Indigenous Affairs

CIS has been active in advocating for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders  to receive the same standards of education and health services that other Australians take for granted.
Poor education is a major factor behind high unemployment and welfare dependency, with many Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders living in appalling community housing and suffering from some of the highest rates of infectious diseases in the world. Work is needed to implement private property rights on communal title land and to address the high rates of alcohol and substance abuse rife in Indigenous communities.


The Kinship Conundrum: The Impact of Aboriginal Self-Determination on Indigenous Child Protection
Jeremy Sammut
08 December 2014 | PM144

This report argues that mainstreaming revolution in Indigenous policy should be extended to Indigenous child protection policy, and that Aboriginal exceptionalism—typified by the operation of Aboriginal Child Placement Principle (ACPP)—must cease. To help ‘Close the Gap’ in social outcomes between Indigenous and other Australians, Indigenous…

Helen Hughes: A Tribute
Glenys Byrne, Greg Lindsay, Noel Pearson, Ron Duncan, Tony Abbott
27 August 2014 | PF26

CIS Senior Fellow Professor Helen Hughes AO passed away on 15 June 2013 after a lifetime dedicated to working passionately and always fiercely on behalf of the poor and the powerless. Helen was a distinguished economist with a particular focus on development economics and improving…

The Right to the Good Life: Improving Educational Outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children
Marcia Langton
01 October 2013 | OP133

Education is a key ideological battleground in debates about how to address Indigenous disadvantage. Yet, as the recent report to Parliament on the progress with the ‘Close the Gap’ targets shows, much of what we are doing is not working. When it comes to Indigenous…

Panacea to Prison? Justice Reinvestment in Indigenous Communities
Sara Hudson
31 January 2013 | PM134

High Indigenous incarceration rates have elicited a long list of so-called solutions over the years. Since the 1991 Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody (RCIADIC), countless reports and programs have aimed to reduce the Indigenous incarceration rate. Yet the percentage of Aboriginal people in…

Sustainability of Indigenous Communities
Ron Staples, Sara Hudson, Wesley Aird
20 December 2012 | OP127

Social indicators of Indigenous disadvantage prove that the orthodox methods of delivering services to Indigenous people have not worked. The failure of these methods is also indicated by the proliferation of approaches trying to work around established orthodoxies. This paper sets out an alternative process,…

Media & Commentary

18C makes us all tongue-tied
Jeremy Sammut
20 January 2015 | The Australian

The Charlie Hebdo massacre has renewed calls for the federal parliament to amend Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act (RDA). According to Race Discrimination Commissioner, Tim Soutphommasane, this is…

Kinship placements risk creating a Lost Generation
Jeremy Sammut
12 December 2014

For six years, the CIS's child protection research has comprehensively explored the major issues facing the child protection system across Australia, and has called for the greater use of adoption…

Indigenous Nation Building: The Army Aboriginal Community Assistance Program
Sergei DeSilva-Ranasinghe, Steve Gliddon
11 December 2014 | Policy

Serge DeSilva-Ranasinghe interviews Colonel Steve Gliddon about the Army Aboriginal Community Assistance Program. Read full article

Researcher denies report claims Indigenous children are placed ‘willy-nilly’ when taken into care.
Jeremy Sammut
10 December 2014

Dr Jeremy Sammut has rejected suggestions made in today’s media that his latest research claims Indigenous children are placed ‘willy-nilly’ to comply with Aboriginal Child Placement Principle (ACPP). Dr Sammut’s…

We risk an Indigenous lost generation
Jeremy Sammut
08 December 2014 | The Australian

The number of Indigenous children removed from their parents has risen from 4,146 children in 2000-01 to almost 14,000 children in 2012-13. The proportion of the Indigenous child population in…