The Rudd Government has set ambitious targets for closing the gap on Indigenous
disadvantage with respect to life expectancy, child mortality, access to early childhood education, educational attainment and employment outcomes and stated that this will be done in a new partnership with our Indigenous people.
Since coming to power the new Government has committed $1.2 billion in new and
redirected funding to Indigenous initiatives, including $718.7 million / 5 years in the 2008-09 Budget. The majority of the funding allocated in the Budget ($426.6 million / 5 years) is provided for activities in the Northern Territory (NT), including $320.9 million in 2008-09 for activities that are part of the Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER).
But ‘closing the gap’ will require a focus well beyond the NT and substantial new long-term resources for a range of national programs.