First remote LDM Agreement to strengthen community development in Central Australia

NT Government

The first remote Local Decision Making Agreement in Central Australia, highlights the Territory Labor Government’s continued support of remote communities in the Ngurratjuta Region west of Alice Springs.

Cultural leaders from a cluster of communities and homelands across the Ngurratjuta Region have today signed a Local Decision Making (LDM) Agreement, with Stage 1 focused on pathways for the community led development and economic boost for Papunya, Haasts Bluff and Mt Liebig and surrounding homelands.

Stage 2 of the LDM will expand further across the Region later this year and will include Areyonga, Wallace Rockhole, Hermannsburg, Watarrka and surrounding homelands.

Minister for Local Decision Making Selena Uibo met with leaders from the Ngurratjuta/Pmara Ntjarra Aboriginal Corporation (Ngurratjuta) to finalise the deal, which was settled in conjunction with the National Indigenous Australians Agency (NIAA).

This Agreement will initiate community control in a 10-year plan for projects that support training and pathways, housing development and management, community safety, family services and education which will be based on each community’s priorities, needs and aspirations.

This is the first recognition of Ngurratjuta as the voice of the region, with ten cultural leaders from the Ntaria (Hermannsburg), Haasts Bluff, Papunya, Mount Liebig and Wallace Rockhole communities and outstations as the lead point of contact for decision-making.

Ngurratjuta communities aim to implement a Junior Ranger program that will connect children to career pathways on country as they grow and explore opportunities in the Region. Ngurratjuta has established a Child and Family Centre in Papunya and provides outreach to Mt Liebig and Haasts Bluff.

The LDM supports a partnership with NT Police to work towards a Mutual Recognition Agreement with Mt Liebig, Haasts Bluff and Papunya as well as working to implement a Justice Reinvestment Program across three communities in partnership with the Commonwealth Attorney General’s Department.

Opportunities for community housing management, tenancy, maintenance and development, municipal and essential services, education initiatives for two-way learning pathways and employment of language speaking staff in schools, are some of the initiatives on the table that are currently being worked through under this Agreement.

The Ngurratjuta region identified 6 priority areas to be the focus of the Agreement:

1. Housing tenancy, maintenance, construction and government employee housing administration;

2. Homelands municipal and essential services, housing maintenance services and special purpose grants (outstation specific);

3. Remote jobs, industry and employment/training programs;

4. Education attendance, two-way learning and pathways;

5. Social, disability and welfare service delivery; and

6. Community and economic development.

This LDM is a 10-year plan that seeks to return control of services by empowering an Aboriginal organisation to determine service delivery models that work best for their communities and region.

The Territory Labor Government continues to implement the LDM Framework to deliver LDM Agreements focused on supporting communities across the Territory.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Local Decision Making Selena Uibo:

“Our Labor Territory Government supports the work the regional communities have put into the Ngurratjuta LDM Agreement. This is a 10-year commitment and a journey we will remain committed to working together.”

“This Agreement with Ngurratjuta will start a journey of independence with determined goals in the areas of housing, essential services, education, youth programs, social services and welfare, and economic development, which are the cornerstones for thriving communities.”

“I look forward to seeing the progress Ngurratjuta continues to make as we work together to increase involvement and service delivery in order to support Ngurratjuta’s long-term objectives of transitioning services into community control.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Gwoja Chansey Paech:

“LDM agreements like this one help to ensure Aboriginal voices are at the centre of decision-making and that services are delivered by Aboriginal organisations.”

“This special event is an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of Ngurrarjuta leaders and community that will transform the social landscape toward a thriving and resilient region for the years to come.”

“I congratulate everyone for their care and collaboration to reach this milestone which is the beginning of a journey to support the self-determination of people living in remote communities across Central Australia.”

Northern Territory Government

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