Monday, 28 May 2007

In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man has better health cover.

It is now forty years since Australians (at least, those eligible to vote at the time) registered a greater than 90% yes vote to start considering those blackfellas who were here first as human (I thought the inter-breeding would have resolved that one), under the same federal laws as the rest of us, and included in the census. Which, overnight, did something quite major to our population figures.

Since that time... Well, let's say we're still working on it. And I am not, repeat not going to get into arguments about what, how, who, what responsibility the indigenous community holds, etc. I'm just not going to do it.

But I will say this: Something hasn't worked in the area of health care. My favourite eye-opening moment occurred many years ago, when I found out that Community Aid Abroad ran programs in Australia. As in: the same programs they were running in those very photogenic starvation-riddled communities in Africa. Here. In Australia. Where they get money off Australians to run programs in Africa. And, it turned out, over the fence that way about 1,000km.

And every time you turn around, there's another life-expectancy statistic that shows a worse disparity than there is 'twixt black and white in the USA.

Or this. Not only is CAA working in Australia, but the Fred Hollows Foundation has to as well.

I don't care why, I don't care how to fix it, I just wish to say: Not bloody good enough.

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