resource and Development Services Inc. (ARDS) radio
- Fact sheets
- Free to air TV
1.1 Background and context
On 21 June 2007 the Australian Government announced the Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER) to protect Aboriginal children from abuse and build the basis for a better future.
The immediate nature of the response reflected the first recommendation of the Little Children are Sacred Report from the Northern Territory Board of Inquiry into the Protection of Aboriginal Children from Sexual Abuse - which asked that "Aboriginal child sexual abuse in the Northern Territory be designated as an issue of urgent national significance by both the Australian and Northern Territory governments..."
The NTER's main aim was the protection of children living in Aboriginal communities and town camps in the Northern Territory -making them safe in the short term and laying the basis for a better life for these children in the longer term.
Implementation of the NTER began soon after its announcement, when the first survey teams of Government officials were sent into communities. Aboriginal communities, numerous community living areas, outstations and town camps in or near major urban centres became part of the Emergency Response where prescribed under the NTER legislation.
The key measures of the NTER include the following:
- Extra teachers
- Extra classrooms
- Expansion of literacy programs
- Quality Teaching Package
- School breakfast and lunch program
- School boarding facilities (outside the NTER framework).
- Children's services and family support
- New and improved safe houses for families experiencing violence
- Additional child-protection workers and Aboriginal family and community workers
- Diversionary activities for young people.
Improving child and family health
- Health checks and follow-up treatment for children
- Specialist support for children who have been abused
- Extra drug and alcohol rehabilitation and treatment services.
Law and order
- More police in remote communities
- Bans on alcohol and pornography in prescribed areas
- Expanded night patrol services
- Additional legal services and interpreter services
- Child abuse intelligence desk.
Housing and land reform
- Fixing up existing houses and cleaning up communities
- Five-year leases on Aboriginal townships
- Building new houses, upgrading houses and new arrangements for the management of public housing in communities (outside the NTER framework).
Welfare reform and employment
- Income management of half of people's welfare payments to ensure children's needs are met
- Licensing of community stores
- Creating real jobs in communities outside Community Development Employment Projects (CDEP)
- Increased participation in remote areas including Work for the Dole activities
- Community Employment Brokers in communities.
- Northern Territory Emergency Response Taskforce
- Government Business Managers to live in and work with communities
- Logistical support from Defence
- Community engagement
- Ombudsman support to the NTER.
Government Business Managers (GBMs) were assigned to the prescribed communities in the Northern Territory to manage the delivery of Australian Government services. (The deployment of GBMs was a key activity supporting achievement of the ‘coordination' measure.)
The role of a GBM is to assist the community in understanding the measures of the intervention, and report on issues that may arise as a result. The GBMs also provide support for the roll out of NTER measures such as income management and alcohol restrictions.
GBMs have been the single face of the Australian Government at the local community level. Some have been servicing more than one community. At 30 June 2008, there were 51 GBMs servicing 72 communities. Remaining communities are serviced by the Indigenous Coordination Centres.
- have been providing the key liaison and consultation point in communities, including communicating the NTER measures at the local level, engaging with Traditional Owners and elders, and working collaboratively with other government representatives (including at the Territory and local levels);
- have been managing and coordinating the day-to-day activities of staff from different Australian Government agencies in the community; and
- have been providing feedback on progress and local issues and concerns through the NTER Operations Centre. Their knowledge and information has been guiding coordinated government action and decision making that is tailored to the particular needs of a community.
TNS Social Research was commissioned by the Office of Indigenous Policy Coordination group (OIPC) within FaHCSIA to develop and test a survey instrument to measure the perceptions of GBMs, particularly in relation to how the NTER measures are working on the ground. This report details the findings of that survey.
A census approach4 has been adopted, with surveys covering 92% of communities completed. GBMs have commented on all of the communities they work with (i.e. GBMs who work with multiple communities have completed separate surveys for each). The percentages quoted in this report indicate the frequencies of the survey measures among the communities.
GBMs are uniquely positioned to comment on the day-to-day success of the NTER operations:
- They live in or near the communities, and as such can see the measures in action.
- They regularly speak with community members.
- Through their coordination role they are (ideally) in contact with the myriad of Government agencies and departments dealing with the various measures of the NTER - accordingly they have a comprehensive knowledge of how Government efforts are enacted within the communities.
In November 2007, OIPC undertook a preliminary survey of GBMs to obtain qualitative data for whole-of-government monitoring of the NTER.
In April 2008, OIPC issued a request for quotations to engage a consultant to design and test a follow-up survey with GBMs, to be administered through the National Indigenous Information System (NIIS) (henceforth referred to as the GBM survey). Through the subsequent survey design process it was determined that the differences between the original survey and the GBM survey precluded cross comparison, and as such, the data collected through the GBM survey is effectively a stand-alone research project.
The main objective of the research is to establish whether GBMs perceive conditions are getting better on the ground among those communities subject to the NTER.
The survey systematically examines the main emergency response measures, collecting quantitative data about the extent to which (as perceived by the GBMs) the measures have been operationalised, as well as their efficacy. The survey also collects qualitative data (in the form of open-ended questions) to contextualise the quantitative measures and to provide additional insight into the survey findings.
A census approach has been adopted, with surveys covering 92% of communities completed. GBMs have commented on all of the communities they work with (i.e. GBMs who work with multiple communities have completed separate surveys for each). Nineteen GBMs reported for more than one community (4 GBMs had 3 communities, 15 GBMs had 2 communities).
Analysis of the length of time GBMs had been working within their communities at the time of the fieldwork indicates that approximately:
- 59% had been working in the community for more than 6 months
- 34% had been working in the community between 3 - 6 months
- 7% had been working in the community for less than 3 months.
The unit of analysis for this report is the community, therefore the figures quoted relate to the percentage of communities the GBMs provided information for not the percentage of GBMs (some GBMs cover more than one community).
It is intended that the survey will be repeated at regular intervals, and it has been designed in such a way that key measures can be tracked over time. The data contained in this report is effectively benchmark data, establishing a baseline against which future survey results can be compared and evaluated.
1.3.1 Details of survey development and fieldwork
The survey was developed in close collaboration with OIPC, and followed an iterative process ensuring that the final survey adequately covered the NTER measures. It was rigorously designed to minimise bias or respondent burden and to efficiently collect the required measures. The process is outlined below.
Project Inception Meeting - on the 12 May 2008, an inception meeting was held with team members from OIPC and TNS. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the development of the survey and agree project timings.
Survey measures document - on 20 May 2008, a survey measures document was provided by OIPC, containing a comprehensive list of the key measures of the survey.
First draft of the GBM survey - was sent to OIPC on 2 June 2008, incorporating the measures as outlined in the survey measures document, operationalised as survey constructs.
Survey Development Workshop - was held 5 June 2008, where the draft survey was discussed in detail, and further refined.
Feedback from other agencies - the draft survey was sent to a number of other agencies for comment (from 5 June 2008 onwards) and their feedback was incorporated into the survey design.
Pre-testing of the GBM survey using cognitive interviewing techniques - on 16 and 17 June 2008, TNS conducted surveys with five GBMs via the telephone. This pre testing included the administration of the survey, as well as cognitive interviewing techniques which considered:
Note that the quantitative results of the pre-test have not been included in this report, but the qualitative data has been considered.
- Question wording
- Question context and order
- Response categories and scales
- Problems of recall and retrieval
- A debrief of the findings of the pre-testing - was held on 20 June 2008 with further changes to the survey made on the basis of the pre-test results.
- Scripting/ coding and testing of the GBM survey in NIIS - commenced 24 June 2008. Further changes were made to the survey to facilitate scripting, with the survey finalised after five drafts in total.
- Fieldwork - took place between 7 and 15 July 2008. All GBMs were advised of the survey by email and followed up by telephone where necessary. A census approach was adopted. Surveys were completed for 71 communities in total (with GBMs who manage more than one community completing separate surveys for each).
4 A census approach attempts to survey all relevant potential respondents, rather than selecting a sample. For example, all GBMs working with Northern Territory communities were approached to participate (census), rather than only a selection (sample) of GBMs.
2. Food availability
2.1 Which one type of food outlet is used most often?
Within the majority of communities, licensed community stores are the type of food store most often used by community members.
Figure 1: Type of food store used most often
2.2 Licensed stores 5
GBMs report that 72% of communities have a licensed store within them.
Of the 20 communities (28%) where there is no licensed store, residents travel from between one and 250 kilometres to the nearest licensed store:
- In half (nine out of 20) communities residents travel between one and 50 kilometres
- In three out of 20 communities residents travel between 51 and 100 kilometres
- In one-quarter (five out of 20) communities residents travel more than 100 kilometres
- The average distance traveled by people from communities where there is no licensed store to the nearest licensed store is 81 kilometres.
a licensed store
Nearest community with
a licensed store
Modes of travel used to
get to nearest store
|Imangara (Murray Downs)||Murray Downs Station Store||1||Car or walk|
|Tara*||Neutral Junction Station Store||1||Car or walk|
|Wutunugurra (Epenarra)||Station store**||2||Car|
|Alice Springs Town Camps||Alice Springs||5||Car, walk or taxi|
|Manyallaluk (Eva Valley)||Barunga||60||Taxi|
|Pmara Jutunta(Ti Tree 6 Mile)*||Alice Springs||185||Car|
|Nturiya (Ti Tree)*||Alice Springs||212||Car|
|Wilora*||Alice Springs or Tennant Creek||250||Car|
|Jabiru Town Camps||NA||NA||NA|
* These communities receive bush orders. This means that food is regularly delivered to the community and so travel is not required to purchase food unless residents choose to do so.
** Licensed store due to open soon.
Some communities that do not have a licensed store receive bush orders, so that food is delivered to the community on a regular basis. Of the 11 communities that do receive bush orders:
- Two receive them more than once a week
- Six receive them weekly, and
- Three receive them fortnightly.
GBMs were asked to report on their knowledge of the availability of key food groups and other staples within their respective communities.
Figure 2: Availability of food and other staples
- GBMs in 30% of communities are not sure of the availability of over the counter medications, in 25% of communities they are not sure of the availability of fresh meat and poultry, and in 11% of communities they are not sure of the availability of baby foods / formulas and other baby supplies.
- According to GBMs frozen vegetables, frozen meat and poultry, and baby food and supplies, are always available in at least 68% of the communities.
- Fresh meat and poultry is never available (that GBMs know of) in around one in ten communities (9%), and only intermittently available (i.e. less often than once a month) in one in five communities (20%).
- GBMs have noted that over the counter medications are only intermittently available (i.e. less often than once a month) in 11% of communities.
GBMs were also asked to comment on variations in price, quality and availability of fresh fruit and vegetables and other staples since arriving in the community:
Figure 3: Changes to price, quality and availability of food in store
GBMs also commented on why they thought these changes had occurred:
Changes to the availability of fresh fruit and vegetables
The availability of fresh fruit and vegetables is largely attributed to changes in store management. Factors affecting increased availability include:
- GBMs in two communities report that increased food sales (a result they attribute to income management) have had a positive impact on availability.
- More frequent delivery of Bush Orders is seen as a factor in better availability of fresh food.
Factors affecting a decrease in availability include:
- Fresh fruit and vegetables are popular and sell out quickly, which in turn affects availability. This perhaps points to a problem of under-ordering.
- The relative financial risk of ordering perishable food (i.e. fresh fruit and vegetables) verses processed foods is also raised as a factor that may discourage local stores from ordering plentiful fresh food.
- Seasonal flooding restricting access to some communities is also affecting deliveries
Changes to the quality of fresh fruit and vegetables
GBMs in the majority of communities indicate that the quality of fresh fruit and vegetables is dependent on the management of the store: good quality fresh food is synonymous with good management, while poor management often leads to inconsistent levels of stock and produce quality.
Outback Food Stores6 are seen as well managed, and have considerably better quality and a considerably wider range of fruit and vegetables than previously available.
One GBM received positive feedback from the community that the food was "much better" now, with prices the same or cheaper and also notes that Outback Stores offer a wider range of food, with a policy to apply less of a markup on fresh fruit and vegetables.
Income management is also considered to be having a positive impact on the quality of food available, reportedly due to increased expenditure within the stores.
Changes to the price of fresh fruit and vegetables
GBMs believe that bottom line increases to wholesale food costs has caused the price of food in communities to rise. They attribute increasing food prices primarily to the rising cost of fuel (and the impact on food transportation costs). Inflation is also seen as a contributing factor.
Change of store management is also seen as a factor which has caused prices to fluctuate. A number of GBMs did, however, report that a change in management to some stores (Outback Food Stores) has reduced food prices.
GBMs in three-quarters of communities report that fresh fruit and vegetables are 'generally affordable':
Figure 4: Affordability of fresh fruit and vegetables
GBMs in just under one-third of communities report that community members have changed where they purchase their food.
Figure 5: Change in where community members buy food
GBMs believe the key factors that have prompted a change in where community members are buying their food are:
- the proximity of an Outback Store and the resulting effect on
- lower cost
- higher quality
- introduction of income management,
- (to a lesser extent) the introduction of bush orders in some communities Outback Stores has taken over the management of some stores, improving the quality, range and price of food that can be purchased closer to home7. GBM feedback indicates:
- In one example community members no longer use the store 50km away, as quantity, quality and prices have "dramatically improved" in the community as a result of Outback Stores.
In addition, GBMs have noticed that when income management is attached to a particular store it increases patronage, which in turn increases quality and variety. One GBM also notes that income management has made it possible for families to save/ budget to shop at larger supermarkets.
Less positively, one GBM reports that community members are being forced to change because:
The quality and variety of food available in the store has worsened over the past six months. Community members are (now) shopping in the neighboring community.
Question: B14. Have community members changed where they shop because ...
Base: n=21 (small sample size:
results are indicative)
|the previous shop was not licensed||20%||80%||0%|
|a combination of reasons||70%||20%||10%|
|the affordability of food||40%||55%||5%|
|they can't pool/ afford transport costs||10%||80%||10%|
Where changes have occurred in community food shopping habits, it is more likely a result of positive "pull factors" (better quality, price, variety), than negative factors. In a minority of communities low quality and high prices are pushing community members to travel.
GBMs report that children in seven out of ten (69%) communities have enough to eat. In just under one fifth (17%) of communities GBMs report that they 'don't know'.
Figure 6: Do children in the community have enough food to eat each day?
A number of GBMs feel that the children in their communities are looking healthier, are more alert, and have more energy: indicative of children who have enough to eat. A number also reason that the child health checks have not revealed any malnutrition.
Reasons given by GBMs that children have enough to eat include formal programs, such as;
- Income management,
- The introduction of the School Nutrition Program (which provides breakfast and lunch),
- A Red Cross breakfast program
Greater choice and quality of food at the local store is also seen as encouraging healthier eating. Where it is reported that children do not have enough food to eat each day, a number of reasons are given:
- Most commonly the cost of food and the cost of travel to the store being prohibitively expensive.
- This was followed closely by money for food being spent on alcohol, drugs or gambling.
- In two communities it was stated that many families do not eat proper meals (eating mostly take-away food),
- In one community the absence of functioning kitchens is cited.
5 Licences are issued to community stores in the Northern Territory that can demonstrate a capacity to participate in the requirements of the income management regime; have a reasonable quality, quantity and range of groceries and consumer items, including healthy food and drink, available and promoted at the store; and have sound financial structures, retail practices and governance practices.
6 Outback Stores are not-for-profit retail food stores operating in a number of communities in remote locations. The Outback Stores program is a federally funded initiative administered by Indigenous Business Australia (IBA). The program is committed to improving the long term viability of community stores to ensure all Indigenous people living in remote locations have access to healthy and affordable food.
7 Indigenous Business Australia (IBA) received additional funding for Outback Stores as part of the NTER, to accelerate the rollout of stores under Outback Stores management, and to take on the management of some unviable stores.
3.1 Changes in attendance
GBMs were asked about their awareness of children truanting from school:
Figure 7: Awareness of child truancy
- In approximately two thirds of communities (65%) GBMs are aware of children who don't go to school at all.
- As noted by GBMs, a considerably larger proportion of communities experience children truanting in the afternoon, rather than in the morning.
- In about one in ten communities (11%) the GBM is not aware of any truancy.
- GBMs in 13% of communities are not able to comment on the prevalence of truanting.
GBMs were further asked to comment on changes they had seen in relation to the local school(s).
Figure 8: Changes to attendance, truancy, parental support and engagement with school
In one-fifth (20%) of communities GBMs note an increase in school attendance. They also report a reduction in attendance for 6% of communities and fluctuating attendance for 21%. GBMs have noted no change in attendance for more than half (51%) of communities.
What has caused the change in school attendance?
Reasons attributed to increased attendance include initial concerns that income support payments would be linked to school attendance8, and 'No School No Store'9 initiatives, if children did not attend school. More positive reasons mentioned by GBMs as drivers of increased attendance included police involvement in school and sports, new school principal and staff and the School Nutrition Program. Parents' taking more interest in their children's schooling is also cited as a driver of increased attendance.
It is worth noting that one GBM reported that, while community school attendance increased when the intervention attendance measures were announced, it has subsequently declined as community members discovered that there are no consequences for non attendance.
External factors, such as funerals, sports events, festivals, Sorry Day, the seasons/ weather are listed as reasons that reduce children's school attendance. Poor community involvement with the school is also cited.
What has caused the change in child truancy?
Reasons given for decreases in truancy include incentive programs and broader community factors, including:
- the School Nutrition Program,
- programs such as placing attendance rolls on community notice boards,
- less tolerance of truancy within community,
- a renewed community pride and spirit.
Increases in child truancy are largely attributed to a lack of support from community and parents to attend school, and a general apathy about education.
It is also reported that children are expected (and themselves expect) to attend community events such as funerals, leading to absenteeism.
What has caused the change in parental support for children attending school?
The increase in parental support for school attendance is mainly related to the community's greater awareness and support for education.
- One GBM states "because of NTER there is more awareness of why it is parents' responsibility to send their children",
- Another similarly reports the positive impact of "community meetings led by the Indigenous school principal to encourage parents to take responsibility".
- The school nutrition programme has helped parents see the value of school attendance.
One GBM reports that while parental support for school attendance is high, parental enforcement of attendance is not. As to a lack of parental support for school attendance, GBMs report:
- Many people are reluctant to discipline their own children.
- Cultural factors relating to mixing genders and ages in schools is not conducive to encouraging parental support for attendance.
- Bullying and disruption by other children may be reasons for parents keeping some children at home. Access and transportation in some areas also remains an issue, with one GBM citing an example of 25 children based at an outstation that have no transport to get to school, and no teacher willing to come to them.
What has caused the change in the level of parental engagement or involvement in the school?
Reasons for active parental engagement include parents volunteering in the Red Cross project, better community engagement, awareness and involvement regarding education. One GBM states that in the community there is now "more awareness of the need to look after their children and that education is a major part of their children's future".
The school principal is seen as an important factor in parental engagement. One GBM states that "the school Principal (is) seen as the most important person in terms of non-Indigenous (people)".
By contrast, it is reported that one school's policy of not allowing community members to eat at the kid's kitchen, and monitoring visitors entering the school grounds has discouraged parental involvement.
In some communities there is a general apathy in terms of parental engagement with schooling: "adults here do not care about, or value education". In another community "Parents do not trust staff at the school".
GBMs were asked about the availability of a school nutrition program, as well as the parents' level of involvement with that program.
Figure 9: School nutrition program
Nine in ten communities have a school nutrition program. In just under half of those communities parents are reportedly involved in the program.
8 When the NTER was announced there were plans to enforce school attendance by linking income support and family assistance payments to school attendance across the NTER communities. These plans were not implemented.
4. Supporting families
4.1 Availability of parenting programs
GBMs indicated the availability of programs in their communities. Ranked by availability:
Figure 10: Percentage of communities where service is known to be available
GBMs also indicated their perceptions of the rate of uptake of these programs within the communities they work in:
Figure 11: Changes in the use of services
In general, services more widely available are purportedly enjoying increasing levels of uptake. Of those aware of the JET10 crèche program, 46% are aware of an upgrade to the program.
5. Law and order
5.1 Post-GBM changes in law and order
Detailed below are GBM perceptions of changes in the levels of anti-social behaviour since coming into their respective communities:
Figure 12: Changes in the levels of ...
Changes to the levels of violence
GBMs in a large proportion of communities (45%) report that the level of violence has not changed since their arrival. In 39% of communities GBMs perceive a decrease in the level of violence, and in 7% of communities there has been an increase.
The key reasons GBMs have given for decreasing levels of violence relate to an increased police presence and reduced access to alcohol.
- Installation of police stations in communities, higher visibility of police, increasing hours of police, and police having greater participation in the community are seen as important contributors to decreasing violence levels. One GBM comments that perpetrators of child abuse and domestic violence moved from the community when the police arrived.
- Reduced access to alcohol, via restrictions and reduced opening hours of outlets, is also seen as a significant factor in decreasing levels of violence. One GBM specifically mentions that the Community Alcohol Management Plan, which commenced mid-March 2008, has been an effective measure against excessive takeaway alcohol sales and related violence, stating:
Accident and Emergency admissions related to alcohol have fallen 50%, and cell nights have fallen 90%. It is fantastic! People are sleeping too.
- The reduced levels of petrol sniffing in some communities are also believed to have had a positive impact in reducing community violence.
- In some communities decreased marijuana usage is also reportedly linked to a reduction in violence.
In communities where an increase in violence is reported:
- One GBM reports that more alcohol is coming into the community. Combined with a lack of police, this has contributed to an increase in violence.
- Other GBMs indicate that violence as a way of dealing with problems is entrenched in the community: "the ability of people in the community to deal with problems as they arise has not improved".
- Another GBM states, "There has been a long standing feud ... that continues to cause tension amongst the members of the community".
- In another community police are reporting higher levels of domestic violence in particular.
Changes to the levels of alcohol use
GBMs report that in more than half (58%) of communities the incidence of alcohol use is unchanged. In around one-quarter (24%) of communities GBMs have seen a decrease in alcohol use and in 14% they report an increase.
Reduced alcohol use is mainly attributed to the introduction of the NTER alcohol restrictions. The alcohol restrictions are seen to be most effective when operating along side police enforcement/ presence, strong leadership, and people wanting to work (and therefore be sober).
- Some GBMs report stronger compliance at the beginning of the NTER when community members were unsure of the consequences and they suggest that a subsequent lack of police presence in some communities may have led to a rise in complacency.
It is reported that while the alcohol restrictions and permit system have discouraged drinking within the community proper, in many cases the location for drinking has simply shifted. People are travelling outside of restricted areas to drink.
- It was reported by one GBM that the camps outside of the community have experienced increased drinking and associated violence. An associated reduction in disturbances within the community has reportedly occurred.
In two communities "grog runs" - going in search of cheaper, stronger alcohol - have become more common.
- One GBM indicates that this is an unintended consequence of income management: people are searching to maximise the amount of alcohol they can buy with the proportion of their funds which is not income managed.
Kava is also mentioned as a factor: reportedly elders see the ban on kava as being replaced by increased alcohol use.
One GBM reports that a lack of "responsible" drinking messages compared to the current "prohibition" message, is giving "inconsistent messages to the community".
Changes to the level of petrol sniffing
GBMs believe that petrol sniffing is not present in 62% of communities, but note that it has increased for 11% of communities and decreased for 9% of communities, with no change being reported for 16% of communities.
Where petrol sniffing had increased, the primary reasons cited include the introduction of alcohol restrictions (petrol sniffing as an alternative), lack of activities for youth/ general boredom, and, notably, the influence of sniffers from other communities introducing young people to the habit.
According to GBMs the reporting of petrol sniffing incidents facilitates early and successful interventions. A proactive community response to sniffing, including diversionary youth programs, the implementation of management plans (e.g. Shared Responsibility Agreement, with a community requiring the reporting of substance abuse) and general community pressure to discourage the behaviour, are reportedly the most effective means of reducing abuse.
The introduction of Opal fuel is also mentioned by a number of GBMs as a contributing factor in reducing petrol sniffing.
Changes to the level of illicit drug use (other than marijuana)
GBMs in one third (30%) of communities report that illicit drug use is not present in their community, and in another third (31%) rates of use remain unchanged. In 4% of communities GBMs report an increase in illicit drug use and in a further 4% of communities GBMs report a decrease.
It seems that illicit drugs, other than marijuana, are rare. Two GBMs mentioned that they have heard talk of illicit drug use in their communities. Another GBM mentioned crystal methamphetamine (ice) coming via a nearby mining community.
Increased police presence and surveillance at airports is keeping illicit drug use at comparatively low levels.
Changes to the level of marijuana use
The increasing use of marijuana in communities is reportedly in response to alcohol restrictions: with a reduced availability of alcohol, people are switching to marijuana.
The prevalence of marijuana use in households is also highlighted by a number of GBMs who report that Community Clean Up (CCU) survey teams are finding evidence of marijuana use in households visited (e.g. smoking implements). There is concern that there is increasing complacency around marijuana use as compared to the early days of the NTER intervention.
Marijuana is reportedly easy to access, and is often being brought into communities by visitors from the larger towns.
Where a decrease in marijuana use is reported it is attributed to an increased police presence and the willingness of community members to report usage to police.
Changes in solvent use
GBMs in a majority of communities report that solvent use does not occur (59% of communities). GBMs in 23% of communities 'don't know'. Of the remainder:
- GBMs have noticed no change in solvent use for 11% of communities,
- In 3% of communities it has reportedly increased and
- In 4% percent of communities it has reportedly decreased.
Of those few communities whose GBMs report that solvent use has increased, they indicate that users are in the same group as those who are sniffing petrol, and that 'the problem comes in with people from other communities'.
Decreasing solvent use is attributed to increased visibility of police in communities, and also that retail outlets now have such products locked away and not on display.
GBMs were asked about the visibility of drinking within communities:
Figure 13: Drinking outside of prescribed areas
GBMs report that in 54% of communities, community members are drinking nearby (but outside of) prescribed areas. In 37% of these communities, GBMs report an increase in this behaviour.
The reasons given for this relate to the introduction and enforcement of alcohol restrictions in prescribed areas, which is 'displacing' drinkers to camps outside the prescribed areas. One GBM reported that because there are alcohol limits in the community hard drinkers prefer to drink in 'social' groups with no restrictions at the drinking camp which is about 60kms from the community.
In the one community where drinking outside of prescribed areas has decreased, the change is attributed to the restrictions of take-away sales: people are reportedly drinking at the local pub instead.
GBMs were also asked if community members were similarly using illicit substances other than alcohol. Of the total sample:
- GBMs in 10% of communities report that there is illicit substance use near the community, but outside of prescribed areas
- GBMs in 45% of communities report that there is no illicit substance use
- GBMs in a further 45% of communities report that they don't know.
Figure 14: Presence of community night patrols in the community
Figure 15: Regularity of night patrols in community
GBMs report that in 61% of communities with a night patrol (25 out of the 41 communities), the service is adequate.
Where a community's night patrol is perceived by GBMs to be adequate, it is well resourced, supported by the community and police involvement, and works with other measures like alcohol restrictions. Having senior and well respected members of the community on the night patrol is also seen as an effective measure:
Community self policing is working well as a number of the Night Patrol Staff are senior TO's (traditional owners) or respected strong community members
Where a community's night patrol is perceived by GBMs to be inadequate there is:
- a lack of resources (such as a vehicle)
- lack of staff, lack of training
- poor management
- humbugging of staff
- lack of authority
- lack of accountability
- services too irregular to be effective.
One GBM describes a lack of accountability as a key barrier to the effectiveness of the night patrol. However, the implementation of action plans by the GBM and police has increased accountability and effectiveness of patrols.
Figure 16: Effectiveness of measures in reducing criminal activity
GBMs attribute police presence as having the greatest impact on reducing criminal activity (55% of communities), followed by youth diversion programs and elders law (both 42% of communities). GBMs believe alcohol restrictions and night patrols are reducing criminal activity in more than one third of communities.
As figure 16 shows, safe houses are not present in most NT communities. Where GBMs have noted the presence of a safe house, the following factors are deemed to affect the use and adequacy of the house:
- The type of building is a contributing factor; one GBM comments that the container model selected for the community's safe house is viewed as an inferior facility, impacting on its use.
- It is reported that in one community, the safe house is usually empty because (in crisis situations) women seek the protection of other family members first.
- Another GBM reasoned that the safe house was adequate because it is an actual house.
6. Housing and land
6.1 Reaction to changes in the management of community housing
Figure 17: Reaction to changes to management of community housing
GBMs report that in ten communities alternative community housing arrangements are preferred11:
- A common preferred arrangement is for the community to manage their own housing, whereby the community allocates and manages houses, including employing a community member to undertake the repair work, maybe in conjunction with an annual visit by a qualified trades person.
- Having control over who is allowed to reside in-community is seen as desirable,
- GBMs report that some people want to allocate housing by arrangement between families, as has traditionally been done.
- Others want to be consulted as to which 'outsiders' are permitted to reside in a community, or if people are to be removed.
- Accommodation for single people is also wanted.
- One GBM reports 'the need for several small enclosed sleeping areas under a common roof with a central ablution block to allow families to stay together but have their own living areas'.
Figure 18: Changes to community housing
An increase in community clean-up activities is reported by GBMs in 62% of communities, and an increase in housing maintenance is reported by GBMs in half (49%) of communities.
What new kinds of visitor accommodation are now available?
In 25% of communities GBMs have seen an increase in the availability of visitor accommodation.
- The most common type of visitor accommodation that is available is in the GBM complex. It is reported that the GBM complex contains between 4 and 9 separate units. These GBM complexes are primarily 'donga' style, built from old shipping containers.
- The only alternative accommodation mentioned was that of a nearby resort, and of the conversion of a house into two flats for Central Land Council (CLC) ranger program use.
What types of maintenance of community housing are now occurring?
GBMs indicate that the Community Clean Up (CCU) program is primarily responsible for recent maintenance to community housing. Other programs that have facilitated maintenance of community housing include:
- Indigenous Business Australia (IBA)12 ,
- Fixing Houses for Better Health (FHBH) and
- Ngangganawili Aboriginal Health Service (NAHS) funding.
The types of maintenance undertaken by the CCU include basic maintenance in each house not deemed for demolition, which covered carpentry, plumbing and electrical. Other repairs mentioned included repair of septic tanks, replacing kitchen shelving, interior and exterior house painting, and closing in of verandas to create more living area.
- A number of GBMs comment that the CCU program has freed up Council funds allowing a focus on completing some major maintenance works on some homes.
- One GBM also notes that the Community Clean Up program provided funds for house painting as part of the Work for the Dole activities, making a major positive impact on the cleanliness of houses in past two months.
GBMs were asked: "Are community members involved in the maintenance of community housing?"
- In 34% of communities "Yes, before my arrival"
- In 17% of communities "Yes, after my arrival"
- In 40% of communities "No"
What kind of involvement does the community have in housing repair?
Just over half of the GBMs report that community members are involved in housing repair, primarily through CDEP. Specific activities include house painting, maintenance of windows, doors, leaking taps, fencing, and cleaning up yards with bobcats: 'everything excluding that required to be done by qualified trades'.
What kind of involvement do community members have in community cleanup activities?
GBMs report that more than three-quarters (77%) of communities are involved in clean up activities. Incentives/ drivers of involvement include:
- Work for the Dole
- Local police organising clean up days
- Participation in the 'Tidy Town' competition or similar
The community is involved in the general clean up at various levels. Specific types of cleanup activities mentioned include rubbish removal, cleaning and painting of houses, building fencing, water blasting, removing dirt piles, painting rocks, improving gardens and keeping yards clean, repairing public facilities (basketball and football), planting trees, tidied public gathering points and painting public buildings.
It was also stated that children are being involved in cleanup activities (e.g. some clean up days arranged by police or "clean-up time" at the school).
11 New property and tenancy management arrangements have been introduced for public housing in 64 Northern Territory Indigenous communities where the Australian Government holds five-year leases. For more information see http://www.fahcsia.gov.au/nter/docs/factsheets/housing_land_reforms/factsheet_improved_housing.htm
12 Indigenous Business Australia (IBA), the former Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commercial Development Corporation (CDC) is an Australian Government statutory authority set up to assist and enhance Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander self-management and economic self-sufficiency. IBA works closely with the private sector and local community groups to foster economic independence and home ownership among Indigenous Australians to achieve this whole-of-Government objective in service delivery. IBA offers a range of programs designed to develop initiatives for long term asset accumulation.
7. Welfare reform and engagement measures
7.1 Changes to employment and engagement opportunities
GBMs note the following in relation to changes in employment and training opportunities:
Figure 19: Changes to employment, training and small business
GBMs report that just over half (53%) of communities have been affected by the removal of remote area exemptions. The effect largely relates to the on-flow of changes this brings to the eligibility for and administration of welfare payments, including many community members;
- Now needing to regularly deal with Centrelink, filling in fortnightly activity statements,
- Having to sign an activity agreement with a Job Network Member, and are now eligible for Work for the Dole.
Community members must now look for work in order to get their payments. This has particular implications in communities with no employment prospects. GBMs report that:
- Some communities have no employment opportunities, (nor the prospect of future opportunities). Travelling the long distances required to participate in work is not cost effective.
- Further, people face penalties if they don't apply for jobs, especially problematic when "there are no jobs for people to apply for".
- Centrelink's requirement to complete fortnightly forms creates difficulties for community members who have limited numeracy and literacy skills. This can result in breaches and loss of money with a lack of understanding by community members as to the reason for their benefits ceasing:
For a time there has been much confusion over the need to fill in Centrelink forms fortnightly - there have been cases where their benefits have been cut off and they have not understood why.
Another GBM reports that the removal of the exemptions has aroused a general resentment in the community; however, the lack of consequences for failing to meet obligations has meant there has been little other impact.
A number of GBMs also report issues with Job Network providers.
- Job Network Members are not in operation in their communities
- Job Network providers underperforming (meaning there are no programs for people to participate in, creating a lasting negative impression among community members)
- Similarly, Work for the Dole programs are reported to be absent in many communities.
More positively, one GBM reports that, following the removal of exemptions, community members have been actively participating in training and other programs in the community, and are actively engaged in seeking opportunities within the region.
GBMs believe that local businesses and services have been affected by the removal of CDEP in some communities.
Feedback is predominantly negative. GBMs report that, as well as having negative effects on the individuals who were working under the CDEP, the abolition has negatively affected the community overall.
The abolition of CDEP has meant that businesses and services that were previously using CDEP labour are now unable resource the same number of workers.
- For example, a tourist industry in one community relied on CDEP workers, but following the abolition of the program they are no longer able to fund as many positions.
A number of GBMs indicate that local Councils have in the past relied largely on CDEP labour: without this labour, municipal services are suffering: 'town looks shabby and a wide range of services have stopped'.
Without CDEP, businesses can not afford to employ as many workers, and hence those 'excess' workers are now unemployed, and have been moved into Work for the Dole.
- One GBM states that the term 'Work for the Dole' is seen negatively, and not viewed well by the community.
- Another GBM indicates that Work for the Dole was a "failure" in his community, with the Job Network failing to provide services since the abolition of CDEP.
A large majority of communities have had income management implemented, the majority after the arrival of the GBM.
Figure 20: Changes to community housing
GBMs report that income management has been positively received in half of the communities.
Figure 21: Changes to community housing
Are there any particular groups of people within the community who have a positive attitude towards income management?
GBM feedback reveals distinct groups within the communities who have a positive attitude towards income management.
- The most commonly named groups include women, and in particular mothers and grandmothers.
- Also mentioned are older people, traditional owners, non-drinkers, clinic workers, the disabled and those people who are victims of humbugging.
A few GBMs state that most people in the communities seem to share positive attitudes towards income management.
The positive attitude toward income management primarily relates to the increased allocation of money for food and other essentials.
- Income management has allowed money to be available for food and for people to manage their funds so it is not spent on harmful items such as alcohol and drugs.
- It is also reported that income management helps people protect their money from the demands from/ obligations to family members.
Women's support of income management also relates to increased financial contributions by men to essentials: money is going towards rent, food electricity, rather than on alcohol and drugs.
Women have told me that until income management commenced, men would usually use most if not all of their income on grog and ganga. Now they have no choice but to contribute to household expenses.
Impact on the community
As already noted, income management means that more food and essential items, such as whitegoods, are being purchased. Also, increased spending on food in the stores means the stores can become more viable. One GBM reports that the community is spending more on 'positive lifestyle products' such as bicycles and sporting equipment for children.
GBMs report that the amount of gambling has reduced, and also the amount of money being wagered on individual games has reduced, (in one reported case from $50 to $5 per round). The reduction in gambling can also be attributed to the varying paydays for Centrelink benefits (instead of everyone having the same payday).
It should, however, be noted that income management is not always popular with community members:
- While having less money for gambling, alcohol and drugs, is seen as a positive by many community members, some GBMs point out that it also makes income management unpopular with some groups. One GBM reported that some young people find ways to work around income management by selling items such as videos for cash.
- GBMs also note that, because of income management, there is now less money available for transport, and therefore it is more difficult for people to attend funerals and other special events.
- Another GBM reports that their community views income management as a negative move by the intervention vis a vis the lack of consultation and how it is being applied.
As noted, one of the positive outcomes of income management appears to be the decrease in the incidence of humbugging. GBMs report that they have seen a decrease in just under two-fifths of communities.
Figure 22: Change in level of "humbugging" in community
8. Whole-of-government approach
8.1 Community burden GBMs report a burden of some kind in 90% of communities.
Figure 23: Burden on community of visits by Government officials and agencies
Reducing the burden
- Some GBMs feel that the burden is unavoidable: all visits to communities are essential if government services are to be provided. The burden is an unintended consequence of more intensive service delivery.
- Others feel that this burden can be reduced through better coordination of visits between agencies.
- A common idea was for the GBM network to coordinate and filter all visitors to community: "retaining a GBM who filters and targets the visits and activities and ensures programs are relevant and delivered effectively and in consultation with the community".
- It is suggested that there should be more reliance on GBMs for relevant consultation/communication with locals, rather than sending out several officials from each of various different agencies.
- Many GBMs report that the number of visits by officials could be reduced, and the length of visits increased. GBMs report that some visits seem unnecessary, and community members are also wary. One GBM reports that elders in the community feel that despite numerous visits from officials over the years, the situation hasn't changed much.
- It is suggested that some information required by Government departments can be obtained without visiting the communities. One GBM suggests that (in some circumstances) a teleconference can achieve as much as a two hour visit.
- To reduce the number of separate visits by officials it is suggested that communities have liaison forum days, whereby all agencies within a particular field or department visit on the one day.
- Another suggests that visits be staggered instead of many visitors coming on one day.
- Providing the community with more notice of pending visits is desired.
- Better/ more visitor accommodation can also facilitate longer, more productive visits.
In the majority of cases both community members and other government agencies have at least some understanding of the GBM's role. The levels of understanding perceived by GBMs between the two groups are quite similar.
Figure 24: Level of understanding of the business manager's role
In around eight out of ten communities, GBMs report using interpreter services to varying degrees, though only 6% use interpreters most of the time and 61% rarely or never use interpreters. The majority use local interpreters rather than formal interpreter services.
Figure 25: Use of interpreter services
What is working?
The aspects of the whole-of-government approach which are reported as working primarily relate to improvements in the level of communication between agencies and the coordination of services. In some part, this appears to be due to the role of GBMs as a point of contact to facilitate communication. In situations where the GBM is involved in the flow of communication between community members and agencies, things seem to be working well:
- Specifically, GBMs report that communication between the GBM and the Indigenous Coordination Centres (ICC), the CEO, Centrelink, and the Community Employment Broker (CEB) are working well.
- While GBMs indicated that better coordination of visits, and less visits by officials overall is needed, they frequently highlight the Visitor Officer Notification system as one aspect of the whole-of-government approach which is (when utilised) working well.
- Other working aspects include youth programs, income management and the community store, community housing, health checks and night patrol. One GBM indicates that a number of different agencies are working more cooperatively around the petrol sniffing problem.
- The appointment of GBMs themselves, as a point of contact for agencies and community members alike, is an important factor in facilitating smoother coordination of services in the community. GBMs see their role as being a single point of information and advice for the local community on any program and its relation to community goals and attitudes.
- Another GBM reports that having a GBM in the community has allowed a process to build trust and relationships with locals and through that they are able to explain the Government's aim and purpose.
What is not working?
Although many GBMs report improvements in the level of communication between agencies, some still report barriers to information sharing that relate to communication problems between GBMs and some government agencies. In situations where the GBM is not included 'in the loop', problems arise:
- One GBM comments that agencies are "still working in silos" and that there is a reluctance to share information.
- Another GBM suggests that there needs to be 'appropriate' communication between agencies and better information flows, internally and externally, to ensure local intelligence collected by GBMs is fed into strategic levels across agencies and into policy making.
- Specifically, one GBM reports that "useful intelligence in GBM reports is not being communicated to the strategic level or across agencies" and that "experience at the working level in communities appears not to be being used in policy making."
- Problems relating to lack of information sharing between GBMs and some government agencies are still being reported. GBMs see potential to strengthen some programs and for them to operate more effectively if GBMs are brought more into the loop.
GBMs were asked to rate the level of engagement they perceived within the community.
Figure 26: Involvement of community in its own management
In communities that are highly involved in their own management, a number of characteristics are evident in both community leaders and the community as a whole:
- strong leadership
- leaders who are educated and well informed
- leaders who display good governance
- the involvement of women in leadership roles
- leaders with a high degree of literacy and numeracy
- smaller communities
Specific examples of how the community is involved in their management include taking particular action on issues or holding large public meetings.
There are a number of GBMs who state a concern about the effect that changes to the Local Government arrangements will have on community involvement, particularly in regards to the community becoming less engaged in local decision making, feeling they will have little say in what goes on. One GBM states there has been a 'complete loss of interest since the Shire took over'.
A 'general lack of interest' and 'weak leadership' is also cited as reasons for no or low level of involvement, as well as an expectation that "someone else will always look after the community". Council members not being present in the community is also highlighted as a problem, as are vested interests by more powerful families or individuals.
Cultural issues are also raised. One GBM indicates that there is a poor understanding of "white" political structures, systems and processes. Another GBM notes that not translating community meetings in-language is discouraging participation. (As discussed earlier, there is a relatively low incidence of GBMs (6%) using interpreters most of the time.)
9. The NTER approach
9.1 Perceived impact of the NTER
GBMs were asked to rate the impact of the key NTER measures.
Figure 27: Impact of NTER measures
Those GBMs who rate a measure as having no impact or a negative impact were asked to explain why they felt that way. Responses are summarised below:
Providing more police in remote communities
- Staffing levels at the police station have not changed/ no additional police services to community
- Police do not patrol in community because the distance is too far
- No accommodation for visiting police
- Police resources are limited
- Lack of trust of police due to reports of police being 'heavy handed'
Alcohol and pornography bans in remote communities
- Community still has access to alcohol and drinking still occurs
- People are now binge drinking mid-strength beer in order to get effect of full strength
- No police presence or night patrols/ drinking is difficult to police
- Drinking remains to be only an occasional problem
- People have travelled away from the community for extended periods of time in order to have more access to alcohol
- Restrictions push drinking outsider the prescribed area, which has implications for health and safety of drinkers e.g. drinking spot is on side of highway, no shade, no toilets or water.
- Community was already 'dry' so there has been no change
- Community has continued to operate under an alcohol management program
- Not much knowledge about pornography
- Definition as to what is defined as pornography is poorly understood
- Communities do no know how to talk about pornography and why it should be banned. Now it is called restricted material which makes the explanation more legalistic
- The internet is readily accessible for access to pornography
- People need more education and awareness about drinking
- 'Responsible drinking programs and the development of a 'social club' with strict patronage rules could solve some of the immediate issues - of underage drinkers congregating with adults at the 'drinking spots' - reduction in alcohol related assaults - reduction in potential sexual abuse issues resulting from underage / adult drinking with mixed gender in attendance'
- Licenses should be available for social clubs to encourage safe, mainstream drinking
- Allow safe (off the highway) drinking spots
- Build capacity within the community so that there are more choices such as jobs
- Reduce the impacts of isolation
- Formulation of an 'Intelligence Cell' of trusted local people who can report matters directly to police with an understanding that matters will be investigated
- Consult with people to understand what types of restricted material are the more popular; discuss options so that young kids are not confronted by unsuitable content; consider what medium is most commonly use (eg. video, magazines, internet)
Expanded night patrol services
- Not enough people working on night patrol
- No expansion of night patrol service since NTER
- Community can not discipline each other
- Night patrol not working properly yet
- Increase the number of night patrol workers
- Better coordination and support from service provider and community engagement
- The Night Patrol needs better support from the Shire to assist the workers in understanding their role and responsibilities
Expanded safe houses
- Safe House has not been built yet, or is not in operation
- Safe House was in operation prior to the NTER
- Improvement in levels of violence following restricted takeaway alcohol sales.
Additional child protection workers and Aboriginal family and community workers
- No child protection workers or Aboriginal family and community workers in community yet
- No increase in child protection workers or Aboriginal family and community workers
- Visits from workers not regular enough
- There needs to be more regular visits from workers in order to build a rapport with community: 'In 12 months, they have visited twice from Darwin to 'clean up' old matters of 2 years past. Even though new issues have been reported - the attending officers indicated that they were not briefed or they didn't have the time to spare on this visit'
- Introduction of more community workers, or having increased resources available in Tennant Creek on an outreach basis
Diversionary programs for young people
- Only a few youths in community were referred to program since NTER
- There have been no programs of substance
- Needs to be more redundancy built into the programs
Health checks and follow up treatment for children
- Slow take up of health checks
- No follow up treatment provided as yet
- Follow-up treatment too slow
- Parents are apprehensive about CHCs and are not bringing their children to the clinic
- Children need to travel for referrals
- Health checks occurred when many people were away
- Better communication through the GBM to the community
- Important to work more closely with the clinic
- Set up a regular weekly trips to access medical and dental services - this would be more cost-effective, efficient and reliable than the current process
Specialist support for children who have been abused
- Abused children are not being seen by specialist support
- The community is too far away from a major centre (680 km) for people to access the services
- Greater contact/information sharing within the community
Extra drug and alcohol rehabilitation and treatment services
- There are no treatment services available
- There are no additional services since NTER
- Community does not have a major drug and alcohol problem
- Drugs and alcohol continue to be prevalent
- Services are too far away to be of use
- More police based in community
- Introduce education programs through the schools and the clinic
Playgroups and crèches
- No change to number of playgroups
- The number of children attending the crèche varies quite regularly
- Parents do not work, but use playgroup as a 'get together'
- The crèche is staffed by CDEP workers who would all benefit from relevant training
- Better management and monitoring for children
- Parents need to engage in everyday programs
Extra teachers and classrooms and new boarding schools
- There are no extra teachers
- There are no extra boarding schools
- Additional teachers only recently provided
- The loss of two principals and changes to teachers which has resulted in a lack of continuity for students
- Lack of school attendance
- Integrated bus service
- Education Advocates (one male and one female) in each camp whose job it is to talk to parents and ensure that kids get to school
New early childhood and literacy
- No new programs
- New facilities are currently being planned for and are coming later this year
- Renewed focus on literacy and numeracy and broader support for capacity building - pathways from early age
- Too early to tell what affect IM will have
- Community has mostly managed their finances in the past
- Parents need to take responsibility for their children and these programs need to be funded by parents within the community
Licensing of community stores
- Community store was already operating well before the licensing
- Prices have gone up
- Store has not implemented recommendations from the licensing
- Store license still under review
- Tensions about store policy
- GBM is providing support to store management committee to overcome problems with store manager
- Store licensing is critical to the success of store management but communities need more information to understand the importance of the Government's role in this
- Allowing Outback Stores to fully manage the store and work with the community
- Observation by GBM may have been able to influence the licensing team
Creating real jobs
- There are no additional real jobs in the community
- Only a few real jobs created with little impact on community
- Community members have not taken the jobs that have been made
- The number of real jobs created out of CDEP positions has not been enough to make up for the loss of CDEP positions
- No economic infrastructure to develop real jobs
- Some people now earning less money than when their wages were subsidised by CDEP
- Some people made worse off because they are not now eligible for assisted employment because of their partners full time job status
- Difficulty with Aboriginal people moving from a culture of no work to a work culture
- Organisations not welcoming the shift because they need to now meet award wage
- Labour force does not have the required skills
- Community does not have workers who are willing to move to areas where there is a demand
- Enforced education
- Additional training for workers needed
- Need for mentoring programs
- Need for long term supervision on the job training for Aboriginal people
- In remote areas there is a need to create both a supply side and a demand side
Community Employment Brokers
- CEB has not produced any employment outcomes
- No work for the dole activities have commenced
- CEB was unsuitable for the role and left community
- CEB not in community now because of no accommodation
- No employment market/ job opportunities in community
- CEB not knowledgeable about opportunities/ the general community perception of CEBs is that they are ineffective and not worth approaching
- CEB in community was not very culturally sensitive
- There has to be a driver to make people want to work
- Indigenous business enterprise needs to be established
- Create an employment market by creating work opportunities would be a good thing
- A focus on education and training associated with opportunities to create work within the communities should be their main aim
- Reporting to the GBM could improve coordinated activities
- A focus on the development of micro-business opportunities would be worthwhile
Government Business ManagersThere is no accommodation for GBM on community which means visits are day trips. It is not possible to really influence the direction of the community unless able to live within it at least a couple of days each week
Working with locals to clean up communities
- The 'Clean Up Communities' did not eventuate
- Community was already clean prior to NTER
- Cleaning up the community is a constant source of frustration
- CCU was done through CDEP, and people aren't working now that they are on Centrelink
- Locals are unwilling to participate
- No locals used in CCU
- Program poorly delivered
- Initiated men have no interest in picking up garbage
- Greater support for community leaders to lead clean up of community
- Need to supply incentives and competitions for camps to clean up
- We need to give people activities which excite their interest in manly pursuits and to give women roles that support their nurturing and family instincts
- Some people also need a high ratio of mentors/supervisors to participants to give them a hand up
Fixing problems with the existing houses
- Rate of fixing houses in town camps has not changed
- Housing was already well maintained
- Housing is chronically overcrowded
- Problems reoccur quickly
- Maintenance budget too small to have an impact e.g. replacement of one door or a window absorbs 90% of that allowance for that house for that year
- No work conducted on housing in main community
- Providing a realistic approach to housing shortages
- Larger families require a different style of home e.g. 'long homes'
Building new homes and new arrangements for the management of public housing in communities outside the NTER context
- No new homes being built, which has caused resentment and anger across communities
- Lack of communication about the process has impeded success
- Territory Housing has been ineffective in communicating the meaning of the housing reforms to local people
- More information needs to be provided to the community and to GBMs to explain what the new tenancy management arrangements will be and what impact these will have on individuals and head tenants.
- Apply an acceptable standard for human habitation and apply it across the Northern Territory
- Consideration of the chronic over crowding of homes
GBMs were asked to rate their community's understanding of the aims and intention of the NTER, as well as their acceptance of it.
Figure 28: Community understanding of NTER
GBMs believe that a large majority of communities have a good or excellent understanding of both the aims of the NTER and why it was launched, as well as acceptance of the NTER. Similarly, GBMs perceive that the majority of communities have a good understanding of the main NTER measures:
Figure 29: Community awareness of NTER measures
GBMs report that in 34% of communities people have left as a result of the NTER measures.
What is the best way of communicating information about the NTER to community members?
Face to face is the preferred communication mode of GBMs. They describe a need to communicate at all levels with the community:
- At a macro level, through community meetings (both planned and impromptu). On the other hand a number of GBMs report that large scale meetings are ineffective.
- With key organisations, key community representatives and key personnel.
- With smaller groups, through more informal communication modes.
- Following up with individuals, allowing questions to be raised and answered -
Hold conversations, hold more conversations, hold even more conversations - help the community to identify what capacity it has to participate in the measures but also assist the community to address issues where there are broader community expectations that will have to be addressed and that they can get assistance to be involved in realising these expectations.
A number of GBMs describe their own role as the ideal mode through which communications about the NTER can be distributed to community members.
On the whole GBMs express a preference for more informal modes of communications (although formal meetings and consultations have their place). More creative modes of communications (like posters, leaflets and notice boards) are also effective.
Communications products noted to be particularly effective include:
- Brochures (specifically on money management, school attendance)
- In language radio broadcasts / advertising ("The only truly effective communication is in language and highly visual."
- Flip charts ("NTER - How it affects you")
- Aboriginal Resource and Development Services Inc. (ARDS) radio
- Posters (especially in relation to alcohol and pornography bans)
- Fact sheets
- Free to air TV
A number of GBMs noted specific barriers to effective communications:
- Limited radio and TV reception
- The value of written materials limited to community members with adequate literacy skills
- Particular language groups not represented
Many GBMs are unsure of the efficacy of communications products, as they had not had any specific feedback from community members.
Profile of communities represented in the sample
Survey data was collected for 71 communities, town camps and outstations in total:
- Ali Curung
- Alice Springs Town Camps
- Atitjere (Harts Range)
- Canteen Creek
- Elliott Town Camps
- Finke (Apatula)
- Haasts Bluff
- Imangara (Murray Downs)
- Jabiru Town Camps
- Kakadu Outstations
- Kalkarindji (Wave Hill)
- Kaltukatjara (Docker River)
- Manyallaluk (Eva Valley)
- Milikapiti • Milingimbi
- Milyakburra (Bickerton Island)
- Mt Liebig (Mount Liebig)
- Nauiyu (Daly River)
- Nturiya (Ti Tree)
- Pigeon Hole
- Pmara Jutunta (Ti Tree 6 Mile)
- Santa Teresa
- Wallace Rockhole
- Wutunugurra (Epenarra)
Glossary of acronyms
- ARDS - Aboriginal Resource and Development Services Inc.
- CCU - Community Clean Up
- CDC - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commercial Development Corporation
- CDEP - Community Development Employment Projects
- CEB - Community Employment Broker
- CHC - Child Health Checks
- CLC - Central Land Council
- FaHCSIA - Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs
- FHBH - Fixing Houses for Better Health
- GBMs - Government Business Managers
- IBA - Indigenous Business Australia
- ICC - Indigenous Coordination Centres
- JET crèches - Jobs, Education and Training
- NAHS - National Aboriginal Housing Strategy
- NAHS - Ngangganawili Aboriginal Health Service
- NIIS - National Indigenous Information System
- NTER - Northern Territory Emergency Response
- OIPC - Office of Indigenous Policy Coordination Group
- TO - Traditional Owner
The GBM survey
A. Welcome Page and Survey Introduction
Thanks for participating in this survey. TNS Social Research is an independent research company and is conducting this study on behalf of FaHCSIA.
You will be asked a number of questions relating to the <INSERT> community. (If you manage more than one community, complete a separate survey for each). The survey is divided into ten sections, with some questions about yourself included at the end for demographic purposes only.
Please be completely honest in your answers so that the information we collect is accurate. This isn't a test and there are no right or wrong answers: it's your opinions that count. We want you to answer based on your experience and perceptions since arriving in the community - you are not required to access additional information to complete this survey.
The survey will take approximately 30-40 minutes depending on your answers. Your opinions are valued and appreciated, and the information you provide will be treated confidentially. Using the survey, an analysis will be done. Communities will not be individually identifiable in the report but de-identified anecdotes may be used to illustrate findings, and so your responses need to be professional and respectful.
The final analysis will be provided to GBMs. We hope that you enjoy taking this survey. Thanks again for your help.
B. Food availability
B1: Which of the following types of food outlets or stores are present / available within your community? Tick all that apply.
1. Licensed community store
2. Unlicensed community store
3. Bush orders
4. Other (Please specify)_______________
8. None of these
9. Don't Know
B2: Which one type of food outlet or store is used most often by people within your community?
1. Licensed community store
2. Unlicensed community store
3. Bush orders
4. Supermarket in regional / metropolitan centre
6. Other (Please specify)_______________
9. Don't Know
IF NO CODE 1 AT B1 ASK B 3/ 4/ 5
B3. Where is the nearest licensed store? Please write in the community name.
B4. How many kilometres away is that store? (Specify)_____________
B5. How do people usually get to that store?
3. Bush bus
6. Other (Specify) _______
IF CODE 3 AT B1 ASK B6 B6.
How often does the Bush Orders deliver food?
1. More than once a week
5. Less often
9. Don't Know
ASK B7 ONLY FOR THE STORE TYPE MOST OFTEN USED AT B2
B7. On average how often are the following available from <INSERT>?
|Always||Several days a week||At least one day a week||At least one day a fortnight||At least one day a month||Less often then once a month||DK|
|a. Fresh Fruit||1||2||3||4||5||6||9|
|b. Fresh Vegetables||1||2||3||4||5||6||9|
|C. Frozen Vegetables||1||2||3||4||5||6||9|
|d. Fresh / frozen poultry||1||2||3||4||5||6||9|
|e. Fresh / frozen meat||1||2||3||4||5||6||9|
|f. baby foods / formula / baby supplies||1||2||3||4||5||6||9|
|g. Over the counter medication||1||2||3||4||5||6||9|
B8. For each of the following attributes please indicate whether you believe them to have increased, stayed the same, decreased or fluctuated. Please answer based on what you've seen in the community since you arrived. If you are not sure about a statement, answer "Don't Know".
|Increased||Stayed the same||Decreased||Fluctuated||Don't Know|
|a. The price of fresh fruit and/or vegetables||1||2||3||4||9|
|b. The quality of fresh fruit and/or vegetables||1||2||3||4||9|
|c. The availability of fresh fruit and/or vegetables||1||2||3||4||9|
|d. The price of baby foods / formula / baby supplies||1||2||3||4||9|
|e. The availability of baby foods / formula / baby supplies||1||2||3||4||9|
IF B8a IS A 1,3, OR 4 ASK B9
IF B8b IS A 1,3, OR 4 ASK
B10 IF B8c IS A 1,3, OR 4 ASK B11
B9. What do you think has caused the price of fresh fruit and vegetables to change? VERBATIM
B10. What do you think has caused the quality of fresh fruit and vegetables to change? VERBATIM
B11. What do you think has caused the availability of fresh fruit and vegetables to change? VERBATIM
B12. Please tell us which of the following statements you agree or disagree with. Answer based on what you've seen in the community since you arrived. If you are not sure about a statement, answer "Don't Know".
|a. There has been a change in where community members are buying their food||1||2||9|
|b. Fresh fruit and/or vegetables are generally affordable compared with other types of food. ("Generally affordable" means that for most of the time, people can afford to buy fresh fruit / vegetables, and are not forced to buy other types of food because of cost)||1||2||9|
IF B12a IS A 1, OR 2 ASK B13
B13. What do you think has caused the change in where community members buy their food? VERBATIM
B14. Why have community members changed where they shop
|a. previous shop not licensed||1||2||9|
|b. can't pool/afford transport costs||1||2||9|
|c. affordability of food||1||2||9|
|d. combination of reasons||1||2||9|
|e. other reason (please specify)______________________________________||1||2||9|
B15. Do children in the community usually have enough food to eat each day? Why do you think that? VERBATIM
C1. For each of the following education factors please indicate whether you believe they have increased, stayed the same, decreased or fluctuated. Please answer based on what you've seen in the community since you arrived. If you are not sure about a statement, answer "Don't Know".
|Increased||Stayed the same||Decreased||Fluctuated||Don't Know|
|a. Children's school attendance||1||2||3||4||9|
|b. Children truanting||1||2||3||4||9|
|c. Parental support for children's attendance at school||1||2||3||4||9|
|d. Parent engagement / involvement with the school||1||2||3||4||9|
IF C1a IS A 1, 3 OR 4 ASK C2
IF C1b IS A 1, 3 OR 4 ASK C3
IF C1c IS A 1, 3 OR 4 ASK C4
IF C1d IS A 1, 3 OR 4 ASK C5
C2. What do you think has caused the change in children's school attendance since you arrived in the community? VERBATIM
C3. What do you think has caused the change in children's truanting since you arrived in the community? VERBATIM
C4. What do you think has caused the level of parental support for children's school attendance to change since you arrived in the community? VERBATIM
C5. What do you think has caused the level of parental engagement / involvement with the school to change since you arrived in the community? VERBATIM
C6. Does the community have a school nutrition program?
9. Don't Know
IF YES (1) at C6 ASK C7
C7. Do parents assist with the school nutrition program?
9. Don't Know
C8. Thinking about truancy, are you aware of the following? (Pick all that apply) MULTIPLE RESONSE
1. Children truanting mid morning (i.e. arriving at the start of the day but leaving before lunchtime)
2. Children truanting mid afternoon (i.e. arriving at the start of the day but leaving after lunchtime)
3. Children not going to school at all
9. Don't Know
D. Supporting families
D1. Which of the following parenting programs and child care facilities are available in your community?
|c. Child development||1||2|
|e. Outside School Hours Care||1||2|
|f. Long Day Care||1||2|
|g. JET crèche||1||2|
|h. Mobile service||1||2|
ASK D2 for all services available at D1
D2. Have you seen an increase, decrease or no change in the use of these services available in your community since you arrived?
|c. Child development||1||2||3||9|
|e. Outside School Hours Care||1||2||3||9|
|f. Long Day Care||1||2||3||9|
|g. JET crèche||1||2||3||9|
|h. Mobile service||1||2||3||9|
ASK D3 if D1(g) is a 1
D3. Are you aware of an upgrade to the JET crèche occurring since your arrival?
E. Law and order
E1. Since arriving in the community are you aware of an increase, decrease or no change in the following?
Factor not present
in the community
|c. petrol sniffing||1||2||3||8||9|
|d. illicit drug use (other than marijuana)||1||2||3||8||9|
|e. marijuana use||1||2||3||8||9|
IF E1a A CODE 1 OR 2 ASK E2
E2. In your opinion, why has the level of violence changed? VERBATIM
IF E1b A CODE 1 OR 2 ASK E3
E3. In your opinion, why has the level of alcohol abuse changed? VERBATIM
IF E1c A CODE 1 OR 2 ASK E4
E4. In your opinion, why has the level of petrol sniffing changed? VERBATIM
IF E1d A CODE 1 OR 2 ASK E5
E5. In your opinion, why has the level of illicit drug usage (other than marijuana) changed? VERBATIM
IF E1e A CODE 1 OR 2 ASK E6
E6. In your opinion, why has the level of marijuana usage changed? VERBATIM
IF E1f A CODE 1 OR 2 ASK E7
E7. In your opinion, why has the level of solvent usage changed? VERBATIM
E8. Are community members drinking near the community but outside of prescribed areas?
9. Don't Know
IF YES AT E8 (CODE 1) ASK E9
E9. Has the incidence of community members drinking near the community but outside of prescribed areas increased, decreased or remained the same?
3. Remained the same
9. Don't Know
ASK E10 if E9(1/2)
E10. What has caused this change? VERBATIM
E11. Are community members using illicit substances other than alcohol near the community but outside of prescribed areas?
9. Don't Know
E12. Is there a night patrol in your community?
1. Yes - established prior to my arrival
2. Yes - established after my arrival
9. Don't Know
IF E12 IS A CODE 1 OR 2 ASK E13 and E14
E13. How often does the night patrol operate?
1. 7 nights a week
2. Weeknights only
3. Weekends only
4. Part of the week only (Specify how many nights on average) ______
9. Don't Know
E14. Is the night patrol service adequate for the community's needs? Why do you say that? VERBATIM
E15. In your opinion, what impact have the following factors (where present) had in reducing criminal activity in the community?
Factor not present
|a. Police presence||1||2||8||9|
|b. Elders law||1||2||8||9|
|c. Circuit courts||1||2||8||9|
|d. Youth diversion||1||2||8||9|
|e. Alcohol restrictions||1||2||8||9|
|f. Income management||1||2||8||9|
|h. Night patrol||1||2||8||9|
|i. Safe house||1||2||8||9|
|j. Respite / rehab||1||2||8||9|
|k. Aboriginal Family and Community Workers||1||2||8||9|
|l. Mobile Child Protection Teams||1||2||8||9|
ASK E16 if E15d is a 1 or 2
E16. Have you seen an increase in youth diversion activities?
9. Don't Know
ASK E17 if E15i is a 1 or 2
E17. Is the safe house adequate for the community's needs? Why do you say that? VERBATIM
F. Housing and land
F1. Since arriving in the community, has there been a reaction within the community to information about changes to the management of community housing?
1. Yes - positive reaction
2. Yes - negative reaction
3. No reaction
4. No changes occurred / flagged to occur
F2. Are you aware of any alternative community housing management arrangements which are preferred by the community? What are they? VERBATIM
F3. Since arriving in the community, are you aware of an increase, decrease or no change in the following?
|a. Availability of community housing||1||2||8||9|
|b. Maintenance of community housing||1||2||8||9|
|c. Availability of visitor accommodation||1||2||8||9|
|d. Maintenance of visitor accommodation||1||2||8||9|
|e. Community cleanup activities||1||2||8||9|
|f. Prevalence of white goods (such as fridges, freezers, washing||1||2||8||9|
|g. Prevalence of cooking facilities (stoves, cookers, electric fry pans, microwaves etc)||1||2||8||9|
ASK F4 if F3c = 1
F4. What new kinds of visitor accommodation are now available? VERBATIM
ASK F5 / F6 if F3b = 1
F5. What types of maintenance of community housing are now occurring? VERBATIM
F6. Are community members involved in the maintenance of community housing?
1. Yes - before my arrival
2. Yes - after my arrival
9. Don't Know
ASK F7 if F6 IS A CODE 1/2 YES
F7. What kind of involvement do they have in housing repair? VERBATIM
(F8 is deleted)
ASK F9 IF F3e (1/2/8)
F9. Are community members involved in community cleanup activities?
9. Don't Know
ASK F10 if F9 IF YES (CODE 1)
F10. What kind of involvement do they have in community cleanup activities? VERBATIM
G. Welfare reform and engagement measures
G1. Since arriving in the community have you seen an increase, decrease or no change in the following?
|a. Employment opportunities||1||2||3||8||9|
|b. Provision of training opportunities||1||2||3||8||9|
|c. Interest in training opportunities||1||2||3||8||9|
|d. Interest in Work for the Dole||1||2||3||8||9|
|e. Interest in establishing a small business in the community||1||2||3||8||9|
G2. How (if at all) has the community been affected by the removal of remote area exemptions? VERBATIM
G3. How (if at all) have local businesses and services been affected by the abolition of CDEP? VERBATIM
G4. Has income management been implemented in the community?
1. Yes - before my arrival
2. Yes - after my arrival
ASK G5 if G4 (1 or 2)
G5. In your opinion what is the community's attitude towards income management?
1. Majority have a positive attitude
2. Mixed attitude
3. Majority have a negative attitude
9. Don't Know
ASK G6 if G5 = 1 or 2
G6. Are there any particular groups of people within the community who have a positive attitude towards income management? Why do you think they have a positive attitude? VERBATIM
ASK G7 if G4 (1 or 2)
G7. In your opinion, how has income management impacted on the community? VERBATIM
Humbugging - refers to the practice of harassing others for money. This should not be confused with legitimate social obligations between kinsfolk for exchange of goods/services in traditionally-oriented communities.
G8 Are you aware of an increase or decrease in "humbugging" in the community?
3. No change
9. Don't Know
H. Whole of Government approach
H1. In your opinion, what is the burden placed on community members by visits by government officials or agencies to the community?
1. Heavy burden
2. Moderate burden
3. Mild burden
7. No burden
9. Don't Know
IF H1 CODE 1 OR 2 ASK H2
H2. How could this burden be reduced? VERBATIM
H3. Do you think the majority of community members understand your role?
1. Majority has a good understanding
2. Majority has some understanding
3. Majority has a limited understanding
4. Majority has no understanding
9. Don't Know
H4. Do you think other government agencies understand your role?
1. Majority has a good understanding
2. Majority has some understanding
3. Majority has a limited understanding
4. Majority has no understanding
9. Don't Know
H5. Have you used any of the following interpreter services since arriving in the community?
1. Aboriginal interpreter service
2. Local interpreter
3. Language centre
6. Other (Specify)__________
9. None - haven't used interpreter services
IF H5 A CODE 1, 2, 3 OR 6 ASK H6
H6. How often do you use interpreter services?
1. Most of the time
2. Some of the time
9. Don't Know
H7. Thinking about the whole of government coordination of services in your community, what is working? What is not working? VERBATIM
H8. Using the scale below, please indicate how involved the community is in its own management.
1. Highly involved
7. Not involved at all
IF H8=1/7 ASK H9
H9. Why do you rate engagement that way? VERBATIM
I. The NTER approach
I1. Thinking about the NTER measures that have been introduced into the community since the NTER commenced, which ones do you perceive are having a positive impact and which ones are having a negative impact?
Not introduced to / implemented in this community
|Providing more police in remote communities||1||2||3||4||9|
|Bans on alcohol and pornography in prescribed areas||1||2||3||4||9|
|Expanded night patrol services||1||2||3||4||9|
|New and expanded safe houses for families experiencing violence||1||2||3||4||9|
|Additional child-protection workers and Aboriginal family and community workers||1||2||3||4||9|
|Diversionary programs for young people||1||2||3||4||9|
|Health checks and follow-up treatment for children||1||2||3||4||9|
|Specialist support for children who have been abused||1||2||3||4||9|
|Extra drug and alcohol rehabilitation and treatment services||1||2||3||4||9|
|More playgroups and crèches||1||2||3||4||9|
|Extra teachers and classrooms and new boarding schools||1||2||3||4||9|
|New early childhood and literacy programs||1||2||3||4||9|
|Income management of half of people's welfare payment to ensure children's essential needs are met||1||2||3||4||9|
|Licensing of community stores||1||2||3||4||9|
|Creating real jobs in communities||1||2||3||4||9|
|Community Employment Brokers in remote communities||1||2||3||4||9|
|Government Business Managers to work with communities||1||2||3||4||9|
|Working with locals to clean up communities||1||2||3||4||9|
|Fixing problems with existing houses||1||2||3||4||9|
|Building new homes and new arrangements for the management of public housing in communities (outside the NTER context)||1||2||3||4||9|
ASK I2 for each measure perceived as having no impact or a negative impact
I2. Why is <INSERT MEASURE> having no impact or a negative impact? How could the impact of <INSERT MEASURE> be improved? VERBATIM
I3. Using the rating scale of excellent, good or poor how do you rate the community's...
|Understanding of the aims of the NTER||1||2||3||9|
|Understanding of why the NTER was launched||1||2||3||9|
|Acceptance of the NTER||1||2||3||9|
I4. And how do you rate the community's awareness of each of the following NTER measures?
|Community safety (police, night patrols)||1||2||3||9|
|Child health checks and follow up||1||2||3||9|
|Community clean ups||1||2||3||9|
I5. Has anyone moved out of the community as a result of the NTER measures? What caused them to move out? VERBATIM
I6. In your experience, what is the best way of communicating information about the NTER to community members? VERBATIM
I7. Have any communications products (including in-language radio advertising) produced by government agencies or the Operations Centre been particularly effective? VERBATIM
I8. What information products would you like to have available to you, either for your use or use by community members? VERBATIM
J. Other issues, Demographics and Close
J1. Finally, do you have any other comments you'd like to make in relation to the survey? VERBATIM
J2. When did you first start in the community?