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Rally: Say NO to Government's Income Management

Date and Time: 
Saturday, October 8, 2011 - 10:30pm to Sunday, October 9, 2011 - 12:00am

Say NO to Government's Income Management
Not in Bankstown, not in the NT, not ANYWHERE!
Support the call for a moratorium
Stop the NT Intervention

Meet 11.30am, Paul Keating Park, Bankstown (cnr Chapel rd and The Mall).
Speakers include: Barbara Shaw, Aboriginal leader from Alice Springs who has been on Income Management four years and Senator Lee Rhiannon.

The Federal Government is trying to introduce Income Management into Bankstown in 2012, along with four other 'trial sites' across Australia, including Shellharbour and Wyong in NSW. This policy quarantines half of Centrelink income onto a BasicsCard which can only be used to buy "priority items" at government-approved stores.

Income Management will be compulsorily applied to people in the trial sites that Centrelink considers "vulnerable to financial crisis" and
those referred by child protection.

Income Management was first rolled out as part of the racist Intervention in the Northern Territory in 2007. Aboriginal communities have experienced four years of hardship and shame.

A recent report by the Equality Rights Alliance surveyed 180 women on Income Management in the NT. It found that 79% wanted to exit the system, 85% had not changed what they buy and 74% felt discriminated against. A report released by the Australian Indigenous Doctors Association (AIDA) concludes that compulsory income management in the NT has long-term, profoundly negative impacts on psychological health, social health and wellbeing and cultural integrity (March 2010).

The campaign has initiated a call for a national moratorium on Income Management - demanding immediate amnesty for those already on the system and a halt to plans for expansion. Income Management costs more than $4500 per person per year. This money is badly needed for jobs and social services. A strong new coalition 'Say No to Government's Income Management Not in Bankstown Not Anywhere' has formed in Bankstown. Its founding statement has been endorsed by more than 50 organisations including unions, church and community groups.

Margaret Goneis, Chairperson of Bankstown City Council Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee said that she is angered by the proposed changes and the effect it will have on individuals already struggling financially: "People need improved access to transport, health services, mental health care and assistance with the high cost of medications - income management will not address these needs."

Come along to this rally + hear from Barbara Shaw, a strong Aboriginal leader who has lived on the BasicsCard for four years, along with spokespeople from the local community. Demand an end to the NT Intervention and Government Income Management!

For more information contact Adam: 0414 728 815

www.stoptheintervention.org