9 December 2019
On 25 November, the Victorian Government Aboriginal Affairs Report 2019 which highlights how Victoria is working towards achieving the vision of the Victorian Aboriginal Affairs Framework 2018-2023 (VAAF) was launched.
The framework's vision is ‘that all Aboriginal Victorian people, families and communities are safe, resilient, thriving and living culturally rich lives’.
VACCA CEO Muriel Bamblett AO said “While the report provides a valuable status update across a number of social and economic indicators, it pays too little attention to the drivers of success and lacks analysis of what government is investing relative to the needs of Aboriginal people in Victoria.”
“Stronger commitments to combat institutional racism combined with investment in cultural strengthening will see rapid improvement across all indicators.”
“We know that self-determination works, and VACCA will continue to advocate for the investment and systemic reforms that will ensure Aboriginal people in Victoria thrive at every stage of life.”
The report found that Aboriginal children remain significantly over-represented in care at more than 20 times the rate of non-Aboriginal children, reflecting an overwhelming and devastating increase since 2007-08.
A positive reform has been ensuring Aboriginal children and young people are connected to culture with an increase in the number of Aboriginal Children in Aboriginal Care (ACAC).
The number of children in care being case managed by an Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisation (ACCO) has increased almost four times over the past three years to roughly 33 per cent.
Unacceptably, less than 20 per cent of Aboriginal children and young people in care have cultural support plans despite it being a legislative requirement.
Connection to culture is essential for Aboriginal children and families to heal and thrive in their community and it is crucial for ACCOs and the Victorian Government to continue working towards all Aboriginal children and young people in care having cultural support plans.
The Report also highlighted the substantial rise in the number of Aboriginal children and families engaging in early childhood education. Since 2008, Kindergarten enrolment increased from 62 per cent to 100 per cent, surpassing enrolment rates of all Victorian Children.
You can read the full report here.
For all media queries, please contact VACCA Communications Manager Vanessa Morris on firstname.lastname@example.org