Northern Territory Shadow Minister for Multi-Cultural Affairs Peter Styles
Victor P Taffa
The Henderson Government’s commitment to multi-cultural affairs falls significantly short of its rhetoric.
According to Shadow Minister for Multi-Cultural Affairs Peter Styles the Government promised to maintain spending on multi-cultural programs during the 2008 Territory election campaign.
“Instead, the budget has been trending down in recent years.” Mr. Styles said.
“This culminated in the 2010-11 budget, which saw a $23,000 year-on-year cut to the Government’s financial allocation to multi-cultural affairs.”
“In 2009-10 the Government provided $1.903 Million to the budget, this year that figure was $1.878 Million.”
“The Chief Minister said during today’s Estimates Committee hearings that the multi-cultural budget hadn’t been cut.”
“This is plainly untrue.” Mr. Styles said.
“It’s telling that during 2008, the election year, the Government’s Multi-Cultural Budget was $2.597 Million. The decline since then has been significant.”
“The spending on multi-culturalism across the Northern Territory is in stark contrast to the almost $1 Million the Government spends on Chief Ministers’ offices for failed Labor candidates in Palmerston and Katherine.” Mr. Styles said.
“It’s also in stark contrast to the additional $10 Million the Chief Minister allocated to his own policy unit.”
“The cuts show the Government’s spending isn’t keeping pace with the Territory’s growing multi-cultural population and that the Government’s rhetoric surrounding the development of a multi-cultural community isn’t replicated by its commitment.” Mr. Styles said.