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    Minister for Housing and Public Works, Minister for Digital Technology and Minister for Sport
    The Honourable Mick de Brenni

    Yarning Circles to be held in NQ on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander housing

    Minister for Housing and Public Works, Minister for Digital Technology and Minister for Sport
    The Honourable Mick de Brenni

    Tuesday, November 13, 2018

    Yarning Circles to be held in NQ on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander housing

    The Palaszczuk Government wants to hear from people living in Townsville and Palm Island this week about what needs to be done to improve housing for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders.

    Minister for Housing and Public Works Mick de Brenni said Yarning Circles (consultation forums) would be held to give residents and key stakeholders the opportunity to help shape the Government’s new Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Housing Action Plan.

    Mr de Brenni said the Townsville Yarning Circle would be held on Tuesday, 13 November at Rydges Townsville, 23 Palmer Street from 10am to 2pm and the Palm Island Yarning Circle will be held on Wednesday, 14 November at Bwgcolman School, Creek Road from 10.30am to 1.30pm.   

    Member for Townsville Scott Stewart said the Yarning Circles would form a critical part of the process in developing the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Housing Action Plan.

    “The Yarning Circles in Townsville and Palm Island will play an important part in the targeted consultation process the government is conducting around Queensland to find out what we need to do to improve Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander housing,” Mr Stewart said.

    Member for Mundingburra Coralee O’Rourke said the open conversations with local residents and key stakeholders will help shape our plan which is one of the key actions identified in our Queensland Housing Strategy 2017 – 2027.

    “The plan recognises the unique and diverse housing challenges faced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders, which includes overcrowding and homelessness, and will come up with practical solutions,” Ms O’Rourke said

    Member for Thuringowa Aaron Harper said the Yarning Circles would be facilitated by First Nations Housing Advisor Mick Gooda.

    “Yarning Circles are a great way to get feedback from the community as they provide a forum in which everybody can get their voice heard in a safe and respectful environment,” Mr Harper said.

    Deputy Premier, Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships and Ministerial Champion for Palm Island, Jackie Trad said the government’s new First Nations Housing Advisor Mick Gooda will be facilitating the events encouraging everyone to participate in discussion.

    “We want to provide opportunities to challenge current thinking and develop solutions that truly represent the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders,” said Ms Trad.

    Minister for Housing and Public Works Mick de Brenni said the Palaszczuk Government knew that to “ensure the best outcomes for remote communities we need to work with them, not simply do things to them”.

    “This is especially important as we are approaching a crisis in remote housing brought on by the Federal LNP’s disgraceful decision to axe funding for building new housing in Queensland’s remote indigenous communities,” he said.

    “Providing suitable housing makes all the difference in improving life chances. You can’t start closing the gap on employment, health and education without a roof over your head – it’s as simple as that.

    “The Palaszczuk Government is determined to address these challenges and that’s why we recently announced an additional $40 million, bringing our direct investment to $185 million this year to support a housing construction program in 2019 to help mitigate the worst impacts of the Commonwealth’s decision to cut funding.

    “We continue to stand ready to accept any assistance in Closing the Gap from the Commonwealth should the Prime Minister overturn Malcolm Turnbull’s decision to turn his back on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.”

    The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Action Plan will be launched next year.

    Among those consulted will be Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders, Traditional Owners, private and social housing tenants, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mayors and Councils, Indigenous organisations, service providers and Government agencies.

    To find out more go to www.qld.gov.au/betterhousingfutures

    MEDIA 0466 834 330