Premier Steven Marshall is in the state’s north west visiting communities on the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands – his first visit since forming government in March.
The Premier will travel over 1,000 kilometres visiting communities including Indulkana, Ernabella (Pukatja) and Mimili during his ninth visit to the APY Lands since being elected to Parliament in 2010.
“During the trip, I will be talking with locals, service providers and other organisations, and reassuring them that the new government is committed to working with their remote communities to address the challenges they are facing and support them in developing future opportunities,” said Premier Steven Marshall.
I have been heartened by some of the recent progress being made on the Lands including:
- An increase in local employment, with more than 200 Anangu workers;
- Agreements with contractors to employ at least 30 per cent of Anangu workers and the availability of skills development programs;
- Upgrading of the main access road between the Stuart Highway and Ernabella;
- Completion of the Mobile Black Spot Program on the APY Lands providing coverage to Indulkana, Mimili, Fregon, Umuwa, Amata and Pipalyatjara.
“On this visit I am particularly looking forward to visiting the Ernabella Art Centre, Australia’s oldest, continuously running Indigenous Art Centre, which is celebrating its 70th anniversary this year.
“This particular arts centre has supported many absolutely incredible artists like Pepai Jangala Carroll, Imiyari Adamson, Tjimpuna Williams and Rupert Jack to name only a small few.
“For more than 65,000 years, Indigenous people have carried dreaming stories, song lines, languages and knowledge, and I feel very strongly that we must preserve this culture for future generations.
“I see how much potential the APY Lands have. It is one of the reasons why as Premier I have taken responsibility for the Aboriginal Affairs and Reconciliation portfolio, and it’s a role that I take very seriously.
“We have a responsibility - across government - to find more practical and timely ways to support our Aboriginal communities in meeting their challenges and developing their opportunities.
“I believe this is the best way to meet the aspirations of Aboriginal South Australians for a stronger and more productive relationship with the Government.”