Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Office of Coordinator-General for Remote Indigenous Services

The Australian Government today introduced legislation to create the statutory office of Coordinator General for Remote Indigenous Services.

The Coordinator-General will drive the implementation of major reforms in housing, infrastructure and employment in remote Indigenous communities.

Supported by the Council of Australian Governments, the establishment of this position will ensure government commitments in remote Indigenous communities deliver real results.

The Coordinator-General will initially focus resources in priority remote locations across Australia. COAG envisaged that new locations would be added over time and that this would be done after consultation with the relevant State or Territory.

The Coordinator-General will report directly to the Minister for Indigenous Affairs and will work closely with Indigenous people, community groups, industry and government organisations to make in-roads on our national targets for closing the gap.

The Coordinator-General will formally report twice a year on the development and delivery of remote services and on the progress that has been made in achieving the closing the gap targets.

The position will be given the authority to coordinate across agencies, to cut through bureaucratic blockages and red tape, and to make sure services are delivered effectively.

The Coordinator-General will provide information to Commonwealth, State and Territory agencies on obstacles within their areas of responsibility and advise the Minister for Indigenous Affairs and COAG on the need for any necessary changes.

The creation of this statutory office is yet another important step in the Government’s determined efforts to close the gap and tackle the appalling living conditions in remote Indigenous communities.