#StandUp2017 Opening Night Forum on the NT Intervention.

23 Jun

23 June 2017

The first night of StandUp2017 was opened with a Healing Smoking from Akeyulerre Healing Centre. Followed by dinner and panelist talks from Barb Shaw, Elaine Peckham, Vincent Forrester, Frank Curtis, Rev Dr Djinyini Gondarra. Talking first hand of the impacts of the NT Intervention. The absolute horror pain and suffering people faced.

We are live streaming the talks from our Facebook. click here to go to our facebook.

Frank Curtis
who was a policeman when the Intervention came in 10 years ago –

“I used to be an APO, 26 years with the NT police. When it first came out in 2007, they got me to go in and search peoples houses. I said no. They wanted me to use the new Intervention laws to check the houses for alcohol. I said, ‘sorry family, it’s my job to search your houses’, even people who didn’t drink. I knew who drinks and who doesn’t, but it doesn’t matter who. I had to apologise to family. I felt ashamed and hurt, as a black policeman going through people’s houses/ I felt I had no right to go in there. It made me feel shame, wearing a policemans uniform. I said to a policeman, ‘How would you feel if I went through your house, looking through the cupboards, under the beds’. I said it to the Sargent – ‘how would you feel?'”

Vincent Forrester:

“I remember coming into Alice Springs to get my groceries and head back to Uluru. I sat down and had a cup of tea. I’ve got little lap dogs. My little dogs were going crazy. I walked outside, there were 9 coppers, all had a shot gun. They all had their finger on the trigger. In a squeaky voice I said, ‘don’t breathe boys’. Janine came up, she was a white girl.
They were going to blow me away.
They said all the men are alcoholics, we all bash our wives, we all pedophiles, none of us work. THey set us up with the Lateline program. A man in a black hat saying he was a youth worker in Mutitjulu. They put pictures of people petrol sniffing, but it wasn’t Mutitjulu.”

Rev. Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra:

“I challenged them. And we continue to live with the measures that they have created. All the measures. It’s the same as what happened in 50s or 30s, so called welfare time. We can’t wait another 10 years. Something must be done now. The leaders of today, we have to push very hard to stop them. They are creating another format of the Basics Card. Are we always going to be a puppet of a string for them? We were a nation once. It’s not to do with civilisations, industrialisation, modernisation, it was to do with people living here with law and order. This country was taken without negotiation. No treaty, nothing at all. We are still a sovereign nation, brothers and sisters. We have to fight for that sovereignty!”

Elaine Peckham:

“We all worked jobs, paid our rent, even on our own land, paid all our bills, still we had to be under the Intervention and were given the BasicsCard. I went around to my son’s place one day and he said, ‘you better go down to Centrelink, things have changed, you need to go down’. I was shocked, I couldn’t believe what was happening. The first day I went into Centrelink, I went around me and saw all these men and women in suits with briefcases. And our people standing in big lines, waiting to be told they were going to be put on the BasicsCard and have changes to the pension. I can vividly remember all that.

I sat down and had my interview. It was such a shock. They had computers set up, to play messages in language. It was all in front of us, before I eyes. I said, ‘I can speak English very well’, it was just to discriminatory. I asked for a manager after I had my interview. I was not allowed that, they said they were too busy. They led me out to this young Aboriginal woman. She said, ‘I heard you aren’t happy with your interview’. I said, ‘No, I don’t like the way we are being treated and spoken to. Look around you in this room, anyone here today could be your family, your aunty or uncle’.”

Barbara Shaw:

“A lot of money has been spent trying to ‘save us’… I was in my living room that night. My daugher was 2 years old. She’s a lot taller than me now. She lives it, we all still live it. With compulsory land acquisition, the government still has control of communities. That was the way the Shire came in as well, that was another way to control us as well.”

One Response to “#StandUp2017 Opening Night Forum on the NT Intervention.”


  1. #StandUp2017 Opening Night Forum on the NT Intervention. — Rollback the Intervention | girlsradiooffensive - June 26, 2017

    […] via #StandUp2017 Opening Night Forum on the NT Intervention. — Rollback the Intervention […]

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