Alyawarr people, as with other Aboriginal peoples, have contributed in no small part to Autralia's economic prosperity and we seek to exploit our rights to attain greater participation in the current and future economies.
The Australian pastoral industry was built on the back of the Aboriginal land and stockmen and that on Alyawarr land was no different. Australia also benefits economically, largely through tourism, by having Indigenous peoples live a traditional way of life and speaking their native tongue. Furthermore, if ordinary Australians were asked whether they would prefer to maintain this or not, we believe that the answer would be in the affirmative (as the Swedes do for their native Sami people). While quantifying this benefit is difficult, it can be expressed relative to the alternative (which is referred to by economists as opportunity cost).
Interest in Aboriginal Australia is not limited to its culture. The socio-economic chasm and resulting political tension between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australia is a stain on the nation. Welfare responses have invariably been imposed and have invariably failed. Economic participation, along with social and cultural participation is the key to our future.
There are various economic opportunities that appear to be available to us, including:
- substitution of government and government-funded positions with Alyawarr labour and task substitution and job redesign;
- potential employment and contracting opportunities that may arise from mining ventures;
- assisting Aboriginal-owned Ooratippra Station and others in the recruitment and support of Alyawarr labour to its Indigenous Pastoral Program;
- expanded production and sale of art-work;
- self-management of government and government-funded programs;
- tourist ventures, in partnership with an operator based in Alice Springs;
- environmental management;
- leasing of land for economic development purposes, including existing pastoral leases once our lands are handed back to us;
- royalties from mining ventures.
A key aspect to realising such opportunities is putting in place sufficient infrastructure.