Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

$5.3 million upgrade for Tangentyere housing

The Australian Government will provide an immediate injection of $5.3 million to Tangentyere Council for upgrades to existing housing in the Alice Springs town camps.

This funding will be targeted at approximately 170 houses and allows Tangentyere Council to complete its upgrade program for town camp houses.

The decision follows the historic agreement by Tangentyere Council to provide the Australian Government with a long-term lease over town camps in Alice Springs.

The work plan was signed today at a meeting with the Tangentyere Council, the Housing Associations and the Australian and Northern Territory Governments.

We needed urgent action to deal with the shocking situation in the Alice Springs town camps.

This agreement is a great first step in improving housing in the camps. Better housing is essential for improving the lives of children in these communities.

As part of the lease agreement, there will also be a financial package of $50 million for major capital works.

This money will be used to upgrade essential service infrastructure – primarily power, water, sewerage, drains and roads – and improve housing in the town camps.

It will include construction of additional new houses to reduce overcrowding.

These major capital works will be undertaken as part of the Strategic Indigenous Housing and Infrastructure Program, which is currently securing construction companies to deliver Indigenous housing projects across the Northern Territory.

As part of both the housing upgrade and the major capital works project, Indigenous people will be given significant employment and training opportunities.

Tangentyere Council has already delivered $2.5 million in housing upgrades, with improvements to 36 houses.

The Australian Government is committed to continued cooperation to deliver ongoing improvements to Indigenous communities.