The relative economic status of Indigenous people in New South Wales

Author/editor: Taylor, J, Roach, LM
Year published: 1994
Issue no.: 55


A mid-term review of the Aboriginal Employment Development Policy (AEDP) has recently been completed. While much of the associated policy-rhetoric and assessment of policy outcomes has been aimed at the national level, the fiscal environment in which AEDP goals are to be achieved is invariably one of regional labour markets and administrative systems operating in the economic context of States and Territories. In view of this reality, this paper responds to a need for regional-level analyses of change in the economic status of Indigenous people compared to that of non-Indigenous people in each State and Territory. Using 1986 and 1991 Census-based social indicators for New South Wales, attention is focussed on relative shifts in population growth and intra-State distribution, labour force and income status, and levels of welfare dependency (measured as non-employment income). A major finding is that while the gap in labour force status between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people has narrowed, the relative income status and level of welfare dependency of Indigenous people has not improved. This suggests that increased emphasis on the quality of AEDP outcomes, and not just quantity, will be necessary if the overall aims of the AEDP are to be accomplished.

ISBN: 0 7315 1729 6

ISSN:1036 1774

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