This year, Australia’s National Reconciliation Week theme is ‘Grounded in Truth: Walk Together with Courage’. But just how important is truth-telling when it comes to discussions of Indigenous affairs? Will Ken Wyatt’s appointment as the first Indigenous minister for Indigenous Affairs bring the change that Australia needs?

On this episode, we hear from Tony Dreise on the ups-and-downs of Indigenous policies past and present, and get his suggestions for policies for the future. We also consider government spending and whether it’s been proportionate to the levels of disadvantage felt across the Indigenous community.

Tony Dreise is Professor of Indigenous Policy Research and Director of the Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research (CAEPR) at the Australian National University. He is nationally and internationally recognised as a First Nations leader in policy, evaluation, and research in the field of education.

Our presenters – Sharon Bessell and Martyn Pearce – also chat about New Zealand’s recent wellbeing budget and how to measure societal success. What’s more, they also reveal a new way for our listeners to win Policy Forum’s highly coveted mugs – so listen up!

Sharon Bessell is Director of the Children’s Policy Centre at Crawford School, the ANU lead on the Individual Deprivation Measure Project, and Editor of Policy Forum’s Poverty: In Focus section.

Martyn Pearce is a presenter for Policy Forum Pod and the Editor of Policy Forum.

Show notes | The following were mentioned in this podcast:

New Zealand’s wellbeing budget

Gross Happiness National Index

Child poverty in New Zealand

Social Inclusion Index

Reconciliation Week in Australia

Indigenous communities and wellbeing

The Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation

Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research (ANU)

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Commission (ATSIC)

Native Title Act

Recognition of Aboriginal rights in the form of native titles

Kevin Rudd’s national apology (2008)

Uluru Statement from the Heart

Paul Keating’s Redfern Park speech

The Whispering in Our Hearts – Henry Reynolds

Morrison Government’s budget allocation

Ken Wyatt’s appointment as the first Indigenous Minister for Indigenous Affairs

Justice reinvestment in Bourke

Closing The Gap reports

Australia’s ‘suicide prevention plan’ is barely worth the name – Gerry Georgatos

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