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Lateline -

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Tonight - beware of Greeks bearing gifts.

We believe that this Government is using child sexual abuse as the Trojan horse to resume total
control of our lands.

As indigenous groups attack John Howard over deploying the army, the Government says it's a mercy
mission.

They're not rolling in there with tarvings or wepons, they're rolling in there with communications
and with assistance.

Good evening, welcome to Lateline. I'm Leigh Sales. Tonight while some question the motives of the
Howard Government, Aboriginal leaders Noel Pearson say the nay sayers of intervention are
indulgent.

That's a horrendous thing here. That people who are nay saying any kind of intervention are people
whose children, like my own, like my own, sleep safely at night. And I think that's a terrible
indulgence.

Our extended interview with Noel Pearson in a moment but first our other headlines. Another death
in custody, an Aboriginal man dies in the back of a Queensland police car. Rein check, Kevin Rudd's
wife escapes legal action over the underpayment of more than 100 employees. And on 'Lateline
Business', the green

Govt orchestrating a land grab: Aboriginal leaders

Govt orchestrating a land grab: Aboriginal leaders

Broadcast: 26/06/2007

Reporter: Dana Robertson

A group of prominent Australians and Aboriginal leaders have accused the Federal Government of
orchestrating a land grab under the guise of cleaning up remote communities in the Northern
Territory.

Transcript

LEIGH SALES: Central Australian Aboriginal leaders have accused the Federal Government of
orchestrating a 'land grab' under the guise of cleaning up the Northern Territory's remote
communities.

An alliance of Indigenous leaders, high-profile Australians and grassroots community organisations
has been formed to demand changes to the intervention plan, which is due to start in earnest
tomorrow. The group includes former prime minister Malcolm Fraser and former ATSIC chairwoman,
Lowitja O'Donoghue.

But despite the growing concern about its proposal, the Federal Government's convinced two more
states to commit police officers to the intervention.

Dana Robertson reports from Canberra.

DANA ROBERTSON: Aboriginal leaders don't deny their communities are in serious trouble.

OLGA HAVNEN, NORTHERN LAND COUNCIL: The fact that so many of us are here today, I think is only
testimony to how we view the situation as well.

DANA ROBERTSON: But they're still deeply suspicious about the Government's motivation for its
unprecedented takeover of Northern Territory Indigenous communities.

PAT TURNER, ABORIGINAL ORGANISATIONS OF ALICE SPRINGS: We believe that this Government is using
child sexual abuse as the Trojan horse to resume total control of our lands.

GREG PHILLIPS, MELBOURNE UNIVERSITY: There is no need to tie sexual abuse interventions with land
tenure. It's too much of a stretch for this nation to take, and the Government is lying through its
teeth to do so.

DANA ROBERTSON: Pat Turner's a former ATSIC CEO and says the Prime Minister's chosen his words
carefully.

PAT TURNER: That's why the Prime Minister called it a national emergency. You know, because in the
national interest, he can move on the Northern Territory land rights act. Right? We're not stupid.
We didn't come down in the last shower. We were there at the beginning.

DANA ROBERTSON: But it's an accusation the Government vehemently denies.

MAL BROUGH, INDIGENOUS AFFAIRS MINISTER: I mean, the reality is, the Aboriginal land you're
referring to has publicly funded roads, publicly funded pools, publicly funded houses. Everything's
publicly funded. There is no point in the Commonwealth taking this back for some economic gain.

DANA ROBERTSON: Around 50 community organisations met in Canberra today to discus the Federal plan.
They say it's totally unworkable, and have written an open letter to Mal Brough to tell him so.
They say there is an "over-reliance on top down and punitive measure, and insufficient indication
that additional resources will be mobilised where they are urgently needed".

BEV MANTON, NSW ABORIGINAL LAND COUNCIL: It's hard to comprehend how the Government thinks this
could work.

DANA ROBERTSON: The army will begin to move into five communities tomorrow. Mal Brough expects them
to be embraced.

MAL BROUGHT: They're not rolling in there with tanks, they're not rolling in there with weapons,
they're rolling in there with communications and assistance.

DANA ROBERTSON: But Pat Turner says Aboriginal women are fleeing with their children, and not just
from Mutitjulu.

PAT TURNER: We understand it's happening in northern communities as well, because everyone thinks
the army and the police are coming to town and they're terrified.

MAL BROUGH: It is these very typical, scaremongering tactics, standover bully-boy tactics and lies
that some have perpetrated upon their people for too long to keep them scared of authority, to keep
them in a state of desperation.

DANA ROBERTSON: But while the opposition from Indigenous organisations is growing, the Federal
Government's had at least one win. It's managed to convince a reluctant Queensland premier to
commit 10 of his state's police to the Territory intervention.

JOHN HOWARD, PRIME MINISTER: This is a very important national priority, and I'm grateful that the
Queensland Premier has made these police available. I'm also grateful that the Tasmanian Government
has made some police officers available.

DANA ROBERTSON: But the deal wasn't without trade-offs. Peter Beattie extracted $12 million from
the Federal Government to build police housing in remote parts of his own state.

And there's still no final price tag on the proposal. Mal Brough says the Commonwealth will spend
whatever is necessary to make it work.

Dana Robertson, Lateline.

Beattie calls for calm after N Qld death in custody

Beattie calls for calm after N Qld death in custody

Broadcast: 26/06/2007

Reporter: Leigh Sales

The Queensland Government has promised a full and open inquiry after another Aboriginal death in
custody in far north Queensland.

Transcript

LEIGH SALES: Queensland's premier is calling for calm after the death of another Aboriginal man in
custody.

The 44-year-old was being taken from Dimbulah, west of Cairns, to nearby Mareeba for questioning
when he died in the back of a police car.

The death comes less than a week after senior sergeant Chris Hurley was acquitted of the
manslaughter of Palm Island resident, Mulrunji Doomadgee.

The Queensland Government and police have promised a full and open investigation. Premier Peter
Beattie says cool heads need to prevail.

PETER BEATTIE, QLD PREMIER: Let's not react until we know the full details and the full facts. And
I urge everyone to please wait until the appropriate investigations are done.

LEIGH SALES: Two investigators and a forensic expert will arrive in Mareeba tonight to prepare a
report for the state coroner.

Rudd voices support for Govt intervention in NT

Rudd voices support for Govt intervention in NT

Broadcast: 26/06/2007

Reporter: Suzanne Smith

Federal Opposition Leader Kevin Rudd has told a conference in Cairns that the Labor premiers should
supply police to the intervention by the Federal Government in the Northern Territory.

Transcript

LEIGH SALES: Well, while the Federal Government's intervention plan is running into stiff
opposition in Canberra, a more supportive atmosphere has prevailed at a conference in Cairns - and
some of that support is coming from the Opposition Leader, Kevin Rudd.

Today Mr Rudd told the conference, hosted by Noel Pearson's Cape York Institute, that the Labor
premiers should supply police to the Federal Government's efforts in the Northern Territory.

The most controversial views of the day were expressed by one of our most powerful economic policy
makers, secretary of the Treasury, Dr Ken Henry. He advocated welfare reforms for both black and
white Australians.

Suzanne Smith has the story.

SUZANNE SMITH: Federal Opposition Leader Kevin Rudd held a breakfast meeting with Noel Pearson to
thrash out the policy issues. When it came for the Labor leader to address the conference, Noel
Pearson gave this blunt description of his former boss.

NOEL PEARSON, CAPE YORK INSTITUTE: Kevin was my first boss. Mate, you think the new IR regime's
hard. (Laughter from audience)

SUZANNE SMITH: On the issue of Indigenous policy, Mr Pearson and his old boss were in agreement.
The Cape York model might be applied across the nation.

KEVIN RUDD, OPPOSITION LEADER: Is it going to be a question of that particular model being
universally applicable across the country? Let's wait and see. If we form the next government of
the country, or if Mr Howard forms the next government of the country, I think it's important we
try and make this work.

SUZANNE SMITH: Controversially, the model imposes conditions on welfare payments. Parents who
neglect their children will have 50 per cent of their payments quarantined. In addition, a Families
Commission set up in each community will ensure welfare money is spent on children and not wasted.

KEVIN RUDD: I think one of the things I'm going to do if we form government is to pull the premiers
and chief ministers together on how we can now do this better nationally, across the board.

SUZANNE SMITH: On the issue of the Federal Government's intervention in the Northern Territory, the
Opposition Leader urged state and territory leaders to cooperate.

KEVIN RUDD: When it comes to the dedication of police, it's incumbent on all state and territory
governments to give what they can. Obviously different states and territories are going to have
different policing demands, but we need to see a strong effort from the Federal Government as well
when it comes to the policing needs behind this federal government initiative.

SUZANNE SMITH: Also attending today's conference in Cairns was on the nation's most powerful
bureaucrats, secretary of the Treasury, Dr Ken Henry. Dr Henry says he has observed Indigenous
deprivation up-close, he grew up near the impoverish Aboriginal community of Purfleet in northern
New South Wales.

DR KEN HENRY, SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY: In extreme cases, and Purfleet was one of these. The
social norms of the community can be so powerful that they effectively determine the complete set
of all feasible life experiences of all members.

SUZANNE SMITH: Dr Henry also used his speech to broaden the welfare debate to cover mainstream
Australia. He believes over-generous income support, for both Indigenous and non-Indigenous welfare
recipients, is sapping ingenuity and drive,

DR KEN HENRY: Currently, a couple with three young children can access about $36,500 a year in
income support payments and family tax benefit without working at all. That fact affects workforce
participation decisions all around Australia in all sorts of communities.

SUZANNE SMITH: Treasury secretary Dr Ken Henry was asked whether the Federal Government's
intervention in the Northern Territory was an example of big Government disempowering Aboriginal
communities. He had this politically astute advice for Aboriginal communities about how they could
become proactive on the policy front.

DR KEN HENRY: If you as an Indigenous person in this room, want to take up, accept that
responsibility, you really are going to have to get a lot better at the job of policy advocacy.
That's just a simple fact.

SUZANNE SMITH: Some policy advice that shouldn't get the Treasury secretary in too much trouble,
this time. Suzanne Smith, Lateline.

Noel Pearson discusses the issues faced by Indigenous communities

Noel Pearson discusses the issues faced by Indigenous communities

Broadcast: 26/06/2007

Reporter: Noel Pearson

Director of the Cape York Institute Noel Pearson talks to Leigh Sales about the issues facing
remote Indigenous communities.

Transcript

LEIGH SALES: Now to our interview with Noel Pearson, the director of the Cape York Institute, and
for many years now, one of the country's most respected Aboriginal leaders.

Recently he handed a report to the Federal Government which called for an end to "passive welfare",
meaning conditions would be attached to all welfare payments to Indigenous Australians. The Pearson
plan calls for a trial of the scheme in four north Queensland communities.

He joined us from our Cairns studio just a short time ago.

Noel Pearson, thanks for joining us this evening. It's now five days since the Prime Minister
announced he was taking emergency action to stop the sexual abuse of Indigenous children, we've had
time to watch the reaction to that play out. Are you surprised or disappointed at how quickly it's
descended into a political storm?

NOEL PEARSON: I'm amazed that anybody would put the protection of children secondary to anything,
particularly when those children are subject to imminent abuse, abuse that takes place on a regular
basis that's the subject of binge drinking, week in, week out. I'm just amazed that anybody would
put the protection of children secondary to anything else. I think that those who have objections
to immediate intervention have to ask themselves whether they're willing this whole exercise to
fail, and geez, if you're willing the whole exercise to fail, what kind of priorities do you have
in relation to the wellbeing of Indigenous children?

LEIGH SALES: Do you think that this negativity that we're seeing could have that much of an impact
as this policy's rolled out? That it could cause it to fail?

NOEL PEARSON: It will depend on Indigenous people at the end of the day asking themselves and
answering the question, asking themselves whether they believe the integrity and wellbeing of their
children is the number one priority in the world, and if it is, if it is, let's understand that
everything happens within a political context. Of course this is a political context. Of course we
don't like that person and we don't, we don't like that party and we don't - we suspect that
person's motives and so on, but geez, the imperative here is the protection of our children and we
as Indigenous people have got to ask ourselves the hard question - do we put the protection of our
children ahead of everything else? Ahead of the fact - ahead of the question as to whether we like
the Prime Minister, or we don't like the Prime Minister, or we like that Government or we don't
like that Government.

I mean, quite frankly I couldn't care less whether John Howard or Kevin Rudd ruled this world. My
priority is to take advantage for immediate intervention for the protection of children.

LEIGH SALES: There might be some out there who would have expected that the majority of Aboriginal
leaders would say, "look, thank goodness, we've been calling for action on this for so long, now
something's going to happen". Why have we seen this negative reaction?

NOEL PEARSON: Well, you would think so. You would think so. This is almost a form of madness. I
can't understand it myself. But I suppose it is an explanation, it gives you some kind of
explanation as to why we have not done anything effective to prevent this abuse hitherto. It does
provide some kind of explanation as to why we have never done anything effective up to now. We
haven't come up with the ideas to prevent the abuse. Did we - we're in fact saying, I hear people
saying in the commentary, that this abuse has been known about for a long time. People say in
defence of, in objection to what the Government is doing. people say, "oh, the Government should
have known, we've known about this problem for 20 years." Geez, if we've known about it for that
long, why is it not that we've come up with any kind of effective solution to the problem?

LEIGH SALES: So it's not just the Government's fault, it's the people's fault as well?

NOEL PEARSON: Absolutely. I mean, you know, the first and best defenders of an Aboriginal child has
got to be Aboriginal people. You know, these are our children at stake here. You know, it's quite,
it's quite to be expected that the first people who should have regard for our children are
ourselves, and, you know, it's just an absolutely miserable show that we see people who have never
come up with any solution to prevent this suffering in 20 years of knowledge about the problem, but
the minute somebody suggests trying to do something decisive about it, you've got all of them
finding every excuse under the sun not to do anything.

LEIGH SALES: We heard accusations today that rumours are being spread in Mutitjulu that the police
and army are going to be coming in to take children away. Who would be spreading such
disinformation, and why?

NOEL PEARSON: Well, you know, I think that - I mean, I've been taking the stick quite a bit to
progressives in relation to Aboriginal policy. People on the, people who have always professed a
regard for Aboriginal people, and, you know, there's something mad going on from in the midst of
many of our traditional supporters because they're putting quibbling about politics and putting all
kinds of objections in the road.

For example, the suggestion that this is about land rights? You know, I've got as much objections
as anybody to the ideological prejudices of the Howard Government in relation to land, but this
question is not about a "land grab". The Anderson Wild report tells us about the scale of
Aboriginal children's neglect and abuse. This is what this is about. It's an absolute alibi to try
and characterise this debate about being about land grabs and so on. Who wants a land grab in main
street Hopevale, for goodness sake.

LEIGH SALES: Isn't it valid, though, to ask the question whether the Prime Minister is playing
politic given that, as you say, these problems have been known about for a long time, the Prime
Minister has been in power for 11 years and now we're a few months out from a federal election and
all of a sudden, action is taken. Isn't it a valid to ask the question, "is he playing politics?"

NOEL PEARSON: Absolutely, ask the question by all means, but I think the response of the leader of
the Opposition today has made very clear that though these things happen in an election context and
so on, and people, politicians and governments make electoral calculations about the measures they
take and so on - nevertheless, this for the leader of the Opposition, as it is for me, is an
opportunity. It is an opportunity to do something decisive, it is an opportunity that I want to
take advantage of in Cape York Peninsula for my own people and our own children up here, to be
provided with the necessary protection and the necessary supports to make sure that we - Rex Wild
QC said in his report the other week, he said he hopes from now on no Aboriginal child suffers
abuse. We should all, we should all hold that hope but in order to give effect to that hope, we've
got to stop the grog, we've got to get the police in there, and we've got to have an absolutely
vigilant attitude towards the behaviour of adults around children, particularly if they're
drinking, and particularly if the circumstances of children are such that they're vulnerable to
abuse.

LEIGH SALES: Government logistics teams will head into some Northern Territory communities
tomorrow, obviously they're going to have to tread sensitively. Given the emotions swirling around
this and the situation in those communities, are you concerned that things could go wrong?

NOEL PEARSON: You know, the big danger for the Government, I think, and - is that they can't go
marching in like cowboys. They've got to go marching in with humility, with support, not with
arrogance, and they've got to enjoin the Aboriginal people of that community. Because you talk to
me about one community that does not have within it, sober grandmothers, sober mothers, sober men,
who are concerned about these problems and who would not welcome relief for their children and for
their community.

There is within every community good people, and it's an absolutely shameful thing that those good
people are misled, you know, misled by people whose children sleep safely at night. You know,
that's the horrendous thing here. That the people who are nay saying any kind of intervention are
people whose children, like my own, like my own, like my own, sleep safely at night. And I think
that's a terrible indulgence. When our children sleep safely at night, we seek to put road blocks
in the way, and we wish failure, we wish failure upon any decisive action that's going to deliver
some relief of suffering to vulnerable children.

LEIGH SALES: The Prime Minister has said that he and the Aboriginal affairs Minister, Mal Brough,
will accept full responsibility for how this plays out. Do you also feel some responsibility given
your input and influence into this policy?

NOEL PEARSON: I feel responsible and I will absolutely be responsible for the actions that I take
in Cape York Peninsula and the actions that I have advocated. Now, you know, there's points of
difference between myself and the Government in relation to implementation. I urge once again that
the Government enjoins Indigenous leaders, because at the end of the day you have to engage
Aboriginal people in this process. You have to get moral ownership of this issue and, you know,
it's a poor reflection on us as a people if we put politicking ahead of the moral ownership of this
question of protection of our children.

LEIGH SALES: What are those points of difference that you have with the Government?

NOEL PEARSON: Well, in relation to welfare payments, I absolutely concur with the idea of attaching
obligations to welfare payments and to intervene in relation to those payments. But the
intervention that I want is one where it is only people who are being irresponsible where the
intervention takes place. Where parents, and there are many Aboriginal parents who are responsible
in relation to their children, and they should be left and encouraged in the continuation of that
responsibility. We should only intervene where people are doing the wrong thing so that we send the
right message. We send the right message to everybody that if you do the right thing, then you
exercise all of the privileges of making your own decisions as a parent. But listen, the day has
come when there is an end to the day when you as an adult can abuse the money that you get, don't
use it for the benefit of the kids, use it for drinking, use it for gambling, use it for drugs and
create living hell for your children. That day has got to come to an end.

LEIGH SALES: On a personal level, how do you feel about some of the negative comments that have
been directed towards you during this debate. For example, I read one comment on the weekend from a
senior Aboriginal leader saying that "Noel Pearson's not our Messiah?"

NOEL PEARSON: Well, I'm sure the person who said that is absolutely correct in the advice. But I
have to say that that's absolutely water off a duck's back to me. I'm just - I would just urge
Aboriginal leaders to get real, to get real here. I couldn't give a damn whether John Howard is the
PM this time next year or whether Kevin Rudd is. The issues facing our people are so much more
important than that question, and the election issues and the escalation of the child abuse issues
- which your program has to take so much credit for in bringing to national focus here - those two
storms have come together to create an opportunity and I was very pleased today to stand next to
Kevin Rudd, and I detect, I detect a very clear commitment on his part, that though these be
political circumstances, this is not going to be a political issue.

LEIGH SALES: With the Federal Government now seizing control, what will it take from here on to
persuade the Prime Minister, whether John Howard or Kevin Rudd in the future, to devolve power to
the Aboriginal people, or has the moment for self-determination now passed with this move?

NOEL PEARSON: Listen, self-determination - in the proper meaning of the world, if
self-determination means that we should be put in artificial office, we should be given titles, we
should be given travel allowances and all of the trappings of office, but we don't care about the
suffering of the children and we don't do anything about the disintegration of social circumstances
in our own communities, if that's the meaning of self-determination, then I don't want any part of
it. But if self-determination is about taking real responsibility for your people's solutions and
for your people's problems, if that's what self-determination means, if it means hard work and
responsibility, and accountability, not just saying, "well listen, our children are miserable,
they're malnutritioned and somebody else is to blame for that", that's not self-determination in my
view. But real self-determination is about Indigenous people taking responsibility for the results,
and I can tell you the results that are out there at the moment are very, very miserable and
shameful. And, you know, it is a measure of our performance that - it's a measure of our
performance in fulfilment of what we have called self-determination, that the results are so
miserable.

LEIGH SALES: Long term - when this immediate crisis is hopefully stabilised - do you think there's
a role for another body, similar to ATSIC, perhaps on a better model, to be developed to help
Aboriginal people take greater control over their own futures?

NOEL PEARSON: Absolutely. We've got the take charge. We've got to be given back responsibility.
Might I say the collapse of responsibility that we see, the wasteland of responsibility in
Indigenous Australia is the consequence of government and bureaucracies and welfare organisations,
including NGOs, who have intervened in Aboriginal affairs and said, "listen, you don't have to take
responsibility. You have a whole suite of rights, including the right to welfare, the right to
drink, the right to party all night, the right to have the trappings of office without being
accountable for any return on your role."

You know, it's been the intervention of government and bureaucracies in this way that has really
crumbled what were strong and proud people. You know, when - in Aboriginal families that are
functional, there's no greater love of children than Aboriginal people who nurture and look after
their own children, and you witness that time and time again. But, you know, in recent decades,
this very precious thing of the Aboriginal love for their own people has come under severe assault
and has severely unravelled because responsibility has been taken away from us and we've abandoned
it. We've been quite happy to abandon it, and ultimately the solution to our problems will require
us to pick up the mantle of responsibility and take it up because nobody can save us as surely as
we can save ourselves.

LEIGH SALES: So you would like to see a new ATSIC in place?

NOEL PEARSON: There's got to be some kind of structure in which we interface with government to
ensure - because I can tell you, you try and get responsibility out of a welfare agency. You try
and say, "well those Aboriginal people there should now exercise full responsibility." This is
like... Dracula to garlic or something, you know. Dracula to a wooden stake. They hate the idea of
giving back responsibility to Aboriginal people and, you know, we have turned into a nation of
cripples because of those policies that have treated us like children, and the time has come for
black fellas to wake up to the real meaning of self-determination.

You know, I hear people bleat uphill and down about self-determination and in my view
self-determination is about people taking responsibility for themselves, for their own families and
for their communities and, you know, it's an absolutely shameful hour that has descended on us,
absolutely shameful hour where even an emergency intervention to protect the safety of our children
is hindered, is hindered by people who supposedly have good will for Aboriginal people and in fact,
those people are willing, they are willing the protection and sucker (PHONETIC) to Aboriginal
children to fail in the same way and as vehemently as they will failure in Iraq.

LEIGH SALES: Noel Pearson, thank you for your time this evening.

NOEL PEARSON: Thank you very much, Leigh.

Social support provided to central Aust teenage girls

Social support provided to central Aust teenage girls

Broadcast: 26/06/2007

Reporter: Sara Everingham

Last week the Aboriginal-run NPY council for women brought together more than 100 teenage girls at
Yulara, near Uluru, to help them strive for a better future.

Transcript

LEIGH SALES: While the past two weeks have highlighted the problems engulfing Aboriginal
communities, there are also glimmers of hope.

The Aboriginal-run NPY Women's Council delivers social services to communities in the cross-border
regions of central Australia, stretching into South Australia, Western Australia and the Northern
Territory. Last week they brought together more than a hundred teenage girls at Yulara, near Uluru,
to help them strive for a better future.

From Yulara, Sara Everingham reports.

SARA EVERINGHAM: These Aboriginal girls are camping out near Kata Tjuta in central Australia.
They've been brought here by the Aboriginal-run NPY women's Council, which brings health and
community services to Indigenous people across central Australia. 16-year-old Nadine Wicker from
the community of Blackstone near the Western Desert is hoping to be one of the first in her
community to finish Year 12.

NADINE WICKER, YEAR 11 STUDENT: It's good to go to school, good fun at school. You learn, get more
education, you know.

SARA EVERINGHAM: The Women's Council has been running these conferences on education and careers
for young Aboriginal women over the past 10 years. The girls are being shown their options for both
study and work, but for these girls achieving their dreams isn't always easy.

NADINE WICKER: It's really hard sometimes with families and friends, and all that.

SARA EVERINGHAM: What do you mean it can be hard?

NADINE WICKER: Fighting, people, families drinking and smoking.

SARA EVERINGHAM: Nadine Wicker's personal story is one of remarkable transformation.

NADINE WICKER: I used to sniff when I was 12, I used to smoke, drink, but I stopped them.

SARA EVERINGHAM: In her early teens she lived in Kalgoorlie and didn't attend school for several
years, but when she was asked to care for her crippled grandmother, Nadine Wicker changed her life
- she moved to Blackstone and with the support of teachers, is now regularly attending school.

NADINE WICKER: I used to be dumb, sit down, you know, wait till the other kids go to school all the
time. And feel funny not to go to school all the time.

SARA EVERINGHAM: The workshops that Nadine Wicker and the other girls are attending are not just
about drugs and alcohol, but also domestic violence and sexual abuse.

KERRIANNE COX, BEAGLE BAY COMMUNITY COUNCIL: We all know what is going down in our community.
Nobody can't say that we don't know what's going on.

SARA EVERINGHAM: Kerrianne Cox has been speaking at these conferences since they began 10 years
ago. She says she was sexually abused as a child, and as chairwoman of the Beagle Bay Community
Council in Western Australia, she's been fighting against sexual abuse despite criticism from other
council members.

KERRIANNE COX: The extent of the problem has gone too far, and enough's enough, we must stop it.
And it's really important for all of us to be accountable. If we continue to deny ourselves, then
we are supporting the very violation that has violated me and many of us, whether we're men or
women.

SARA EVERINGHAM: John Howard says he wants to help indigenous girls like Nadine Wicker, but it
remains to be seen if his radical intervention into Indigenous affairs can change community
attitudes and win the support of Aboriginal people on the ground. Sara Everingham, Lateline.

Workplace watchdog rules out legal action against Rein

Workplace watchdog rules out legal action against Rein

Broadcast: 26/06/2007

Reporter: Leigh Sales

The Office of Workplace Services has decided that a company owned by Therese Rein, the wife of
Opposition Leader Kevin Rudd, did breach the Workplace Relations Act but has ruled out taking legal
action.

Transcript

LEIGH SALES: The workplace watchdog has ruled out taking legal action against a company owned by
the wife of Opposition Leader, Kevin Rudd. An investigation by the Office of Workplace Services has
found that Therese Rein's company did breach the Workplace Relations Act by underpaying 107
workers. But it's concluded that it was not the result of deliberate or careless conduct, and the
company had voluntarily corrected the underpayments.

Middle East quartet to meet in Jerusalem

Middle East quartet to meet in Jerusalem

Broadcast: 26/06/2007

Reporter: Jane Hutcheon

Special envoys from the European Union, Russia, the United States and the United Nations are to
meet in Jerusalem for the first time since Hamas seized control of Gaza.

Transcript

LEIGH SALES: The group known as the 'Middle East quartet' meets later tonight for the first time
since Hamas seized control of Gaza. Special envoys from the EU, Russia, the US and the United
Nations will meet in Jerusalem, and could confirm outgoing British Prime Minister Tony Blair as the
new EU representative. The meeting comes after Israel said it would release 250 Palestinian
prisoners as a good will gesture to bolster the Palestinian leadership.

ABC correspondent Jane Hutcheon reports.

JANE HUTCHEON: The Middle East quartet has yet to make a pronouncement on the situation in Gaza but
there's speculation it's about to appoint a new envoy with a big reputation - outgoing British
Prime Minister Tony Blair.

The quartet's meeting comes a day after the leaders of Egypt, Israel, Jordan and one of the
Palestinian territories, met in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh. The summit was a public
display of solidarity. In a bid to bolster the moderate government of President Mahmoud Abbas,
Israel's Prime Minister offered to free 250 Palestinian prisoners. The prisoners too are moderate,
and to appease the Israeli public, none have Jewish blood on their hands. It isn't likely to please
Hamas. Thousands of its supporters remain behind Israel bars, many haven't even been charged.

It's almost two weeks since Hamas seized control of Gaza in a series of bloody battles. Sacked
Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh wants to negotiate with President Abbas, but the moderate leader,
humiliated by Hamas' ability to seize control, has refused to talk.

Hamas, meanwhile, released an audio recording of Gilad Shalit, the young Israeli corporal abducted
in Gaza exactly a year ago. In the recording, he speaks of poor health and hints at a prisoner
exchange which his captors have continued to press for. It comes after the BBC's Gaza
correspondent, Alan Johnston, was shown wearing an explosives belt warning Hamas or anyone else not
to attempt to rescue him.

In this chaotic state of affairs, it's debatable whether the Middle East quartet will make any
pronouncement on Gaza. President Abbas now wants to kick-start negotiations for setting up an
independent Palestinian state. But in the current climate, whether Gaza will eventually be part of
that entity is debatable.

Jane Hutcheon, Lateline.

That's all from us. 'Lateline Business' coming up in just a moment. If you'd like to look back at
tonight's interview with Noel Pearson or review any of Lateline's stories or transcripts you can
visit our website. And now 'Lateline Business' with Emma.