Return to ration days in NT

ANTI-INTERVENTION campaigners Barbara Shaw, Paddy Gibson and Nat Wasley recently traveled to Tennant Creek to find out about how the intervention is affecting people’s lives. They spoke to Margaret Anderson, who is living under the harsh income management regime in Tennant Creek.

“WHEN THE intervention started off I thought it was really good. Now I end up just walking out (from Centrelink) without anything in my hand, no money, just paper to go shopping every time in the Foodbarn.

“I still I got money back there, $3000 they holding. One time I ask them to give me some to go down to Alice Springs, they said, “You can’t take it out”, but I don’t drink? They said I can only spend that money at Little Rippers (variety store) or Foodbarn. But I got my rent too, my power, my phone. I couldn’t use it on any of these things.

“I began to understand. I was brought up that way too myself. I was looking at that this now, and I thought, my grandchildren going back to those days in the past, backwards to where I started from. You know the ration days. Where we were allowed to go and get some flour, sugar and that’s it.”


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  1. In attempting to take steps forward, why is it that we are taking huge steps backwards? There are more intelligent ways to go about finding a solution, but reverting to old ways is not the answer.


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